FCLC Statement on Institute for the Quantitative Study of Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity Sentencing Analysis

posted August 10, 2021

The Federal Criminal Law Committee of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (FCLC), https://www.fclcedpa.org/, fully endorses and supports the August 6, 2021 Statement issued by the Federal Community Defender Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania (the Federal Defender), available at https://pae.fd.org/sites/pae/files/press-document/race%20study%20rebuttal.pdf, concerning the paper recently posted online by The Institute for the Quantitative Study of Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity.  The FCLC agrees with the Federal Defender that the study examining the sentencing patterns of federal judges is flawed and concerning.  As an organization that represents private criminal defense lawyers appearing before the judges of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, we echo the Federal Defender’s shock at seeing Judges C. Darnell Jones II and Timothy J. Savage on a list of judges that the study identifies as being most biased against racial minorities.  The attorneys who make up our membership, and our officers and executive committee specifically, have for many years appeared before both judges and have found them to hold and live up to the highest standards for fairness, integrity and equality under the law.  For the many valid reasons stated in the Statement issued by the Federal Defender, we question the results of this study and suggest that its findings be taken with caution.  At the same time, the FCLC welcomes the continued investigation, study and analysis of racial inequality in the prosecution and sentencing of defendants as we continue to demand and fight for the elimination of racial bias and racial disparities in our criminal justice system.