Pamela R. Metzger


Seattle University School of Law
901 12th Avenue, Sullivan Hall
P.O. Box 222000
Seattle, WA 98122-1090


B.A., with honors, Dartmouth College, 1987
J.D., cum laude, New York University, 1991


Criminal Law


Pamela Metzger is the inaugural Director of the Deason Criminal Justice Reform Center. She comes to SMU Dedman School of Law from Tulane University School of Law in New Orleans, where she has taught since 2001.

Professor Metzger received her undergraduate degree from Dartmouth and her J.D. from New York University School of Law. A nationally recognized Sixth Amendment and ethics scholar, Professor Metzger's scholarship combines theory and practice in seeking improvements in criminal justice. Most recently she has explored how a data-driven systems approach to high-risk practices can improve the implementation of public defense services.

She captured a national spotlight for her round-the-clock work to help 8,000 indigent defendants left incarcerated without legal representation after Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans in 2005. She was interviewed recently on 60 Minutes, in a segment titled "Overburdened NOLA public defenders say innocents went to prison because they lacked resources and time to defend them properly."

Professor Metzger's work has appeared in publications such as the Yale Law Journal, Vanderbilt Law Review, Southern California Law Review and Northwestern University Law Review, and has been widely cited by leading authorities and by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Professor Metzger oversees the Deason Center's independent research and its development of educational opportunities focused on issues ranging from wrongful convictions to over-incarceration. Professor Metzger teaches Criminal Law.