Burnette Shutt & McDaniel welcomes attorney Ashley Pennington

COLUMBIA, SC – Long-time criminal defense attorney Ashley Pennington has joined Burnette Shutt & McDaniel. His practice will focus on civil rights, including cases that move law forward on systemic reform.

During decades of practice, Pennington focused, not only on protecting clients’ rights in the judicial system, but also on helping them with the tools they needed to succeed after incarceration. This included assistance with housing and employment, as well as with mental-health counseling.

As the Ninth Circuit Public Defender (Charleston and Berkeley Counties), he helped develop the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council. That organization brings elected officials, law enforcement and community leaders together to plan and coordinate criminal justice initiatives.

He also founded a SC Re-Entry Initiative to help formerly incarcerated individuals succeed one they’re released.

“Ashley has spent decades looking for ways to help his clients avoid the revolving door that leads back to prison,” Burnette Shutt & McDaniel co-founder Nekki Shutt said. “We’re pleased that he’s joined us in the fight to move civil rights law forward and create the systemic reform that slams that door shut for good.”

At Burnette Shutt & McDaniel, Pennington plans to focus on civil rights litigation such as cases under the federal Section 1983 Civil Rights lawsuits and the South Carolina Tort Claims Act. He’ll represent clients in matters such as excessive police force, police-involved shootings, and abuse and assault at the hands of government officials.

He’ll also focus on cases involving systemic issues, such as mental-health reform in the corrections system.

Burnette Shutt & McDaniel attorneys Stuart Andrews, Nekki Shutt and Sarah Cox currently are representing detainees in just such a case. That federal lawsuit contends that detainees with serious mental illnesses are subjected to inhumane treatment at the understaffed, crowded Richland County jail.

Andrews previously has filed suits challenging mental health condition against the Charleston County Detention Center and the SC Department of Corrections.