Jenny M. Roberts
Professor of Law
Office: Room 431
Jenny Roberts, Professor of Law, co-directs the Criminal Justice Clinic and teaches Advanced Criminal Procedure: Plea Bargaining. Her research focuses on the right to counsel, misdemeanors and the lower criminal courts, collateral consequences of criminal convictions, and indigent defense. Her articles have been cited by the U.S. Supreme Court, a number of state high and lower federal courts, and in numerous briefs to the Supreme Court and other courts. She recently co-authored Collateral Consequences of Criminal Convictions: Law, policy and Practice (West 2013).
Professor Roberts is co-Vice President of the Clinical Legal Education Association, the nation's largest association of law teachers. She currently serves as the Reporter for the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL), Task Force on Restoration of Rights and Status After Conviction, which is holding a series of regional hearings and will issue a report about how legal mechanisms for relief from the collateral consequences of criminal convictions are actually working in state and federal systems. She sits on the board of the Mid-Atlantic Innocence Project and is a member of the Academic Advisory Board for the NACDL's "Getting Scholarship into Courts Project."
Professor Roberts previously taught at Syracuse University and in NYU's Lawyering program. Prior to teaching, she was a Senior Research Fellow at NYU Law School's Center for Research in Crime & Justice, a public defender in Manhattan, and a law clerk in the Southern District of New York.
Areas of Specialization
- Clinical Legal Education
- Criminal Law
- Criminal Procedure
- Sentencing Law
Degrees & Universities
- J.D., New York University School of Law (magna cum laude, Order of the Coif)
- B.A., Yale University (cum laude)
- Jenny M. Roberts, Effective Plea Bargaining Counsel, Yale L.J. (forthcoming 2013).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Crashing the Misdemeanor System, Wash. & Lee L. Rev. (forthcoming 2013).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Margaret Colgate Love, & Cecelia Klingele, Collateral Consequences of Criminal Convictions: Law, Policy, & Practice (West Publications 2013).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Why Misdemeanors Matter: Defining Effective Advocacy in the Lower Criminal Courts, 45 UC Davis L. Rev. 277 (2011).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Amicus brief to United States Supreme Court in Smith v. Cain, 2011 WL 3739380 (Aug. 19, 2011).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Proving Prejudice, Post-Padilla, 54 How. L.J. 693 (2011).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Ignorance is Effectively Bliss: Collateral Consequences of Criminal Convictions, Silence and Misinformation in the Guilty Plea Process, 95 Iowa L. Rev. 119 (2009).
- Jenny M. Roberts, The Mythical Divide Between Collateral and Direct Consequences of Criminal Convictions: Involuntary Commitment of “Sexually Violent Predators, 93 Minn. L. Rev. 670 (2008).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Little, Too Late: Ineffective Assistance of Counsel, the Duty to Investigate, and Pretrial Discovery in Criminal Cases, 31 Fordham Urb. L.J. 1097 (2004).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Commentator, "Consequences of the Economic Crisis on Criminal Law in France" (presented by Prof. Pascal Beauvais), faculty exchange with Université Paris Ouest Nanterre la Défense (American University Washington College of Law, Mar. 22, 2012).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Testimony, Bill to Amend “Unit” Rule in Maryland State Expungement Law (Judicial Proceedings Committee, Maryland State Senate, Annapolis, Md., Mar. 1, 2012).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Presentation, Decriminalization Efforts in Jurisdictions Around the US (ABA State Implementation Project Roundtable (Co-organized with Andrew Taslitz and Angela Davis), American University Washington College of Law, D.C., Feb. 3, 2012).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Speech, Plea Bargaining (discussion with Prof. Stephanos Bibas, moderated by Prof. Kate Stith) (Criminal Justice Theory & Practice Workshop, Yale Law School, Dec. 7, 2011).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Workshop, Collateral Consequences of Criminal Convictions: Law, Theory, & Practice (Clinical Law Review Writer’s Workshop, NYU School of Law, Oct. 1, 2011).
- Jenny M. Roberts, , Faculty Exchange with Adam Mickiewicz University law faculty (Sept. 23-27, 2011.) (Poznan, Poland).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Commentator, American Bar Association Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admission to the Bar’s Petition for Renewal of Recognition [On Behalf of Clinical Legal Education Association] (Dept. of Education’s National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality & Integrity, Alexandria, Va., June 9, 2011).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Commentator, Paper Presentation by Prof. Fuchino, "The Japanese Pretrial Conference: Does it Infringe on the Presumption of Innocence?" (Faculty Colloquium Exchange with University of Ritsumeikan School of Law (Kyoto, Japan) at American University Washington College of Law, Feb. 24, 2011).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Presentation, Why Misdemeanors Matter (Faculty Colloquium, William & Mary School of Law, Feb. 17. 2011) (Williamsburg, Va.).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Speech, Proving Prejudice, Post-Padilla (7th Annual Wiley A. Branton/Howard L. J. Symposium, Howard Law School, Oct. 29, 2010).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Moderator, New Scholars in Criminal Procedure (paper presentations) (Southeastern Association of Law Schools, Annual Conference, Aug. 2010) (Palm Beach, Fla.).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Commentator, Panel on Legal Education, Criminal Law and Procedural Law (Comparative Perspectives on Legal Education, Washington College of Law Faculty Roundtable Series (with University of Carlos III Law School and University of Chile Law School), Jan. 2010).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Presentation, Why Misdemeanors Matter (Panel on "Race, Class, and Injustice from Arrest through Post-Conviction: Ideas for the New Administration", LatCrit XIV, Oct. 2009).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Presentation, Why Misdemeanors Matter (AALS Clinical Conference, May 2009) (Cleveland, Ohio).
- Jenny M. Roberts, Presentation, The Mythical Divide Between Direct and Collateral Consequences of Criminal Convictions: Involuntary Commitment of ‘Sexually Violent Predators (AALS Clinical Conference, May 2008) (Tucson, Ariz.).
Selected Media Appearances
- Jenny M. Roberts, Commentator, WCL faculty colloquium, Prof. Carol Steiker, Harvard Law, “Proportionality as a Limit on Preventive Justice: Promises and Pitfalls,” (American University Washington College of Law, Mar. 2, 2012).
- Commentary: Ineffective Assistance of Counsel – Lafler and Frye (SCOTUSblog.com Nov. 1, 2011) (Solicited comment).
- Supreme Court to Weigh Effects of Bad Plea Advice (N.Y. Times Oct. 30, 2011) (Newspaper Interview).
- Adam Liptak, Supreme Court to Weigh Effects of Bad Plea Advice, NY Times A13 (Oct. 30, 2011).