Welcome to IncarcerationTransparency.org, we hope you enjoyed this website. This website reflects the enormous work of law students at Loyola University New Orleans, College of Law. The data is gathered by upper-level law students through an annual seminar on Incarceration, taught by Professor Andrea Armstrong. Each year, students file public records requests statewide on a specific topic and our inaugural class collected information on deaths in custody. The website is a project of the Technology and Legal Innovation Clinic at Loyola Law School, New Orleans, supervised by clinical Professor Judson Mitchell.
Professor Armstrong joined the Loyola University New Orleans, College of Law faculty in 2010. She is a leading national expert on prison and jail conditions and is certified by the U.S. Department of Justice as a Prison Rape Elimination Act auditor. Her research focuses on the constitutional dimensions of prisons and jails, specifically prison labor practices, the intersection of race and conditions of incarceration, and public oversight of detention facilities. She teaches in the related fields of constitutional law, criminal procedure, law and poverty, and race and the law.
Professor Judson Mitchell is the clinical professor at the Technology and Legal Innovation Clinic at Loyola Law School. Professor Mitchell supervised and directed the creation of this website. He is also responsible for the database creation, management, and internal coding of this website. Professor Mitchell is also the clinical professor of the Misdemeanor Clinic at Loyola Law School New Orleans.
Nishi Kumar is the Head of Medical Legal Projects with the Medical Justice Alliance. She is an experienced civil rights attorney and previously the Director of Civil Litigation at the Promise of Justice Initiative in New Orleans, where she advocated for individuals at the intersection of mass incarceration and healthcare. She graduated from NYU Law School and clerked for Judge Paul Watford in the Ninth Circuit and Judge Jesse Furman in the Southern District of New York.
Robert J. Harrison, LCSW is a male clinical social worker with over 12 years of experience. He is licensed to practice by the state board in Louisiana He has provided individual and grouptherapy to assess, diagnose, treat, and prevent mental illness, as well as emotional and behavioral disturbances. LCSWs have additional hours of training that qualify them to work in clinical settings. Though the role of social workers and clinical social workers differs, their goal is the same: to act as an advocate for and improve the lives of their clients.
Erica Navalance is a staff attorney, with the privilege of representing Louisiana clients at all stages of their capital appeals since 2015. In addition to direct representation, Erica was a part of the Lewis v. Cain and Ramos v. Louisiana litigation teams, co-authored a report shedding light on the terrible conditions of confinement in East Baton Rouge Parish Prison, and is a member of the Louisiana Stop Solitary Coalition. Erica earned her BA in Sociology from Brandeis University, served as an Americorps member for two years in Boston, and then got her JD from Wake Forest School of Law (2019 co-lead).
Shanita Farris started as a legal fellow in 2016 and is now a staff attorney. Her work includes challenging the conviction and death sentence of individuals sentence to death in Louisiana on direct appeal and in state post conviction. She also represents clients who were sentenced to juvenile life without parole. Shanita is the co-author of the “Dying in East Baton Rouge Parish Prison” report that exposed circumstances surrounding the death of individuals in East Baton Rouge Parish Prison, and assisted on the petition for writ of certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court in Ramos v. Louisiana. Shanita is an alumna of Spelman College and the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law (2020 co-lead).
This project is supported by the Dr. Norman C. Francis Distinguished Professorship fund and Arnold Ventures.
All parish budgets were provided by the ACLU of Louisiana.