Afton joined the Youth Advocacy Division as Director of Juvenile Appeals in June 2018. From 2007-2018, she was a sole practitioner focused on juvenile delinquency/youthful offender, criminal defense, family law and child welfare appeals. Previously she served as Deputy General Counsel to the Massachusetts Parole Board and as an Assistant District Attorney in the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office. Afton has briefed and argued numerous criminal and civil appeals, including homicides, sexual assaults and grand jury matters, before the Supreme Judicial Court and Appeals Court.
Afton has filed numerous amicus briefs with the Supreme Judicial Court, including Diatchenko v. District Attorney for the Suffolk District, which created the right to counsel for juvenile lifers before the Parole Board. While at the Parole Board and Middlesex District Attorney’s Office, Afton presented trainings on search and seizure, grand jury practice, community parole supervision for life and executive clemency. She previously served as Law Clerk to the Justices of the Superior Court and to the Hon. Francis X. Spina (ret.), then of the Appeals Court.
Afton has been a faculty member at numerous MCLE seminars and has taught legal skills sections in Appellate Advocacy and Criminal Law at the University of Massachusetts School of Law at Dartmouth. She is a member of the Juvenile Indigent Defense Action Network, and the Women’s Bar Association, where she served as co-chair of the Amicus Committee. Afton received her B.A. from Mount Holyoke College and her J.D. at Northeastern University School of Law.