April 08, 2022

On the afternoon of April 8, Catholic Law students were joined virtually by The Honorable Charles Ehrlich for "Modern Prosecution: A View From the Bench - Being an Effective and Just Prosecutor in the 21st Century," a program hosted by the Law School's DC Modern Prosecution Program and co-sponsored by the Criminal Law Society. Judge Ehrlich has worked in the Philadephia County Court of Common Pleas for the last ten years. Prior to that, he spent 25 years as an Assistant District Attorney. During that time he was instrumental in changing the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office — campaigning for alternative judicial programs.

To begin the program, Mary Graw Leary, Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, introduced Judge Ehrlich and then turned the program over to him. Judge Ehrlich provided wonderful insight into how one can be an effective and ethical lawyer in what Dean Graw Leary called “the new world of prosecution.” First, Judge Ehrlich briefly discussed the use of constructive sentences as a different tool for rehabilitating non-violent offenders. He then outlined the necessary qualities of a good persecutor — including having good judgment, working hard, acting ethically, and treating people fairly. He also answered questions from students who are interested in pursuing future careers as prosecutors. To end, he referenced the words of Micah (words that are also engraved on the Law School building), “Walk humbly, do justice, and love mercy. Be a prosecutor that has those qualities.”