J.D. Program

Criminal Clinical Program

Students enrolled in the Criminal Law clinics carry full responsibility for the prosecution or defense of criminal cases in Municipal and Juvenile Boston or Quincy District Courts. Under direct faculty supervision, students serve as defense counsel or student prosecutor, gaining hands-on experience in the following:

  • The Salvati Case: How BU Law alumni freed an innocent man from prisonConducting investigations
  • Formulating trial strategy
  • Filing and arguing pretrial motions
  • Participating in plea bargaining
  • Trying cases
  • Making sentencing arguments
  • Drafting appellate briefs

Students may choose from three different programs within the Criminal Law Clinic:

  • Prosecutor Program - Prosecute criminal cases in Quincy District Court and draft appellate briefs.
  • Public Defender Program (Adult) - Represent criminal defendants and negotiate plea agreements in Boston Municipal Court.
  • Public Defender Program (Juvenile) - Represent juvenile defendants charged with offenses in Boston Juvenile Court and help young clients understand the consequences of their behavior.

Learn more about the courts where you will practice.

There are two tracks for completion:

  • Second-year track: This track begins in the spring semester of a student's second-year and is completed in the fall semester of the third-year. This track is an Intensive Program in Criminal Trial Advocacy, and students are immersed in the practice of criminal law.
  • Third-year track: Available to third-year students, this track offers exposure to the program but does not require as many credits. The program begins with classroom work in the fall semester and culminates in trial work in the spring semester.

Students participating in the Criminal Law Clinics are eligible for the Concentration in Litigation and Dispute Resolution.

Learn more about the Criminal Law Clinic.