OJD Week in Review: May 13 – 17

Happy Friday!  This week we’ve got quite a few new nuggets to share.  There is a new resource from NJDC worth noting, a webinar offering CLE credit, and a training in Rutherford from OJD.  Also, check out the new tip of the week and reminders from the previous weeks.

We also want to bring attention to yesterday’s post regarding the Juvenile Training Immersion Program (JTIP) hosted last month in conjunction with the National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) at North Carolina Central University.  JTIP was one of the first steps in OJD’s strategic plan to address changes that can/will come as a result of Raise the Age.  Please read the full post here if you have not had a chance to yet!

Group photo of new N.C. regional trainers and NJDC JTIP trainers.

Tip of the Week – Suppression

Suppression motions aren’t often used in the District Court setting (outside DWI cases), however juvenile court offers many opportunities for suppression.  The juvenile code outlines the procedure for filing a motion to suppress (§7B-2408.5) and it may be made either in writing before the adjudicatory hearing or orally during the hearing.  Consider whether or not your client’s statement or identifications may be subject to suppression.  Remember – “in custody” is an objective test!  The test is whether a “reasonable juvenile” in the position of the respondent would believe him/herself to be in custody OR that s/he had been deprived of freedom of action in some significant way, and is not based on the subjective intent of the interrogator or the perception of the person under questioning.  That means if your client is in the principal’s office and the SRO is standing in front of the door, would your client feel free to leave?

Job and Fellowship Opportunity

Today is the last day to submit your application for the Louisiana Center for Children’s Rights (LCCR)’s mitigation specialist positions in New Orleans and Baton Rouge.  The mitigation specialists will be responsible for the investigation and development of competent, thorough, and quality mitigation in accordance with statewide performance standards, the American Bar Association Guidelines, and national best practices.  To apply, please check here to apply for the New Orleans position and here to apply for the Baton Rouge opening.

The North Carolina Commission on Racial and Ethnic Disparities in the Criminal Justice System (NCCRED) has an opening for a new Executive Director.  The Executive Director will provide leadership and manage all aspects of the organization, including coordinating and filing reports, developing relationships with potential partners, promoting and developing research on racial disparities, and supervising interns and contract staff.  The ideal candidate will have a passion for racial justice, experience in criminal justice reform and all aspects of nonprofit organizational management, excellent communication skills and comfort with managing conflict.  Please find the full job description here.  To apply please submit resume, cover letter, and salary requirements to James E. Williams, Jr., by SaturdayJune 1.  Please include email subject line “NCCRED Director Position.”


The Forsyth County Public Defender’s Office is currently seeking a new assistant public defender.  The selected candidate will represent indigent clients charged with misdemeanor criminal offenses and will be expected to analyze laws, facts, written documents, conduct legal research, develop litigation strategies.   For the full job description and to apply, please go here.


On Monday, May 20, OJD will be hosting a Juvenile Court Basics Training in Rutherfordton.  The training will take place at the Rutherford County Courthouse from 2 – 4 p.m. and has already been approved for 2 general CLE credit hours.  Juvenile Defender Eric Zogry will be discussing topics such as how to talk to juvenile clients, dispositions, appeals, and more.  Please call our office at 919-890-1650 if you have questions regarding the training or email Marcus Thompson.

Registration is now open for the 2019 Summer Criminal Law Update Webinar which will take place June 7 from 1:30 to 3 p.m.  This webinar will cover recent criminal law decisions issued by the North Carolina appellate courts and U.S. Supreme Court and will highlight significant criminal law legislation enacted by the North Carolina General Assembly.  School of Government criminal law experts John Rubin and Phil Dixon will discuss a wide range of issues affecting felony and misdemeanor cases in the North Carolina state courts.  The webinar, broadcast live from the School of Government, includes a dynamic visual presentation, live audio, and interactive Q&A.  This webinar is open to public defenders, private attorneys who handle or are interested in pursuing indigent criminal defense work, and other court personnel who handle criminal cases.  Please note that pre-registration is required and the deadline to register will be 5 p.m., June 5.  The webinar will offer 1.5 hours of CLE credit and qualifies for N.C. State Bar criminal law specialization credit.  The registration fee for private assigned counsel, contract attorneys, and other non-IDS employees is $75.00.  There is no registration fee for IDS state employees, thanks to support from the Office of Indigent Defense Services.  If you have questions related to webinar content, please contact John Rubin at 919.962.2498 or rubin@sog.unc.edu.  If you have questions about logistics, please Jessica O’Sullivan at 919.962.9754 or josullivan@sog.unc.edu.


