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  • Description

    This course was prepared in conjunction with the National Association for Public Defense. By viewing this CLE by I am affirming that today I am neither a prosecutor nor viewing this course with the purpose of aiding the prosecution of any criminally accused. I further affirm that I am dedicated to the ideals of the criminal defense practitioner, and am committed to the causes of effective and zealous defense of those charged with crimes, the protection and assertion of constitutional rights afforded the criminally accused, and the recognition and preservation of human dignity of those charged with crimes. I further affirm that the information provided by this course will not be used by me in any manner which would impugn the above set of ideals.

    A typical jury cannot possibly understand the experience of soldiers, particularly combat soldiers. Veterans are shaped by the events they witnessed and those events typically cause or somewhat impact the implications related to criminal offenses.

    This CLE course will explain how to obtain military records in order to understand the offender and their particular history and how it might impact a case. The course will delve into understanding military records and their particular context within the culture of the military and how to frame veteran mitigation in a way that recognizes and accounts for their experiences.

  • Instructor Bio

    Art Cody

    Captain Art Cody, USN (Retired) is the Director of Criminal Programs at the Veteran Advocacy Project. His military career spans over thirty years and he has served worldwide. Art began his career as an Army helicopter pilot followed by a similar role in the US Navy Reserve flying for a Strike Rescue/Special Operations Squadron. He served aboard USS Enterprise (CVN-65) in the initial response to the 9-11 attacks and was most recently deployed to Afghanistan (2011-2012) as the Staff Director of the Rule of Law Section, US Embassy Kabul.

    As a civilian lawyer, he has represented criminal clients for over twenty years and is the former chair of the Capital Punishment Committee of the New York City Bar Association. He frequently presents nationally on the defense of veterans, provides counsel to lawyers for capitally charged or sentenced veterans, and served as lead counsel in a veteran capital clemency hearing. Most recently (January, 2020), he assisted the Southern Center for Human Rights in obtaining clemency for Jimmy Meders, an Army veteran.

    In addition to an Aerospace Engineering degree from West Point, he graduated magna cum laude from Notre Dame Law School where he was the Executive Editor of the Notre Dame Law Review and founded the Notre Dame Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty. He is a recipient of the New York City Bar Association's Thurgood Marshall Award for Capital Representation, the Four Chaplains Legion of Honor Humanitarian Award for Lifetime Service, and the New York State Bar Association’s 2019 David S. Michaels Award for his representation of veterans in Criminal Courts.

    His military decorations include the Navy Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Naval Aviator Badge, Army Aviator Badge, Army Parachutist Badge and the German Armed Forces Parachutist Badge. Additionally, he received the State Department’s Meritorious Honor Award for his service in Kabul.