Join the Team
- We rely on a dedicated team of lawyers, paralegals, research and staff members to work towards justice in Louisiana.
- All paid opportunities to join us are listed on this page. If you are interested in volunteering, read about other ways to get involved in our work.
The Capital Appeals Project (CAP) is a non-profit law office based in New Orleans, Louisiana. The organization was created in 2001 to provide capital appellate representation to indigent people on Louisiana’s death row. One of the leading death penalty appeals offices in the South, CAP has provided excellence in representation to its clients before the Louisiana Supreme Court and the United States Supreme Court. CAP has acted as a resource to public defenders and criminal defense lawyers across the state. CAP’s
efforts on its clients’ behalf and in providing training and counsel to other public defenders have improved the quality and standards of representation for indigent defendants and prisoners across Louisiana.
CAP is seeking a full-time investigator/mitigation specialist to work primarily on post-conviction capital cases, but work may include appellate cases, pre-trial
capital cases, capital habeas cases, and juvenile Miller-Montgomery cases. We will consider a range of levels of experience for this position. The position will include both mitigation and fact-based investigation. Responsibilities include maintaining relationships with clients and their families, providing team administrative support, gathering records and information, investigating the facts and circumstances of alleged offenses, locating and interviewing potential witnesses, developing family and social histories, research and writing, compiling detailed social and personal histories, maintaining organized case files, and providing support for attorneys at hearings.
CAP is seeking applicants who have the skills to listen, ask questions, appreciate and understand, reach across cultures and ethnicity, describe in detail and keep track of a multiplicity of things – whether those skills come from prior investigative experience or other work or personal circumstance. The position requires frequent travel, long hours, and a deep commitment to the clients and the work we do. A solutions based problem solving attitude is a must. Recent college graduates are welcome to apply.
- Highly developed interpersonal skills
- Ability to develop rapport with people of different backgrounds
- Excellent organizational skills and attention to detail
- Some investigative experience
- Driver’s license and willingness to travel
- Respect for the humanity and dignity of our clients
- Ability to absorb and integrate large amounts of information
- Excellent written and oral expression
- Ability to work well with teams
- Dedication to anti-racism and an inclusive work place
- Willingness to work long hours
- Willingness and ability to regularly visit correctional facilities
- Training in identifying symptoms of mental and behavioral impairment
- Experience working with mental health experts
- Experience with post-conviction hearings
- Post-secondary degree or comparable work experience
- Computer literacy with spreadsheets and case management software
We will consider a range of levels of experience for this position. Salary commensurate with experience (starting range: $45,000-$75,000), and includes benefits. Healthcare coverage paid by employer. 401(k) matching contribution available after 6 months’ continuous employment.
How to Apply
Please email a resume, cover letter, three references, and a writing sample via email to: Kim Vu, Finance and Administration Manager, email@example.com. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis.
Summer Internship 2023
Capital Criminal Defense 2023 Summer Internship
The Capital Appeals Project (CAP) is a non-profit law office based in New Orleans, Louisiana that provides capital appellate, pre-trial, and post-conviction representation to indigent people on Louisiana’s death row. CAP is one of the leading death penalty appeals offices in the country and has represented clients in several recent cases before the Supreme Court of the United States, including Kennedy v. Louisiana, Snyder v. Louisiana, and Montejo v. Louisiana. CAP provides high-quality representation in the state and federal courts throughout Louisiana and acts as a resource to public defenders and criminal defense lawyers across the state. CAP attorneys have successfully represented clients in state district courts, the Louisiana Supreme Court, and the U.S. Supreme Court, which in turn has improved the quality and standards of representation for indigent capital defendants in Louisiana. We also represent a number of non-capital clients in hearings to implement the Miller/Montgomery Supreme Court decisions, which limit life without parole sentences for children, and non-capital clients in post-conviction, pardon and clemency proceedings.
CAP shares an office and works closely with The Promise of Justice Initiative (PJI), a non-profit focusing on conditions of confinement work and death penalty abolition. This unique structure allows direct representation to inform systemic challenges – and vice versa – and provides the flexibility to identify and pursue change where it is most needed.
Internship Description and Requirements
Each intern is assigned to a senior attorney for supervision and mentorship. Interns work on individual cases in appeal, pre-trial, post-conviction or federal habeas proceedings, assisting attorneys, investigators and other staff. Depending on the caseload of their supervising attorney, interns may also have the opportunity to participate in some civil conditions of confinement cases. Work includes visiting clients on death row, reviewing trial records, legal research and writing including preparing motions and briefs, and assisting with investigation, reviewing and collecting records, and conducting factual analysis in cases. The work demands rigorous attention to detail and creative thinking and offers students a closely supervised opportunity to learn the intricacies of death penalty jurisprudence, as well as criminal, appellate, and federal habeas law.
The internship begins with a training program, and we provide a program of weekly brown bag lunches where interns have the opportunity to learn from and meet some of the top public interest lawyers and workers from other organizations around the city, as well as our own staff. The nature of our work requires some evening and weekend work, and may include some travel.
As a non-profit, CAP’s summer internships are generally unpaid. CAP encourages students to pursue outside funding for the summer, and will work closely with any school or grant funding organization where interns qualify for funding. CAP is an equal opportunity employer.
Please apply with a cover letter, resume, a short writing sample, and two references to Joshua Schwartz at firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications are processed on a rolling basis.
CAP is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all employees. All employment decisions at CAP are based on business needs, job requirements and individual qualifications, without regard to race, color, religion or belief, national, social or ethnic origin, sex (including pregnancy), age, physical, mental or sensory disability, HIV Status, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, past or present military service, history of incarceration, family or parental status, or any other status protected by the laws or regulations in the locations where we operate. CAP will not tolerate discrimination or harassment based on any of these characteristics. CAP encourages applicants of all ages, and does not discriminate against formerly incarcerated individuals.
- We welcome the opportunity to work with prospective and recent law school graduates committed to justice for defendants on Louisiana’s death row.
- External funding sources include:
- Most external funding sources have application deadlines in the early fall.