Please save the dates for the 2019 Parent Attorney and Juvenile Defender Conferences.  The Parent Attorney Conference will be held Thursday, August 8 and the Juvenile Defender Conference will be held Friday, August 9.  Both conferences, cosponsored by the School of Government and the Office of Indigent Defense Services, will be held at the School of Government on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus, and offer approximately six hours of CLE credit.  The Parent Attorney Conference provides training for attorneys, who represent parents in abuse, neglect, dependency, and termination of parental rights proceedings.  The Juvenile Defender Conference provides training for attorneys who represent children in delinquency proceedings.  If you have any questions, please contact Program Manager Kate Jennings, or if you have questions about the course content, please contact Program Attorney Austine Long.

The online registration deadline for the 2019 Defender Trial School, cosponsored by the School of Government and the North Carolina Office of Indigent Defense Services, will be June 25.  The event will be held Monday, July 8, through Friday, July 12, at the School of Government on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus.  Defender Trial School participants will use their own cases to develop a cohesive theory of defense at trial and apply that theory through all stages of trial, including voir dire, opening and closing arguments, and direct and cross-examination. The program will offer roughly 29 hours of general CLE credit.  The Defender Trial School is open to public defenders and a limited number of private attorneys who perform a significant amount of appointed work.  IDS has expanded the number of fellowships available to cover the registration fee, but please note there is a limited number of fellowships.  If you have any questions or would like additional information, please email Kate Jennings or Professor John Rubin or call 919-962-3287/919-962-2498.  To register, find a fellowship application, see the agenda, or find any other information, please check out the course page here.

The Center for Juvenile Justice Reform (CJJR)‘s Youth in Custody Certificate Program will be held July 22 – 26 at Georgetown University in partnership with Council of Juvenile Correctional Administrators.  This training is designed to help juvenile justice system leaders and partners improve outcomes for youth in custodial settings, covering critical areas including racial and ethnic disparities, family engagement, assessment, case planning, facility-based education and treatment services, reentry planning and support, and culture change.

New Resource

To commemorate the 52nd Anniversary of In re Gault this week, the National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) is pleased to share a new resource, Making the Case for Young Clients: Supreme Court Quotes for Bolstering Juvenile Defense Advocacy.  Language shapes every defense.  And the United States Supreme Court has issued numerous opinions with language that supports the unique advocacy required for defending youth in juvenile delinquency proceedings.  From recognizing that youth are more susceptible to coercion during an interrogation to reinforcing the principle that youth are constitutionally different from adults, the Supreme Court has boldly delineated the rights and obligations due to young people.  This resource is filled with language from opinions spanning several decades and is accessible online here.

Also, please note that the application period for specialization in juvenile defense started on the 1st of this month and continues until July 2!  If you know someone or if you yourself are interested in specializing in the juvenile defense arena, please visit the N.C. State Bar Legal Specialization page.

That’s our wrap-up for this week.  Please make sure to subscribe to the blog if you haven’t already and head over to Twitter and Facebook, like and follow us!  Also, N.C. juvenile defenders, please contact us to be added to our listserv.  Have a great weekend.

OJD and NJDC Host Training to Prepare for Raising the Age

NJDC’s Amanda Powell engages in discussion with trainees

With Raise the Age’s full implementation now only several months away, OJD has been diligent in rolling out its North Carolina Juvenile Defender State Enhancement Program (SEP).  As part of this initiative, from Apr. 24 – 26 the Office of Juvenile Defender (OJD) partnered with the National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) to teach 10 dedicated N.C. juvenile defense attorneys NJDC’s Juvenile Training Immersion Program (JTIP).

During the three-day training program, three NJDC trainers engaged juvenile defenders in various hands-on activities and discussions in preparation to be effective regional trainers of other defenders across the state.  Discussions ranged from the difficulties of representing juveniles to cultivating showmanship and employing adult learning theory.  Defenders were also put into pairs and small groups for some activities to encourage collaboration.

