Death Penalty Report Released at Akin Gump in Washington, D.C.

At a May 7 event held at Akin Gump’s Washington, D.C. office, The Constitution Project’s Death Penalty Committee— a bipartisan, blue-ribbon panel of criminal justice system experts—released  its report “Irreversible Error: Recommended Reforms for Preventing and Correcting Errors in the Administration of Capital Punishment.”

For more than a year, Akin Gump served as counsel to the committee as it created the 217-page report. The firm’s team was led by energy regulation, markets and enforcement practice co-chair Julia Sullivan and litigation senior counsel Nicole Sprinzen. The report is a comprehensive review of the death penalty system within the United States that includes 39 “black letter recommendations” for improving the implementation of capital punishment and a companion analysis supporting those recommendations provided by the Akin Gump team, which also included associates Julia Lippman, Kim Harding, Brittani Head, Stephanie Bazell and Jessica Fitts.

At the event, Anthony Graves, or, as he introduced himself, “Exoneree Number 138,” spoke about his 18 years on death row in Texas. During that time, Mr. Graves refused plea deals for a life sentence. In 2010, he was exonerated after a retrial was ordered, and the new prosecution team found him to be innocent.

In the report, the committee acknowledges Akin Gump’s contributions by thanking the firm, “which provided a team of attorneys, paralegals, legal secretaries and interns to guide The Constitution Project’s Death Penalty Committee in crafting this report,” and noting the “expert guidance and significant time to this effort” offered by Sullivan and Sprinzen.

The release of the report and Akin Gump’s contributions were noted by numerous news organizations, including The National Law Journal.

To view the full video of the event, please click here