Professor Susan A. McMahon has taught at the Georgetown University Law Center since 2011. Her scholarly work focuses on the impact of legal systems on individuals living with mental health conditions. She has written on issues such as the forcible medication of defendants found incompetent to stand trial, the effects of lengthy pre-trial detentions on individuals with mental health conditions, and the ways stigma against individuals with mental illness manifests in various laws. Her work has appeared in the Georgetown Law Journal, the American Criminal Law Review, and other legal journals, and one of her pieces was named a “must-read” by the Getting Scholarship into Court Project of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.
Professor McMahon was a law student at Georgetown and graduated magna cum laude. After graduation, Professor McMahon joined Debevoise & Plimpton, where she represented clients in white-collar criminal defense cases, intellectual property disputes, and federal criminal cases. She also represented, pro bono, several Guantanamo Bay detainees in their habeas corpus petitions before federal courts. All of her clients were eventually released from detention. From 2008 to 2009, she clerked for the Honorable Richard J. Leon of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
Before attending law school, Professor McMahon was an award-winning reporter for The Sun in Lowell, Mass.
Contributions to Law Reviews and Other Scholarly Journals
"Man accused of trying to help militants to stay in prison," coverage by News Channel ABC 12, November 30, 2018, mentioning Professor of Law Susan A. McMahon.
"Mentally ill man pleads guilty to helping radicals in Syria," coverage by AP News, August 22, 2018, quoting Professor Susan McMahon.
"Decisions near for man charged with aiding radicals Decisions near for man charged with helping Syria radicals," coverage by Winston-Salem Journal (NC), August 1, 2018, featuring Professor Susan McMahon.
"US judge deems mentally ill man fit for trial in terror case," coverage by WTOP (DC), April 13, 2017, referencing a 2013 study by Associate Professor Susan McMahon.