In 2022, WDA and the Seattle Clemency Project (SCP), assisted with support from the State Office of Public Defense (OPD), created The Redemption Project of Washington (RPW). RPW is a new pilot project that aims to uplift second chances and to support individuals going back to court for resentencing hearings. WDA has two major components in RPW’s work.
Case Support- Resentencing: WDA Is Assisting Defense Attorneys and Teams with Resentencing Hearings in Washington State
In recent years, court decisions and legislative changes have resulted in numerous individuals having an opportunity for a second chance by going back to court for a resentencing hearing. At WDA, we have added two staff positions dedicated to providing support to attorneys and defense team members working on felony resentencing cases.
You can reach Cindy Arends Elsberry, WDA Resentencing Resource Attorney, at email@example.com.
You can reach Percy Levy, WDA Community Outreach Specialist at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cindy and Percy are currently available to consult with defense attorneys and teams on felony resentencing cases. They can assist with legal issues and strategies, finding evidence of mitigation, telling the client’s story of transformation and rehabilitation, building reentry plans, and with engaging community members and organizations to show support for the client at resentencing hearings.
Join RPW for a a monthly First Friday meetup to discuss resentencing and second look cases. Click here to learn more.
WDA’s Immigration Project Is Assisting with Postconviction Relief for Noncitizens in Washington State
Since 1983, defense counsel has had a duty to inform clients about the immigration consequences of their plea; however, that duty was misunderstood by many attorneys as being outside of the scope of their representation as it was viewed as a collateral consequence of a conviction. The U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Padilla underscored that it was not a collateral consequence and that no advice or false advice would be grounds for appeal. Now, WDA is helping individuals who did not get immigration advice and who had adverse immigration consequences get back into court.
In partnership with the with the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, Redemption Project Washington will focus on getting noncitizen clients back into court to remedy the adverse immigration consequences that came from their criminal convictions. At WDA, we have an attorney providing support and advice to attorneys working on postconviction relief for noncitizen clients.
You can reach Sarah Hudson, WDA Immigration Resource Attorney, at email@example.com. Sarah is available to assist with training and to consult on postconviction relief cases.
About Time: How Long and Life Sentences Fuel Mass Incarceration in Washington State, ACLU-Washington and Dr. Katherine Beckett.