David Loftis Returns to LAS as Attorney-in-Charge of Post Conviction and Forensic Litigation
FRIDAY, APRIL 29, 2016

Tina Luongo, the Attorney-in-Charge of the Criminal Practice of The Legal Aid Society, announced the appointment of David Loftis as the new Attorney in Charge of Post Conviction and Forensic Litigation.

As the AIC of Post Conviction and Forensic Litigation, David will lead the Criminal Appeals Bureau, the Parole Revocations Defense Unit, the DNA Unit and the Digital Forensics Unit. He brings 25 years of criminal justice advocacy to the position. He has litigated in state and federal courts, at the trial level, on direct appeal and in collateral proceedings, and brings a wealth of management experience and criminal justice reform work to the position.

David began his career, in 1990, at our Criminal Appeals Bureau. He spent six years in Appeals, where he wrote dozens of briefs on behalf of indigent clients and argued before the First and Second Departments, and the Court of Appeals. In 1996, he took a position as a staff attorney at the Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem where he represented clients in all phases of representation. In 1998, he continued his career as a trial-level public defender at the Bronx Defenders. He subsequently became a Supervising Attorney in that organization and then the Legal Advisor. As such, he supervised lawyers, investigators, and social workers in their case work. Additionally, he prepared legal updates, conducted trainings, and advised lawyers on complex litigation issues. In 2005, David joined the Federal Defenders where he represented clients in the Eastern District of New York before moving on a year later to become the Managing Attorney at the Innocence Project.

At the Innocence Project, he directed the overarching strategy of the Legal Department, supervised its staff, and oversaw its clinical program. The unit advanced multifaceted, post-conviction claims seeking to prove innocence through DNA testing. In addition to helping free the innocent, he forwarded the Project’s reform work, studying the causes of wrongful conviction (such as mistaken eye-witness identification, faulty forensic evidence, false confessions, prosecutorial misconduct, etc.) and filing dozens of amicus briefs, several before the United States Supreme Court. He also worked with criminal justice leaders across the country and within the city to advance criminal justice reform.

David will assume his new role on May 2nd.