In 2005, Sidley undertook a firmwide Capital Litigation Project, partnering with the Equal Justice Initiative in Alabama after an appeal from the Director of the ABA’s Death Penalty Representation Project. Sidley’s Capital Litigation Project is a long-term, resource-intensive undertaking that provides hope to inmates incarcerated on Alabama’s death row. Through the project, Sidley teams of lawyers and legal assistants from across Sidley’s domestic offices have represented 21 prisoners, traveling to Alabama to visit their clients, interview witnesses, and participate in hearings. Since the Project’s inception, more than 100 Sidley partners, counsel and associates, along with legal assistants and project assistants, have volunteered more than 110,000 hours to these cases. In 2013, lawyers donated more than 11,000 hours to the representation of these men on death row. The project, spearheaded by partner John Gallo, is managed by lawyer Kelly Huggins.
Sidley’s ability to represent Alabama’s death row inmates effectively has been greatly aided by the firm’s partnership with the Equal Justice Initiative of Alabama, a nonprofit organization that provides ongoing guidance to Sidley’s lawyers on Alabama post-conviction practice and procedure. In addition, one of Sidley’s Capital Litigation teams includes in-house lawyers from one of the firm’s largest clients. The relationship between Sidley’s lawyers and the client’s in-house lawyers strengthens as they work together to represent a client who face the ultimate penalty.
For recent Capital Litigation Project cases, go to page 10 of the 2015 Pro Bono and Community Service Report.