As one of the first pieces in the SEP project, funded by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), the purpose of JTIP was to allow OJD to offer more quality training to defenders statewide, while also providing more support from defenders who practice in the communities and regions they will train in.  JTIP is meant specifically for trainer presentation, but does not offer substantive training on the new law.

NJDC’s Amanda Powell discusses showmanship.

Also as a result of the OJJDP grant, Project Attorney Monique Williams joined the OJD team earlier this year.  As project attorney, she has done extensive investigations of juvenile courts in multiple counties, collected data, and devised new training to prepare N.C. juvenile defenders for the full implementation of Raise the Age.

“The JTIP training was absolutely the highlight of my tenure here as the Project Attorney for the OJJDP grant,” said Williams.  “I was able to sit in on some of the sessions, and the vast materials and concepts imparted by NJDC to our N.C. attorneys will not only enhance their instructional facilitation skills, but their practice skills as well.  I am certain that juvenile advocates across the state of N.C. will be educated and empowered by the content that will be shared with them in the coming future, and I am excited to see the positive impact in representation for our clients.”

Dorothy Hairston Mitchell, assistant clinical professor of law and supervising attorney of the Juvenile Law Clinic at North Carolina Central University (NCCU), was among the 10 participants selected for the program.  Mitchell and other members of NCCU’s staff were instrumental in assisting with preparations for the training.

“[North Carolina Central University] was so excited to host this training and the collaboration, working with Monique and everybody, was phenomenal,” Mitchell said.  “As a participant, I thought it was also phenomenal…  Really well put together.  I appreciated the way that they grouped us, they had us partnered up and, at least for my partner, I think we were perfectly paired.  And all of the people in our group, it seemed like everyone felt the same way…  I have not been to too many trainings where I come out like ‘Oh, my God, every single moment was just great!’, and this was one of them.”

From right to left: NJDC’s Kristina Kersey, Tim Curry and Amanda Powell, and OJD’s Monique Williams

Although JTIP offers a more intensive 40-lesson program that spans multiple weeks, NJDC agreed to condense the training for the N.C. attorneys, providing them with the additional information, but simplifying the presentation to fit the three-day window.  Mitchell also stated that she was interested in learning more, saying that while she appreciated the experience, extending the training would have been the only thing she would have changed.  “It was very intense the way it was, but I would’ve appreciated [the longer training].  It was so good, that I had a longing for what we didn’t get.”

With JTIP now completed, the next steps in the SEP are to provide the regional and local trainings and follow up with trainers for future site visits.  Williams will also conduct further court observations, post-training evaluations, and surveys to help OJD assess what areas juvenile defenders may need more training in following Raise the Age’s full implementation.

Group photo of new N.C. regional trainers and NJDC JTIP trainers.



OJD Week in Review: Dec. 31 – Jan. 4

Happy New Year!  We’re starting the year off with a great new podcast, a couple of training and job opportunity reminders, a new free resource and a new tip for you (just because we know you’ve been missing them for the last few weeks).

tips memeTip of the Week – Before You Plea

Talk to your client about the impacts of an adjudication.  While not as public as adult criminal convictions, juvenile adjudications may impact the following: immigration status, educational placement, housing conditions, eligibility to play sports, placement on a sex offender registry (in N.C. or other states) and others.  Always consider the long-term consequences of what may first appear to be a short-term decision.

New Resources

Before the close of 2018, we had the pleasure of sitting down with forensic psychologist Dr. Cindy Cottle, to discuss juvenile psychological development on our podcast.  In this new segment, we talk about Roper v. Simmons, what juvenile defenders should know before contacting an evaluator, the impact that involvement in our current juvenile justice system can have on the mental health of youth, and much more.  You can listen to the podcast here.


While not exactly a new resource, we wanted to make sure everyone was aware that the School of Government’s Legislative Reporting Service (LRS) is now FREE!  This site provides legislative summaries of everything coming out of the N.C. General Assembly including filed bills, committee substitutes and amendments, floor amendments, and conference reports.  The site also offers tools to assist you in organizing the bills and reports that most interest you.  You can check it out here.

