The Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments: A View from the Bench
with Judges James Cott and Paul Engelmayer
Offered in partnership with the New York Public Library
Tuesday, November 6, 2018
Nominations are now open. Nominate here.

This master class, led by two federal judges, will examine how the Supreme Court has given life to two key protections of the Constitution: the right under the Fourth Amendment to be free from “unreasonable searches and seizures,” and the guarantee under the Fourteenth Amendment of “equal protection of the laws.” Illustrating the process of constitutional adjudication, we will examine how, in a series of landmark criminal and civil rights cases, the Supreme Court over time has developed these foundational concepts and applied them to a changing society. We will read and review historic and recent cases involving these provisions. Judges Cott and Engelmayer will also discuss the work of a federal judge and how, in practice, cases raising Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment issues tend to arise and be resolved.

James L. Cott became a United States magistrate judge for the Southern District of New York in 2010. Immediately prior to his appointment to the bench, Judge Cott served as the chief of the civil division in the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York from 2003 to 2010. A graduate of Harvard College and Northeastern University School of Law, Judge Cott has also served as a law clerk to the late Vincent L. Broderick, United States district judge for the Southern District of New York, and for 13 years was an assistant United States attorney in the civil division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, serving as chief of the Office’s civil rights unit from 1991 to 1996 and as a deputy chief of the civil division from 1996 to 2000. From 2001 to 2003, Judge Cott was the associate director of litigation at the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund. Judge Cott has taught at New York University School of Law and at Fordham Law School, and participates annually in the Practising Law Institute’s course on Current Developments in Federal Civil Practice.

Paul A. Engelmayer has been a United States district judge for the Southern District of New York since 2011. He was appointed by President Obama. A graduate of Harvard College (1983) and Harvard Law School (1987), Judge Engelmayer served as law clerk (1987-1988) to Patricia M. Wald, chief judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, and to Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall (1988-1989). For the next decade, Judge Engelmayer served in the U.S. Department of Justice, including in the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York (1989-1994 and 1996-1999), where he prosecuted white-collar-crime cases and served as deputy chief appellate attorney and as chief of the major crimes unit, and in the United States Solicitor General’s Office (1994-1996), where he briefed and argued cases before the Supreme Court. Between 2000 and 2011, he was a lawyer in private practice in Manhattan. Judge Engelmayer frequently teaches at law schools, including annually teaching Trial Advocacy at Harvard Law School, and speaks on panels; he is also a trustee of the Harvard Law Review. Prior to law school, Judge Engelmayer worked as a staff reporter for The Wall Street Journal (1983-1984).