Innocence Network Scouting for Talent

This position has been filled. Katherine Judson started working this October, 2012.

Ms. Judson can provide sample filings and medical references to attorneys defending false accusations of abusive infant head injury. Contact her at katherine.judson@wisc.edu

In a solid piece of good news, the Innocence Network has found three years of funding for a staff attorney to coordinate defense efforts in shaken baby cases.

The job posting, available at http://globalwrong.files.wordpress.com/2012/07/sbs-fellow-07-02-12.pdf, identifies the position as “Shaken Baby Syndrome Litigation Fellow.” Duties will include following the medical and legal controversies that surround SBS and identifying a strategy for reducing the rate of wrongful convictions.

The Innocence Network is a coalition of individual Innocence Projects across the country and around the world. The original Innocence Project, founded in 1992 by Barry C. Scheck and Peter J. Neufeld, looked only at cases in which evolving DNA technology could be used to re-examine tissue samples from earlier trials. Their web site now reports 292 exonerations through DNA testing, 17 of prisoners on death row. Most Innocence Projects are associated with law or journalism schools, allowing them to bring pro bono student work into the appeals process.

Some Innocence Projects have now expanded their scopes beyond DNA, and the Innocence Network has recognized the alarming rate of wrongful convictions in cases of infant head injury. The job summary for the new SBS position notes:

A growing number of cases are now dealing with shaken baby syndrome, where an adult caregiver is convicted of a crime after the death of a child in his or her care, due to the presence of three internal symptoms that doctors once believed could result only from shaking the child.

Given the pace of new cases and new articles lately, the successful candidate will definitely need several of the specified “Key Competencies,” including “Remains organized amidst multiple, competing demands” and “Keeps a sense of humor throughout.”

September 6 update:  They’re interviewing the final candidates now. Look for an announcement soon.

-Sue Luttner

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Filed under abusive head trauma, AHT, Innocence Network, SBS, shaken baby syndrome

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