Kathy Swedlow

Kathy Swedlow

Professor

B.S., Carnegie Mellon University 1988
J.D., City University of New York Law School 1993

swedlowk@cooley.edu

Professor Swedlow joined the Cooley faculty in 2001, and currently teaches Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, Death Penalty Law, and Wrongful Convictions. From 2001 to 2005, Professor Swedlow served as the co-director of the Thomas M. Cooley Innocence Project; the Project is responsible for the first DNA exoneration under Michigan's post-conviction DNA testing statute.

Professor Swedlow has also been a contributing editor for the American Bar Association's Preview of United States Supreme Court Decisions; the Vice-Chair of the Death Penalty Committee of the American Bar Association’s Section on Individual Rights and Responsibility; and a Member of the Selection Committee for the American Bar Association's Silver Gavel Awards for Media and the Arts.

Prior to coming to Cooley, Professor Swedlow served as an Assistant Federal Defender in the Capital Habeas Corpus Unit of the Federal Community Defender Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and as a Staff Attorney in both the United States Courts of Appeal for the Second and Third Circuits.

Bibliography

Articles

Pleading Guilty and Being Guilty: A Case for Broader Access to Post-Conviction DNA Testing, 41 No. 6 Criminal Law Bulletin 1 (2005).

Capital Punishment in the 2004 Term, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 8, p. 461 (Aug. 15, 2005).

Forced Medication of Legally Incompetent Prisoners: A Primer, Human Rights, Vol. 30, No. 2 (Spring 2003).

A State by State Review of “Post-Conviction DNA Testing” Statutes, Online Journal of Justice Studies, Vol. 1, No. 1 (2003). 

Don’t Believe Everything You Read: A Review of Modern “Post-Conviction” DNA Testing Statutes, 38 Cal. W. L. Rev. 2 (2002).

The Defendant Has Seemed to Live a Charmed Life: Hopt v. Utah, Territorial Justice, The United States Supreme Court, and Late Nineteenth Century Death Penalty Jurisprudence, 25 Sup. Ct. Rev. 1 (2000).

Suing for Tenure: Legal and Institutional Barriers, 13 Tex. Rev. Litig. 557 (1994).

Book Reviews and Shorter Works

Review of David M. Oshinsky, Capital Punishment on Trial: Furman v. Georgia and the Death Penalty in Modern America, 52 Am. J. Legal History 526 (2012).

When, if Ever, Will Attorney Error Excuse a State Court Procedural Default?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 1, p. 15 (Oct. 3, 2011) (review of Maples v. Thomas, 132 S. Ct. 912 (2012)).

Is a State Procedural Rule Inadequate for Habeas Purposes, Simply Because It Is Discretionary?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 2, p. 97 (Nov. 2, 2009) (review of Beard v. Kindler, 130 S. Ct. 612 (2009)).

When Do Determinations of Mental Retardation Have Preclusive Effect?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 7, p. 425 (Apr. 20, 2009) (review of Bobby v. Bies, 556 U.S. 825 (2009)).

Can a Federally Appointed Lawyer Represent a Capital Defendant in State Clemency Proceedings?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 4, p. 242 (Jan. 12, 2009) (review of Harbison v. Bell, 556 U.S. 180 (2009)).

Must a Federal Habeas Corpus Claim Be Deemed “Procedurally Defaulted” If It Has Been Presented Twice to the Federal Courts?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 3, p. 177 (Dec. 1, 2008) (review of Cone v. Bell, 556 U.S. 449 (2009)).

What is a “Claim” Within the Meaning of the AEDPA?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 2, p. 93 (Nov. 3, 2008) (review of Bell v. Kelly, 555 U.S. 55 (2008)). 

Is It Cruel and Unusual Punishment to Impose the Death Penalty for Child Rape?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 7, p. 357 (Apr. 14, 2008) (review of Kennedy v. Louisiana, 554 U.S. 407 (2008)).

When Have “Adversarial Judicial Proceedings” Commenced so as to Trigger a Criminal Defendant’s Right to Counsel?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 6, p. 286 (Mar. 17, 2008) (review of Rothergy v. Gillespie, 554 U.S. 191 (2008)).

Does the Eighth Amendment Bar Lethal Injection Methods That Pose a Greater Risk of Pain and Suffering than Other Methods?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 4, p. 160 (Jan. 7, 2008) (review of Baze, et al. v. Rees, et al., 553 U.S. 35 (2008)). 

