Military lawyer David Coombs, lead defense counsel for Chelsea Manning f/k/a PFC Bradley Manning, will teach criminal procedure, coach trial team.

Upcoming Events

Secrets & Scandals

Secrets & Scandals

Info Session for Prospective Students
NOV
10
8:30 am - 12:00 pm
10 Metacom Avenue, Bristol RI. 02809
Hands-on Deposition Skills Training Program
NOV
13
All Day
Providence and Bristol, Rhode Island
Secrets and Scandals: Reforming Rhode Island, 1986-2006
NOV
13
4:30 pm - 7:00 pm
RWU School of Law, Bristol, RI
Marine Affairs Student Roundtable Luncheon
NOV
19
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Bay View Room
Criminal Justice Reform with Soffiyah Elijah
NOV
19
12:30 pm - 2:00 pm
Appellate Courtroom 283

Trending@RWULaw

10/17/2014
By Julia Wyman
It has been a busy fall at the Marine Affairs Institute!  In late September, we held our annual “Meet the Bay” trip with our 1Ls.  Save the Bay, a Rhode Island non-profit dedicated to the...


Affordable Excellence at RWU LAW

Archives

Newsroom

‘WikiLeaks Lawyer’ Coombs Joins Faculty

Military lawyer David Coombs, lead defense counsel for Chelsea Manning f/k/a PFC Bradley Manning, will teach criminal procedure, coach trial team.

Visiting Professor David Coombs with Professor Emily Sack at RWU Law in Sept. 2013

BRISTOL, R.I., August 21, 2014 – As its Fall 2014 semester begins, Roger Williams University School of Law has welcomed renowned WikiLeaks defense lawyer David Coombs to its faculty as Visiting Associate Professor of Law.

Coombs, who has previously taught at RWU Law as an adjunct faculty member, will be coaching the school’s trial team  and teaching “Criminal Procedure: Investigation,” a required second-year course, during the Spring 2015 semester.

In recent years, Coombs – whose Providence-based law practice focuses on defense work in military courts-martial proceedings – won national media attention as the lead defense counsel for Chelsea Manning f/k/a PFC Bradley Manning, the soldier convicted last summer in the largest leak of documents in United States history.

 “What an amazing opportunity for our students,” said RWU Law Dean Michael Yelnosky, of Coombs’ decision to join the faculty. “David was defense counsel in one of the most complex and important trials of this century.  Moreover, he is an experienced and effective teacher.  It makes me want to take Criminal Procedure again.”

Coombs is also looking forward to this latest posting. “I’m excited to be joining the faculty at RWU Law as a visiting professor,” he said. “Having taught at the law school as an adjunct, I appreciate how extraordinarily well RWU Law does in providing both scholarly excellence and real-world practical skills to its students.  I look forward to contributing to the school and having the opportunity to work with so many great students and colleagues.”

During the Manning trial, Coombs won praise for his excellent trial work and, in particular, for avoiding a conviction on the most serious charge that Manning was facing, that of aiding the enemy. The New York Times wrote that Coombs mounted an “aggressive defense” and that he “attacked the government’s case on every conceivable ground, even as he conceded that Private Manning was the Wikileaks source.”

On August 21, 2013, Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison for providing over 700,000 classified documents to WikiLeaks. Coombs made a widely covered appearance at the law school last fall, offering his first detailed public statements on the trial and verdict to a standing-room-only crowd of students, alumni, faculty and media.

Coombs is still representing Manning, and is presently concentrating on “the one year anniversary of Chelsea’s request for HRT (hormone replacement therapy) treatment, and our plans to enforce her constitutional right to adequate medical treatment should the Army refuse to provide the requested medical care,” he said.