Leo S. Jones spent four months in jail, accused of a probation that had long since expired. His incarceration was illegal. It was also preventable.
In this essay, I describe the unique data collection project that identified Mr. Jones’ case. Then, I analyze the various individual, institutional, and systemic practices that contributed to Mr. Jones’ illegal incarceration. I show how an investigation of Mr. Jones’ case led to the discovery of widespread latent errors that may have adversely affected innumerable other detainees. I conclude by explaining what this case reveals about how data collection and analysis can improve public defender practice.
Albany Law Review
data collection, public defender, incarceration, probation violation, Katrina-Gideon Interview project
Pamela R. Metzger, Me and Mr. Jones: A Systems-Based Analysis of a Catastrophic Defense Outcome, 78 Alb. L. Rev. 1261 (2014)