How Should the Armed Career Criminal Act Treat Convictions That Allow Persons to Retain Their Civil Rights?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 2, p. 86 (Oct. 29, 2007) (review of Logan v. United States., 552 U.S. 23 (2007)). 

Do a Prisoner’s Delusions About the Reasons for His Punishment Render Him Incompetent to Be Executed?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 7, p. 376 (Apr. 16, 2007) (review of Panetti v. Quarterman, 551 U.S. 930 (2007)).

Can a Federal Court Overturn a Capital Sentence on the Ground That the Penalty Phase Argument Was Inflammatory?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 6, p. 276 (Mar. 19, 2007) (review of Roper v. Weaver, 550 U.S. 598 (2007)).

Did the Texas Court Fail to Comply with the Supreme Court’s Previous Remand in This Capital Case?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 4, p. 185 (Jan. 8, 2007) (review of Smith v. Texas, 550 U.S. 297 (2007)).

Should a Civil Rights Claim in a Death Penalty Case be Treated as a Habeas Petition?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 7, p. 409 (Apr. 17, 2006) (review of Hill v. McDonough, 547 U.S. 573 (2006)).

May a Statute Require a Sentence of Death When the Mitigating and Aggravating Evidence is in Equipoise?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 7, p. 418 (Apr. 17, 2006) (review of Kansas v. Marsh, 544 U.S. 1060 (2005)) (originally published in Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 3, p. 154 (Nov. 28, 2005)).

What is "Factual Innocence" in the Context of Habeas Corpus, and How Can it Be Established?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 4, p. 187 (Jan. 9, 2006) (review of House v. Bell, 545 U.S. 794 (2005)).

When Can a Capital Resentencing Jury Consider Evidence That Questions the Defendant's Guilt?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 3, p. 148 (Nov. 28, 2005) (review of Oregon v. Guzek, 546 U.S. 517 (2006)).

When is a California Jury's Consideration of an Invalid Aggravating Circumstance Harmless Error?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 1, p. 14 (Sep. 26, 2005) (review of Brown v. Sanders, 546 U.S. 212 (2006)).

May a State Use Inconsistent Theories When Prosecuting Different Defendants in Connection With the Same Crime?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 7, p. 435 (Apr. 18, 2005) (review of Bradshaw v. Stumpf, 545 U.S. 175 (2005)).

When Is a Capital Case Final?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 7, p. 416 (Apr. 18, 2005) (review of Thompson v. Bell, 545 U.S. 794 (2005)).

When Should U.S. Courts Apply Rulings Issued by the International Court of Justice?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 6, p. 341 (Mar. 21, 2005) (review of Medellin v. Dretke, 544 U.S. 660 (2005)).

Can a State Post-Conviction Petition Be “Properly Filed” Under the AEDPA Even if the State Court Finds It Untimely?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 5, p. 281 (Feb. 22, 2005) (review of Pace v. DiGuglielmo, 544 U.S. 408 (2005)).

May the State Force a Defendant to Wear Leg Irons in View of His Capital Sentencing Jury?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 5, p. 286 (Feb. 22, 2005) (review of Deck v. Missouri, 544 U.S. 622 (2005)).

When Must a Jury Be Told the Defendant Will Be Ineligible for Parole If Sentenced to Life?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 4, p. 218 (Jan. 10, 2005) (review of Rompilla v. Beard, 545 U.S. 374 (2005)).

May a Federal Court Hold a Habeas Claim in Abeyance While the Petitioner Exhausts His State Law Claims?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 4, p. 213 (Jan. 10, 2005) (review of Rhines v. Weber, 544 U.S. 269 (2005)).

When Must a Jury Be Allowed to Find a Defendant Guilty of a Lesser-Included Offense?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 3, p. 161 (Nov. 29, 2004) (review of Howell v. Mississippi, 543 U.S. 440 (2005)).

Does California’s Sentencing Scheme Limit a Jury’s Consideration of Post-Crime Mitigation?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 2, p. 107 (Nov. 1, 2004) (review of Brown v. Payton, 544 U.S. 133 (2005)).

When Does Conceding a Client’s Guilt Amount to a Denial of the Right to Counsel?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 2, p. 102 (Nov. 1, 2004) (review of Florida v. Nixon, 543 U.S. 175 (2004)).

