Best Practices Committees

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Best Practices Committees

  •  Best Practices Committee formed
  •  Considering whether to form a Best Practices committee or participated in a Regional Meeting



States Best Practices Committees

Statewide Best Practices Committees for prosecutors serve as a prosecution brain trust that can proactively work on how to improve the criminal justice system and how to assess emerging issues. Although they have different names depending on the state, committees generally include elected District Attorneys, senior prosecutors and prosecution coordinators. They are non-partisan and have representation from all jurisdictions in the state – rural, suburban and urban. Prosecutors from 30 states have participated in meetings discussing the national best practices movement. While some states are still considering whether to form a committee, as of June 2015, the following states have Best Practices Committees:

Arizona State SealArizona’s Best Practices Committee: The Committee includes the Arizona Attorney General, five of the fifteen elected County Attorneys (from offices across the state – small and large, rural and urban), and two Chief City Court Prosecutors. The Committee is staffed by the Executive Director of the Arizona Prosecuting Attorneys’ Advisory Council. The Committee plans training based on trending issues and best practices throughout the year for prosecutors, legal assistants, support staff, and victim advocates. In addition, the Committee supports multi-disciplinary training with its criminal justice partners.

California State SealCalifornia’s Council for Criminal Justice Integrity: The Council includes at least one representative (selected by the District Attorney) from each of the fifty-eight county District Attorneys’ offices. The Council is part of the California District Attorneys Association’s Foundation. See more about the committee on Prosecutor’s Encyclopedia. Click here.

  • “Witness for the Prosecution: The Jailhouse Informant” California Council for Criminal Justice Integrity (August 2016). Click here.
  • “Unprecedented Collaboration: Northern California Innocence Project presents at CDAA Conviction Review Forum” (July 2016). Click here.
  • “Model Body Worn Camera Policy: An Aid to Prosecutors,” California District Attorneys Association Foundation and Prosecutors Center for Excellence (June 2015). Click here.

Colorado State SealColorado’s Best Practices Committee for Prosecutors: The Committee includes elected District Attorneys and Assistant District Attorneys from across the state. It is chaired by the Executive Director of the Colorado District Attorneys’ Council and the Assistant Deputy for Criminal justice from the Colorado Attorneys General’s Office. See more about the committee on Prosecutor’s Encyclopedia. Click here.

  • “Body-Worn Cameras: A Report for Law Enforcement,” Colorado Best Practices Committee for Prosecutors (2015). Click here.
  • “Model Policy and Forms for Eyewitness Identification,” Colorado Best Practices Committee for Prosecutors (2015). Click here.
  • “Recording of Custodial Interrogations: A Report for Law Enforcement,” Colorado Best Practices Committee for Prosecutors (2015). Click here.
  • “Colorado Prosecutors Announce Launch of Best Practices Committee,” Colorado Department of Law and Colorado District Attorneys’ Council (4/10/2014). Click here.

Delaware State SealDelaware’s Best Practices Committee: The Committee includes the Chief Prosecutor from each of the state’s three counties and is chaired by the State Prosecutor.

Idaho State SealIdaho’s Justice and Professionalism Committee: The Committee includes five County Prosecutors, a Senior Deputy Prosecutor and legislative counsel and the state Prosecutor Association’s Executive Director. Three ad hoc subcommittees, composed of elected officials and senior deputies with interest in the topics of the ad hoc committees perform the bulk of the work, analysis and research.

Illinois State SealIllinois’ Best Practices Protocol Committee: The Committee, which acts as a subcommittee within the statewide prosecutor’s association, includes prosecutors from various geographical and demographic backgrounds.

  • “Illinois Prosecutors Gather for Best Practices Summit,” Office of the Kane County State’s Attorney (4/29/2015). Click here.
  • “Protecting the Rights of the Innocent and the Accused,” Office of the Kane County State’s Attorney (10/15/2014). Click here.

Indiana-State-SealIndiana’s Ethics and Best Practices Committee:  The standing committee of the Prosecuting Attorney’s Council on Ethics & Best Practices is made up of experienced prosecutors who sponsor best practice and ethics training and publish a Prosecutor Ethics Manual. The committee provides informal and formal advice to prosecutors who present issues for review. The committee has been active for more than 30 years and recently expanded their mission and title to include best practices issues.

Iowa State SealIowa’s Best Practices Committee: The Committee is an Ad Hoc committee within the statewide Iowa County Attorneys Association. The committee includes both elected and assistant county attorneys from all regions of the state, encompassing large and small jurisdictions. The Committee is chaired by the President-Elect of the Association and is open to all members of the Association.

Kansas State SealKansas County and District Attorneys Association’s Best Practices Sub-Committee: The Sub-Committee includes an elected District Attorney, eight elected County Attorneys, and seven Assistant Prosecutors from different areas of the state.

  • “Electronic Recording of Interrogations,” Contemporary Issues in Criminal Investigation and Prosecution Working Group (April 2016). Click here.

Louisiana State SealLouisiana Assistant District Attorney Board: The Board, a pre-existing committee of senior Assistant District Attorneys that functions like a Best Practices committee, includes thirty-one prosecutors selected from the state’s forty-two District Attorney offices.

