Criminal Justice Experts to Discuss Prof. Abbe Smith’s New Book “Guilty People” and the State of Criminal Defense in America

February 12, 2020

WASHINGTON – On Feb. 13 at 4 p.m., Georgetown Law will host an event marking the release of Abbe Smith’s newest book, Guilty People.


Criminal defense attorneys protect the innocent and guilty alike, but, the majority of criminal defendants are guilty. This is as it should be in a free society. Yet there are many different types of crime and degrees of guilt, and the defense must navigate through a complex criminal justice system that is not always equipped to recognize nuances. Georgetown Law Professor Abbe Smith will read from her new book, Guilty People, which shares compelling stories from her long career as a criminal defender in order to answer the question she’s routinely asked, “How can you defend these people?”

A panel discussion with criminal justice experts will follow.


Abbe Smith, Professor of Law and Director of the Criminal Defense & Prisoner Advocacy Clinic, Georgetown Law

Marc Morje Howard, Professor of Government and Law, and the founding Director of the Prisons and Justice Initiative, Georgetown University

Judith Lichtenberg, Professor of Philosophy, Georgetown University, and teacher at Maryland’s Jessup Correctional Institution and the D.C. Jail

Nathaniel Mensah, Staff Attorney (Trial Division), Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia

David Singleton, Executive Director, Ohio Justice & Policy Center; Professor of Law and Director, Constitutional Litigation Clinic, Northern Kentucky University’s Salmon P. Chase College of Law

Kate Weisburd, Associate Professor of Law, George Washington University School of Law; Founder, Youth Defender Clinic at the East Bay Community Law Center, Berkeley Law; former supervising attorney in Berkeley’s Death Penalty Clinic


Thursday, February 13, 2020
4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Reception to follow.


Georgetown Law
Hotung Dining Room
550 First Street NW
Washington, DC 20001


Media interested in attending should contact