Job Opportunities

Juvenile Law Center in Pennsylvania is currently accepting applications for a Staff Attorney, who will work in a highly collegial atmosphere with attorneys, communications, development, and operations staff, and in partnership with colleagues around the state and country.  The work will include litigation, policy advocacy, public education, media advocacy, legal and non-legal writing, training, technical assistance, coordinating state or national reform efforts including organizing and facilitating meetings, and other duties as assigned.  The Staff Attorney will think strategically about opportunities to advocate for child welfare and justice systems that are developmentally appropriate, racially equitable, and supportive of youth, families and communities.  Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until Friday, Jan. 11.  To apply, please go here.

On Dec. 1, Indigent Defense Services (IDS) issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) in Caswell, Person, Alamance, Orange, and Chatham counties.  The current contracts for adult noncapital criminal cases at the trial level and per session court cases in those districts will expire on May 31, 2019 and renew on June 1, 2019.  The RFP (RFP #16-0002R) seeks services for adult noncapital criminal cases at the trial level, juvenile delinquency, abuse/neglect/dependency and termination of parental rights, and treatment courts.  Please note that the RFP will not seek offers for potentially capital cases at the trial level, direct appeals or post-conviction cases.  Also, the juvenile delinquency RFP will only include Caswell, Alamance, and Person counties.  The deadline for electronic offers is Feb. 15.  To access the RFP, please check here.


The deadline for applications for the 2019 Juvenile Training Immersion Program (JTIP) Summer Academy is Sunday, Jan. 13.  The JTIP Summer Academy is an annual seven-day intensive training program comprised of sessions from the JTIP curriculum, developed by the National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) in conjunction with experts and practitioners from around the country.  It is intended for attorneys who currently defend youth in juvenile court proceedings.  The Academy is targeted at both new and experienced juvenile defenders.  New defenders will develop the skills they need to zealously represent their clients.  More experienced juvenile defenders will have the opportunity to refine their skills and enhance their effectiveness by employing defense strategies that incorporate the unique aspects of representing youth in delinquency cases.  The program is also designed to build community and equip juvenile defenders with skills they can share with colleagues in their home state.  The JTIP Summer Academy is co-hosted by the National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) and Georgetown Law’s Juvenile Justice Clinic & Initiative.  To apply, please find a PDF version of the application here.

Save the date!  The 2019 Regional Training for Indigent Defense: Special Issues in Complex Felony Cases will be held on March 21 at the East Carolina Heart Institute at East Carolina University in Greenville, N.C.  The training will focus on topics relevant to criminal law practitioners and is open to IDS contract attorneys and privately assigned counsel.  Participants will receive three general CLE credit hours.  Registration should open later this month.


That is our wrap-up for the first Friday of 2019!  Please check us out on Twitter and join us on the OJD Facebook page for other news and updates throughout the week and we will have more to come soon.

OJD Week in Review: Dec. 11-15

This week, as we get closer to Christmas, our gifts to you are… more reminders for training!


Training Now and For the Year to Come

The National Juvenile Defender Center and the Georgetown Law Juvenile Justice Clinic are now accepting applications for the 2018 Juvenile Training Immersion Program (JTIP) Summer Academy.  This annual week-long intensive training offers juvenile defenders a specially-tailored curriculum developed by juvenile defense experts from across the country that will enhance the defenders’ ability to provide the best representation for their clients.  The 2018 JTIP Summer Academy will be held at Georgetown Law in Washington, D.C. from June 10-16.  This event is open exclusively to frontline defenders.  Applications must be submitted to lawjtipsummer@georgetown.edu no later than Jan. 15, 2018, and a nonrefundable $200 deposit is required for each participant upon registration, which will cover training materials and CLE credit approval.  All participants will be responsible for their own housing and travel expenses, and should plan accordingly to attend for the full week.  To apply and to find more details, please find an application here or you may also visit their website.  Also, check out Drew Kukorowski’s post where he briefly recounts his experience in the program in 2016, which can be found here on our blog.

Registration is now open for the Judicial Institute on Domestic Child Sex Trafficking.  Hosted by the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges in collaboration with the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) and Rights4Girls, this interactive training will include hypothetical scenarios, case scenarios, lectures, small group discussions, and practical courtroom exercises focused on the issue of child sex trafficking in the U.S.  This free training will be held in Asheville on Feb. 12-14.  Judges and judicial officers are encouraged to register here.

