Criminal Justice

Annual Program

Establishing Innocence or Guilt


Plano, Texas, USA

Past Event

MCLE Credit will be available

The Center for American and International Law
5201 Democracy Drive
Plano, TX  75024

Online registration is closed. You can still register by bringing a completed registration form to the registration desk.

Registrar: +1.972.244.3404
Fax: +1.972.244.3401


This annual program focuses on why wrongful convictions occur and how they can be prevented. The 2015 session will address such issues as: hair analysis, arson, bite marks, eye-witness identifications, snitch testimony, and ethics.


This program is funded by a grant from the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. Thanks to this grant, the seminar is offered tuition-free to most participants.

Download the Brochure (pdf)

For more details, download the online brochure.

Agenda as of 8/17/15

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

8:00 am

Registration Begins

9:00 am


  • Inger Chandler, Assistant District Attorney, Harris Co. District Attorney’s Office

10:15 am


10:30 am

Beyond Willingham: Recognizing Errors & Crafting Solutions In Fire Investigations

  • Paul Bieber, Director, The Arson Research Project
  • Chris Connealy, State Fire Marshall, Texas Department of Insurance

12:00 pm

Lunch (Provided)

12:30 pm

Lunch Speaker

  • Christopher Scott, Exoneree

1:15 pm


1:30 pm

Eyewitness Testimony: Untangling Truth, Lies, and False Memories

  • Craig E.L. Stark, Professor, University of California, Irvine (via Skype)

2:30 pm


2:45 pm

Technology and Actual Innocence – Cell Phones

  • Miles Brissette, Gill & Brissette

3:15 pm


3:30 pm

Presenting Scientific Information to the Jury & Cognitive Bias in Forensic Labs

  • Melissa Valadez, MSFS, D-ABC, Austin Lab Manager, Texas Department of Public Safety, Crime Laboratory Service

5:00 pm


Thursday, August 20, 2015

9:00 am


  • Inger Chandler, Assistant District Attorney, Harris Co. District Attorney’s Office
  • Patricia Cummings, Special Fields Bureau Chief, Dallas Co. District Attorney’s Office
  • Gary Udashen, Attorney at Law, Sorrels, Udashen & Anton

10:00 am


10:15 am

Texas Case Law and Legislative Update

  • Gary Udashen, Attorney at Law, Sorrels, Udashen & Anton

11:15 am


11:30 am

An Update on Plans for the Integrity Unit in Dallas

  • Patricia Cummings, Assistant District Attorney, Dallas Co. District Attorney’s Office

12:00 pm

Lunch (Provided)

12:30 pm

Panel Discussion: Hair Analysis

  • Vanessa Antoun, Resource Counsel, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL)
  • Lynn Robitaille Garcia, General Counsel, Texas Forensic Science Commission
  • Jack Roady, Criminal District Attorney, Texas Prosecutor, Galveston Co. District Attorney’s Office
  • Melissa Valadez, MSFS, D-ABC, Austin Lab Manager, Texas Department of Public Safety, Crime Laboratory Service
  • Robert S. Wicoff, Appellate Division Chief, Harris Co. Public Defender’s Office

2:15 pm


2:30 pm

Legal Updates

  • Chief Timothy Longo, Charlottesville Police Department

3:45 pm


4:00 pm

False Confessions and Jail-House Snitches

  • Michael Ware, Attorney at Law, Law Office of Michael Ware

5:00 pm


CLE Credit

MCLE Credit

The State Bar of Texas has approved this program for a total of 13 hours, including 1 hour of ethics. Course ID Number: 901324840.

In addition to Texas, after the program (if requested) CAIL will directly apply for course accreditation in the following states, as long as course materials and evaluations are not required: California, New Mexico, and Oklahoma. Attorneys may be eligible to receive CLE credit through attorney self-submission in other states, as long as course materials and evaluations are not required to be submitted.

Overnight Accommodations

Hyatt Place Plano welcomes our guests attending Establishing Innocence or Guilt at The Center for American and International Law. We have set aside a block of rooms with a group rate of $92 plus applicable fees/taxes for 8/17/2015-8/22/2015.

Please make your reservations by 8/4/2015. As long as the reservation is made by this date, and the group block has availability, you will receive the group rate. Any reservations not received on or before this cut-off date are subject to hotel availability at the best available prevailing rate.

Booking Instructions

Book online at
Type in Arrival/Departure Dates
Enter Group/Corporate #: G-CL43
Call 888-HYATT-HP (888.492.8847) or 972.378.3997

Dates available: 8/17/2015-8/22/2015
Mention the group name: CAILAW Establishing Innocence or Guilt

  • A valid credit card is required to make reservations
  • Tax Exemption Certificates and Credit Card Authorization Forms may be faxed to the hotel directly at 972.608.4427 prior to your arrival.

Other Information

Cancellation Policy

Written cancellation must be received 5 business days prior to a program to receive a refund (Email: After this date, no refunds, but substitution of attendees for this program will be permitted with prior approval. Registrants not entitled to a refund will receive the course materials.

Nondiscriminatory Policy

The Center for American and International Law does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, disability, veteran status or any other protected status in educational activities, scholarship programs or admissions.

Privacy Policy

We do not sell or rent information to any outside parties. By providing your information, you will receive postal and electronic communications from The Center for American and International Law (CAIL) in accordance with CAIL's Privacy Policy. If we co-sponsor a program with another organization, information may be shared between the parties. All such co-sponsors will be identified on the event details and registration page. At any point, you can opt-out or unsubscribe by selecting either link at the bottom of each email or call us at 972.244.3400.