Maryland State SealMaryland Best Practices Committee: The Maryland Best Practices Committee is chaired by an elected State’s Attorney; its members include five chief Deputy State’s Attorneys who are associate directors of the Board of Directors of the Maryland State’s Attorneys Association plus the Executive Director of the Association. The committee represents all regions of the state and meets on a monthly basis.

Michigan State SealMichigan Prosecutors’ Justice Initiative Best Practices Committee: The Committee includes ten elected prosecutors, three senior Assistant District Attorneys and two Assistant Attorney Generals representing different regions of the state.

Minnesota State SealMinnesota Best Practices Committee: The Committee includes seventeen prosecutors, nine representing metropolitan County Attorney offices and eight representing non-urban offices; six members are elected officials and eleven are senior prosecutors.

Missouri State SealMissouri Best Practices Committee: The Committee includes the President of the Missouri Association of Prosecuting Attorneys and six elected prosecuting attorneys who have served at least one term in office, as well as senior prosecuting attorneys. The Committee has a number of sub-committees on specific topics. The members of these committees are senior prosecutors. See more about the committee on Prosecutor’s Encyclopedia. Click here.

  • “Prosecutors Pursue Best Practices for Criminal Justice,” Missouri Association of Prosecuting Attorneys (9/5/2013). Click here.

New York State SealNew York Best Practices Committee: Committee membership is open to elected District Attorneys and senior Assistant District Attorneys from every region of the state; the state’s Attorney General’s Office is also a member. The committee is chaired by the founder and Executive Director of Prosecutors Center for Excellence. See more about the committee on Prosecutor’s Encyclopedia. Click Here.

  • “Identification Procedures: Photo Arrays and Line-ups Model Policy,” New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (March 2015). Click here.
  • “The Right Thing: Ethical Guidelines for Prosecutors,” District Attorneys Association of the State of New York (January 2016). Click here.

North Carolina State SealNorth Carolina Conference of District Attorneys’ Best Practices Committee: The Committee includes thirty-five members, each being either an elected District Attorney or other senior prosecutor representing districts large and small, rural and urban. See more about the committee on Prosecutor’s Encyclopedia. Click here.

  • Investigating and Prosecuting Use of Force Incidents in North Carolina (December 2016). Click here.
  • Body-Worn Cameras: Concerns and Considerations, North Carolina Conference of District Attorneys (April 2015). Click here.

Pennsylvania State SealPennsylvania Best Practices Committee: The Committee includes seventeen members, each being either an elected District Attorney or Assistant District Attorney from different regions of the state.

  • Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association Officer-Involved Shooting Investigation Best Practices (November 2016). Click here.
  • “PDAA Best Practices Committee Photo Identification Guidelines,” Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association (April 2016). Click here.
  • “PDAA Launches Best Practices Committee,” Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association (10/20/2014). Click here.

Tennessee State SealTennessee Justice and Professionalism Committee: The Committee includes nine members, each being either an elected District Attorney General or Assistant District Attorney General, from all regions of the state. Membership is geographically and demographically diverse. See more about the committee on Prosecutor’s Encyclopedia. Click here.

  • “District Attorneys Focus on Emerging Criminal Justice Issues,” Office of the District Attorney General (6/9/2015). Click here.

Utah State SealUtah Prosecutor Policy Advisory Committee: The Committee includes an Executive Committee, multiple sub-committees and a larger group of interested prosecutors. The Executive Committee, consisting of the Chair and six other voting members, includes the Chair of the Utah District and County Attorney’s Association (UCDAA), the Chair of the Utah Misdemeanor Prosecutor’s Association (UMPA), the Chair, or designee, of the Statewide Association of Prosecutors, two additional County Attorneys and two City Prosecutors. Non-voting members of the Executive Committee include the Director of the Utah Prosecution Council, the Chair-Elect of the UCDAA and UMPA and immediate past chairs of the UCDAA and UMPA.

Virginia State SealVirginia Best Practices Committee: The Committee is chaired by two County Commonwealth Attorneys and has twenty-two additional members from various parts of the state. See more about the committee on Prosecutor’s Encyclopedia. Click here.

  • “Commonwealth’s Attorneys Band for ‘Best Practices’ Committee,” Richmond Times-Dispatch (4/12/2015). Click here.

Washington State SealWashington Association of Prosecuting Attorneys Best Practices Committee: The Committee includes two elected County Prosecuting Attorneys as Co-Chairs (one from a large urban county, the other from a small rural county), and ten additional members, including senior deputy prosecuting attorneys, elected prosecuting attorneys and representatives from allied organizations with expertise in identified areas.

  • “Use of Body-Worn Cameras By Law Enforcement Considerations, Issues, and Concerns,” Washington Association of Prosecuting Attorneys Best Practices Committee (6/29/2015). Click here.
  • “Model Policy, Eyewitness Identification – Minimum Standards,” Washington Association of Prosecuting Attorneys Best Practices Committee (5/18/2015). Click here.

National District Attorneys Associations’ Best Practices Committee

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The committee is chaired by two elected prosecutors and the Executive Director of PCE. Its membership is open to any member of the NDAA. NDAA also provides a forum for state best practices committee members to gather and to discuss issues of mutual importance.