Subodh Chandra talks with demVoices about his work serving justice and the public interest in the City of Cleveland

Human Rights lawyer and former Cleveland Law Director and Federal Prosecutor, Subodh Chandra, has made it his life’s work to protect and serve the public interest of the city of Cleveland. In our exclusive interview with Chandra, featured below, he tells us the story behind the wrongful conviction of a man named Michael Green, who served thirteen years in prisonĀ for a rape he did not commit.

While acknowledging the errors and shortcomings of certain individuals involved in the system at the time of Green’s wrongful conviction, Chandra reveals his unwavering commitment to facing these challenges through the system as it is. He exhibits a great deal of faith in the ability of honest actors and thorough proceedings to lead to true justice in the end for the people of Cleveland, and in this case, Michael Green. Listen as Chandra describes how creativity and cooperation in this case acted as a vehicle for reform in the city’s justice system, and what we can take away from that example.

“I think that public service, when approached appropriately, using the right value framework, can actually be in the public interest…[It] does not have to be in some narrow private interest, and does not have to be hostile to justice…It’s that kind of creativity that we need public officials to apply in the public sector,” Chandra attests.

In recent weeks and months, Chandra has voiced his concerns about the Justice Department’s findings regarding patterns of excessive force used by Cleveland’s Police Department. In the wake of such disturbing revelations, Chandra’s been able to speak out about the changes that he believes need to be made in order to shift the culture of the Cleveland Police Department toward social progress and the ideals of justice. You can see that interview here.