Jocelyn Simonson

Jocelyn Simonson

Professor of Law & Associate Dean for Research and Scholarship
B.A., Yale University
J.D., Harvard University
Areas of Expertise
Criminal Law
Criminal Procedure


Professor Jocelyn Simonson is the author of Radical Acts of Justice: How Ordinary People are Dismantling Incarceration, published with the New Press in August 2023. Professor Simonson writes and teaches about criminal law, criminal procedure, evidence, and social change. Her scholarship explores ways in which the public participates in the criminal process and in the institutions of local governance that control policing and punishment. In particular, she studies bottom-up interventions in the criminal legal system, such as bail funds, copwatching, courtwatching, and participatory defense, asking how these real-life interventions should inform our conceptions of the design of legal institutions, the discourse of constitutional rights, and the meaning of democratic justice. Her most recent law review articles have appeared in the Stanford Law Review, Harvard Law Review, Yale Law Journal, Columbia Law Review, California Law Review, and Michigan Law Review. Professor Simonson’s scholarship has been cited twice by the Supreme Court, and was designated “Must Read” by the NACDL Getting Scholarship Into Courts Project.

Prior to joining the Brooklyn Law School faculty in 2015, Professor Simonson was an Acting Assistant Professor of Lawyering at New York University School of Law. Previously, Professor Simonson spent five years as a public defender with the Bronx Defenders. She clerked for the Hon. Barrington D. Parker, Jr., U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit.