Professor Ron Wright helps writers of CBS’s ‘Elementary’ with legal question

Photo of Wake Forest Law Professor Ron Wright

Professor Ron Wright is one of the nation’s best known criminal justice scholars. He is the co-author of two casebooks in criminal procedure and sentencing; his empirical research concentrates on the work of criminal prosecutors.

A hit television show needed help. The writers found themselves facing a complicated legal process they needed help clarifying. That’s when they turned to Professor Ron Wright.

On Tuesday, April 4, 2017, Professor Wright received an email from the writers of CBS’s “Elementary,” a modern take on Sherlock Holmes starring Lucy Liu and Jonny Lee Miller.

The information Professor Wright provided for an episode that involves a criminal getting immunity for agreeing to testify against members of his own gang was strictly background for the writers so that “we can try and make things as accurate as possible in our episode,” the email states.

In order to not give away any spoilers, details about the episode will remain undisclosed. Professor Wright, however, did tell the writers that while they were dealing with complex legal issues surrounding “use immunity,” he assured them that he thought they were on the right track.

Professor Wright is one of the nation’s best known criminal justice scholars. He is the co-author of two casebooks in criminal procedure and sentencing; his empirical research concentrates on the work of criminal prosecutors. He is a board member of the Prosecution and Racial Justice Project of the Vera Institute of Justice, and has been an advisor or board member for Families Against Mandatory Minimum Sentences (FAMM), North Carolina Prisoner Legal Services, Inc., and the Winston-Salem Citizens’ Police Review Board. Prior to joining the faculty, he was a trial attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice, prosecuting antitrust and other white-collar criminal cases.