On Dec. 19, from 3-4 p.m. OJJDP in collaboration with The Innocent Justice Foundation will host a free webinar titled “Maintaining Your Balance – Resiliency Action Plan.”  This webinar is intended to assist law enforcement and other juvenile justice professionals in developing a resiliency action plan to help them succeed in both their professional and personal lives after experiencing “vicarious trauma due to their work regarding commercial sexual exploitation of children and violence and abuse against children.”  To register for this please check out their website here.

Registration is now officially open for “Regional Training for Indigent Defense:  Defending Sexual Offenses”, hosted by the UNC School of Government.  This CLE will focus on defending sexual offenses with sessions on physical evidence, cross-examining experts, and motions and legal issues.  The event will be held on Feb. 8, 2018 at 1801 Nash St., Sanford, N.C. in the Dennis A. Wicker Civic Center.  This program is open to all IDS contract attorneys and privately assigned counsel representing indigent clients and will offer 3.0 hours of CLE credit.  There is an $85 registration fee that will cover CLE credits, snacks, and materials.  The deadline for registration will be 5 p.m. on Jan. 29, 2018.  Please find further details and register here.

That wraps up this week.  While news may be light in the juvenile defense community as we round out the year, we will do our best to keep everyone updated and reminded of the training and job opportunities available.  Be sure to like and subscribe to our social media channels, and we will have more to come soon!

Applications Are Open for 2018 JTIP Summer Academy


The National Juvenile Defender Center and the Georgetown Law Juvenile Justice Clinic are now accepting applications for the 2018 Juvenile Training Immersion Program (JTIP) Summer Academy.  This annual week-long intensive training offers juvenile defenders a specially-tailored curriculum developed by juvenile defense experts from across the country that will enhance their ability to provide the best representation for their clients.  The 2018 JTIP Summer Academy will be held at Georgetown Law in Washington, D.C. from June 10-16.

This event is open exclusively to frontline defenders.  Applications must be submitted to lawjtipsummer@georgetown.edu no later than Jan. 15, 2018, and a nonrefundable $200 deposit is required for each participant upon registration, which will cover training materials and CLE credit approval.  All participants will be responsible for their own housing and travel expenses, and should plan accordingly to attend for the full week.  To apply and to find more details, please find an application here or you may also visit their website.

Also, for those of you who are unfamiliar with the program and hesitant about applying, one juvenile defender, Drew Kukorowski of the Council for Children’s Rights, reflected on his own experiences during the 2016 JTIP Summer Academy.  He stated that it is “exhausting, but it’s also exhilarating” and “was without question the most informative, innovative, and practical legal training I’ve ever attended.”  In his writing, which can be found here on our blog, Kukorowski encourages all defenders to apply to the program.

2017 JTIP Summer Academy Is Now Accepting Applications

The National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) and the Georgetown Law Juvenile Justice Clinic have just announced that they are accepting applications for the 2017 Juvenile Training Immersion Program (JTIP) Summer Academy.  The JTIP Summer Academy, described as an “intensive and interactive juvenile defender training program”, will be held at Georgetown Law in Washington, D.C. from June 11-17, 2017.

New and experienced front-line defenders are encouraged to apply using the PDF found here (please save file as First Name Last Name), and all applications are to be submitted to lawjtipsummer@georgetown.edu no later than January 13th, 2017, 11:59 PM EST.  Participants will be required to cover their own travel expenses and accommodations and pay a nonrefundable $200 tuition fee for the JTIP Summer Academy.  Space is limited and only selected participants can be accommodated for the event.  Selected attendees must also plan to attend the event for the entire week.

Drew Kukorowski of the Council for Children’s Rights recounted some of his experiences in an OJD blog post after participating in the week-long program earlier this year.  He stated that it is “exhausting, but it’s also exhilarating” and “was without question the most informative, innovative, and practical legal training I’ve ever attended”.  Drew also encourages all defenders in N.C. to apply for next summer’s program.

You can find more details about the upcoming summer program below and in the links above.



  • Years and scope of experience in defense practice;
  • Years and scope of experience in juvenile defense practice;
  • Current juvenile caseload;
  • Geographic location;
  • Public defenders and private practitioners;
  • Diversity.



Application Deadline – January 13th, 2017, 11:59 PM EST

Admission decisions announced – February 17, 2017

Deadline for admitted applicants to register and pay – April 3, 2017

Summer Academy – June 11-17, 2017 at Georgetown Law, Washington, DC 



Must be a front-line defender to apply.