March 12, 2005
CrimProf Spotlight: Texas Tech's Larry Cunningham
"I grew up on Long Island and went to college at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, one of the senior colleges of the City University of New York. I knew early on that I wanted to study and work in the criminal justice system. Originally, I thought about going the route of becoming a cop or getting a Ph.D., but then a series of internships convinced me to go to law school. I went to Georgetown where, apart from being scared to death by my CivPro and Contracts profs, I had a great time. I found my niche by taking small classes and seminars. The one-on-one interaction with faculty was priceless. I worked part-time as a backup reader to Judge David S. Tatel, a blind judge on the D.C. Circuit. What an amazing experience, to work directly with a brilliant and accomplished jurist. I was also fortunate to get into the Juvenile Justice Clinic, where I represented accused juvenile delinquents in D.C. Superior Court. That experience introduced me to juvenile justice, an interest which has carried over into my writing and teaching as a CrimProf. Following graduation, I clerked for Chief Judge Claude Hilton of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia where I was fortunate to work on a variety of cases. From there, I served as a prosecutor in the Alexandria,Virginia, Commonwealth Attorney's Office, where my primary responsibility was to prosecute juvenile offenders. This experience was amazing because it gave me the opportunity to try cases (a great thrill!), to make a difference in my community, and to further study the juvenile justice system from the trenches. After 2 years in the position, I decided to leave the trenches and join the faculty of Texas Tech Law School. One should keep in mind that this New York boy had not set foot in the state of Texas until the day he interviewed in Lubbock. Although the adjustment to Lubbock has been challenging at times, I have really enjoyed teaching. I primarily teach in clinic, however I also teach Criminal Law to 1Ls and an elective course to upperyears. Last year, I ran our Criminal Prosecution Clinic. This year, I am running our Criminal Justice Clinic. My primary areas of scholarship interest include juvenile justice, ethics (particularly police and prosecutorial ethics), criminal law, and assorted random subjects like canon law, animal law, and Indian law. This Fall I am developing a course called "Criminal Prosecution: Ethics and Skills." As the name sounds, the course will combine discussion and training in ethics as well as the skills that prosecutors need on a day-to-day basis. This summer, I will be visiting at Stetson University College of Law, teaching Criminal Law.
On a personal level, I am the proud owner of two cats and a dog (pictures here: they are my "babies.")
My articles include:
Hitting the Ground Running: The Use of Boot Camps and Pre-Semester
Orientation Periods in Clinics and Externships, ____ MISS. L.J. ____
(forthcoming Spring 2005)
The Case Against Dog Breed Discrimination in the Provision of Homeowners' Insurance, 11 CONN. INS. L.J. 1 (2004-5).
Substantive Limitations on the Power of Family Courts to Commit Delinquent Juveniles to State Custody: Analysis and Critique, 55 SYRACUSE L. REV. 87
When Lawyers Break the Law: How the D.C. Court of Appeals Disciplines
Members of the Bar Who Commit Crimes, 6 U.D.C. L. REV. 9 (2002)
Deputization of Indian Prosecutors: Protecting Indian Interests in Federal Court, 88 GEO. L.J. 2187 (2000)
Taking on Testilying: The Prosecutor's Response to In-Court Police
Deception, 18 CRIM. JUST. ETHICS 26 (Winter/Spring 1999)
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