Criminal Law and Procedure Courses

Qualifying course offerings can change from semester to semester. For a complete list for the current academic year, check the student handbook or contact the Law School Registrar.


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  • Criminal Defense Practicum I , JURI: 5170S , Credit Hours: 3
    This course offers students an eye-witness, hands-on experience with the criminal justice system from the perspective of a public defender office. Students work with the eighteen attorneys in the Western Judicial Circuit Public Defender Office in Athens (a five minute walk from the Law School). Students assist with the entire range of legal representation of indigent clientsinterviewing clients, interviewing witnesses, conducting other aspects of factual investigation, drafting motions, negotiating pleas, and assisting with trials, drafting appellate briefs. This course is a pre-requisite to Criminal Defense Practicum II, in which students, supervised by a licensed attorney, can represent clients in all manner of court proceedings including jury trials. There are no pre-requisites for this course.  

  • Criminal Defense Practicum II , JURI: 4500S, 4501L , Credit Hours: 4-6
    This course is open only to students who have taken at least one semester of Criminal Defense Practicum I. Students in this course continue to work with individual attorneys in the Western Circuit Public Defender Office in Athens.  Placement in other PD offices in Georgia are available in the summer only. The Criminal Defense Practicum offers an immersion in the criminal justice system from the perspective of a public defender office. Attorneys in the PD office are full-time criminal defense lawyers and therefore are specialists. All of their work concentrates on criminal defense.  Students assist with all aspects of the representation, and under Georgia’s Student Practice Rule students handle preliminary hearings, bond hearings, pre-trial motion hearings such as motions to suppress, trials, pleas, sentencings and probation revocation hearings, and assist with all of the factual and legal investigation which is necessary to effective legal representation. There are no  pre-requisites other than Criminal Defense Clinic I, but Evidence and Criminal Procedure I are very strongly recommended, and a Trial Practice course or Mock Trial experience may be helpful. (4500 is the graded portion of the course, and 4501L is the pass/fail portion. Register for both when registering for this course.)   

  • Criminal Justice Reform , JURI: 4277 , Credit Hours: 2
    This course will explore contemporary criminal justice reform efforts, with an emphasis on the role of race in criminal justice policy and practice. Likely areas of focus include policing, bail and sentencing. Each student will complete a final research project evaluating or proposing a specific reform initiative.

  • Criminal Procedure I , JURI: 4460 , Credit Hours: 3
      A study of criminal process rights that apply during the interaction between law enforcement and individual suspects.  The emphasis is on the the privilege against self-incrimination, the right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure, due process, the right to counsel and other rights that are implicated during the investigation, stop, arrest and interrogation stages of a law enforcement  investigation, typically prior to formal prosecution. 

  • Criminal Procedure II , JURI: 4470 , Credit Hours: 3
    A study of criminal process beginning with bringing of formal charges and concluding with adjudication of the guilt or innocence of the accused. Emphasis on prosecutorial discretion; preliminary hearing and grand jury procedures; joinder and severance; plea bargaining; criminal discovery; right to speedy trial, assistance of counsel, confrontation, and trial by jury; double jeopardy; and sentencing. Criminal Procedure I is not a prerequisite.

  • Evidence , JURI: 4250 , Credit Hours: 3
    Covers rules governing admission and exclusion of testimony, documents, exhibits, expert proof and experiments in criminal and civil cases. Also concerned with mechanics of proof, proper form of objections, order of proof, and burden of proof in criminal and civil trials. The subjects of hearsay, relevancy, character evidence and the law of witness impeachment and cross-examination are explored in detail.

  • Federal Courts , JURI: 4570 , Credit Hours: 3
    This course will focus on the structure, jurisdiction, and powers of federal courts. Coverage will include: development of the federal court system; selection of judges; the judicial power under Article III; justiciability and the case-or-controversy requirement (standing, ripeness, mootness, political questions); the Erie doctrine; federal common law; challenges to jurisdiction; federal question jurisdiction; diversity jurisdiction; venue and transfer; special problems of removal jurisdiction.

  • Immigration Law , JURI: 5890 , Credit Hours: 3
    This course will examine American immigration law and policy. Topics considered include source and scope of Congressional power to regulate immigration; procedures for entry, exclusion, and deportation; refugees and asylum; current immigration law reform; and the role of states in regulating migrants. This course is intended both for those who are considering immigration law as a career and for those who want a general introduction to an important area of law that intersects with many areas of practice, including administrative, criminal, family, employment, and international.

  • International Criminal Law , JURI: 4270 , Credit Hours: 3
    Examined will be the development and jurisprudence of international criminal law: its origins in post-World War II Nuremberg and Tokyo war crimes tribunals; its evolution in post-Cold War tribunals for the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Cambodia, and Lebanon; and its siblings, noncriminal efforts like truth commissions. A focus will be the 10-year-old permanent International Criminal Court: its core crimes and ways persons may be held liable or defend against liability; the roles of actors including ICC prosecutors and defenders, judges, victims, partner organizations like NATO and the United Nations, and countries that belong to the ICC; and the relationship between the ICC and nonmember countries like the United States.

  • Landmark Cases in Criminal Litigation , JURI: 4275 , Credit Hours: 2
    The course examines an array of notable Supreme Court criminal procedure and evidence cases by deeply delving into the litigation and surrounding stories that accompany each case. The course will cover approximately 10-14 landmark cases commonly reviewed in Evidence and Criminal Procedure I and II (Katz, Miranda, Terry, Batson, and Powell, to name a few). Students will be expected to write a paper as well as do a presentation. Laptops are not permitted in class.

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