Tara Mikkilineni (She/Her)Senior Attorney
Tara’s work focuses on fighting the criminalization of poverty and wealth-based pretrial detention, and on the accountability of prosecutors and other legal system actors. Her cases include a lawsuit against the District Attorney’s Office for Orleans Parish for its yearslong patterns of misconduct towards witnesses; a challenge to the money bail practices in Hamblen County, Tennessee, which resulted in a preliminary injunction; habeas representation of clients in Oregon, and challenges to modern-day debtors’ prisons in Oklahoma, Missouri and Tennessee.
Tara began her civil rights career as a Special Litigation attorney at the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, where she litigated cases in the D.C. and federal courts about prosecutorial misconduct, DNA databases, the constitutionality of sex offender conditions, eyewitness identification, and civil asset forfeiture. Most recently, she was a Fair Lending Enforcement attorney at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. She has also represented habeas petitioners on death row in California, and worked at a technology startup. Tara clerked for Judge Emilio Garza on the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, and is a graduate of UC Berkeley, the London School of Economics and NYU Law School, where she was an Articles Editor on the Law Review.
Tara grew up in the California Bay Area and escapes there with her family whenever she can.
“Our clients are truly the heroes of this work. They care deeply about preventing the harm that happened to them from happening to others, and their courage and perseverance inspire me every day.”