Can a State Execute Someone Who Was Under the Age of 18 When He Committed the Capital Crime?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 1, p. 17 (Oct. 4, 2004) (review of Roper v. Simmons, 543 U.S. 551 (2004)).

Did Ring v. Arizona Merely Announce a Nonretroactive Procedural Rule?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 7, p. 408 (Apr. 12, 2004) (review of Schiro v. Summerlin, No. 542 U.S. 348 (2004)).

The Supreme Court Reviews the Fifth Circuit’s Application of Penry I and Penry II, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 6, p. 342 (Mar. 15, 2004) (review of Tennard v. Dretke, 540 U.S. 945 (2003) and Smith v. Dretke, 541 U.S. 913 (2004)).

Did Mills v. Maryland Announce a “New Rule” of Constitutional Criminal Procedure?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 5, p. 257 (Feb. 16, 2004) (review of Beard v. Banks, 542 U.S. 406 (2004)).

When Is a Defendant Responsible for His Attorney’s Failure to Adequately Plead Trial Errors?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 3, p. 145 (Nov. 28, 2003) (review of Banks v. Dretke, 540 U.S. 668 (2004)).

When Can Defense Counsel’s Decision Not to Present Mitigating Evidence Be Challenged as Ineffective Assistance?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 6, p. 328 (March 21, 2003) (review of Wiggins v. Smith, 539 U.S. 510 (2003)).

What Triggers the AEDPA’s Standard of Deferential Review in Capital Cases?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 4, p. 219 (Jan. 6, 2003) (review of Woodford v. Garceau, 538 U.S. 202 (2003)).

When Must a Rule 60(b) Motion Be Deemed a “Second or Successive” Habeas Petition?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 2, p. 68 (Oct. 28, 2003) (review of Abdur’Rahman v. Bell, 537 U.S. 1227 (2003)).

May Capital Sentencing Judges Consider Non-Jury Testimony in Capital Cases?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 7, p. 391 (Apr. 12, 2002) (review of Ring v. Arizona, 536 U.S. 584 (2002)).

Does the Eighth Amendment Bar Executing Mentally Retarded Prisoners Convicted of Capital Offenses?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 5, p. 279  (Feb. 13, 2002) (review of Atkins v. Virginia, 536 U.S. 304 (2002)).

When Must a Jury Be Told That a Defendant Will Be Ineligible for Parole if Sentenced to Life?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 3, p. 141 (Nov. 19, 2001) (review of Kelly v. South Carolina, 534 U.S. 236 (2002)).

When Should a Trial Court Grant a Continuance in Order to Locate Missing Alibi Witnesses?, Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases, Issue No. 2, p. 106 (October 22, 2001) (review of Lee v. Kemna, 534 U.S. 362 (2002)).

Selected Presentations

Ethical Issues in the Representation of Death Row Prisoners, Center for Ethics, Service, and Professionalism “Integrity in Our Communities” Series, Thomas M. Cooley Law School (March 2009; Lansing, MI).

Post-Conviction DNA Laws: Federal and State Experiences, Meeting of the American Society for Law, Medicine and Ethics, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University (September 2005; Cambridge, MA).

On the Docket 2005: The Death Penalty in the Supreme Court, 2005 Annual Meeting of the American Bar Association (August 2005; Chicago, IL).

How an Innocence Project Works, Wayne State University Department of Criminal Justice (March 2005; Detroit, MI).

The Thomas M. Cooley Innocence Project, and Kenneth Wyniemko’s DNA Exoneration, NALS of Michigan Annual Meeting (June 2003; Lansing, MI).

A Review of ‘Modern’ Post-Conviction DNA Statutes, 2002 Meeting of the American Society of Criminology (November 2002; Chicago, IL).

Indigent Defense in Michigan and the Role of the Cooley Innocence Project, Annual Conference of the Michigan Council on Crime and Delinquency (November 2002; Lansing, MI).

Mental Illness and the Death Penalty: Can Capital Punishment for the Seriously Mentally Ill Be Justified?, 2002 Annual Meeting of the American Bar Association (August 2002; Washington D.C.).

Modern Post-Conviction DNA Statutes: A Square Peg Into a Round Hole?, 2002 National Innocence Project Meeting (April 2002; San Diego, CA).

 

Real-World Experience

Specialty: Post-Conviction Litigation

Courses: Cooley Innocence Project


Faculty links

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