Public Defense News

2019 Public Defense News Archive

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December

12/19/19

Holiday Inspiration:

Spreading holiday cheer, one letter at a time

Report:

Vera Institute for Justice: People in Jail in 2019

National:

Broken Justice – Epilogue: Life after life in prison

Opinion: Rural justice systems low on pretrial resources leave some to languish, die

Column: The progressive prosecutor movement is great – but without funding public defenders it won’t work

I did my 25 years. Now I’m fighting another sentence – deportation

Colorado:

Office of the municipal public defender overburdened with massive caseloads

Washington:

Counties aim for one big win in upcoming legislative session

Missouri:

Public-defender immunity case before (Missouri) Supreme Court

Pennsylvania:

Dozens rally for Philly police accountability, including DA Larry Krasner, Chief Defender Keir Bradford-Grey, Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins

Vermont:

SCOV law blog: The right to a defender for pro se petitions for post-conviction relief

Texas:

‘A broken system in action’: A judge’s handling of bond in a student’s case sparks criticism

2019’s big stories shaping Austin’s path into a new decade

Virginia:

Northam’s budget includes $2.7 million for Prince William public defenders’ office

District of Columbia:

Opinion: the government wants to move the DC public defender’s office. That could be disastrous.

New Jersey: 

Assembly bill eliminates driver’s license suspension for certain crimes

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy restores voting rights for 80,000 on probation or parole

Hardyston council interviews for prosecutor, public defender

Ohio:

Commissioners agree to higher attorney fees for indigent cases (Richland)

Oregon:

More money, reimbursement for public defender group

Editorial: Monitor changes to public defender contracts

New York:

Scott Hechinger: A day in the life of a Brooklyn public defender

Public defender denounces criticism of reform

Indiana:

Former Porter County man tells judge he can’t find an attorney to take his case

Kentucky:

Kentucky Governor restores voting rights for nonviolent felons

Arizona:

Ex-Maricopa County public defender blows whistle on alleged ‘stakeholder’ policy in complaint against county

Florida:

After two Broward jail deaths, one deemed ‘suspect,’ public defenders call out sheriff

Who’s going to watch all that policy body camera footage?  In Marion County, prosecutors and public defenders joined forces to find a solution

Georgia:

Catoosa County renews operating contract for public defender’s office

Massachusetts:

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker signs $542 million closeout budget bill

California:

Former public defender Rachel Rossi wants to become LA District Attorney

SF DA-elect Chesa Boudin sets new course in gang cases citing charges ‘infused with racism’

SFPD drags feet in enacting policy protecting youth from false confessions, critics charge

Gas leak forces public defense attorneys from downtown offices

Louisiana:

East Baton Rouge judges want these tweaks made to new 72-hour arraignment process

Utah:

Salt Lake County hires new criminal justice advisory board council director

New Hampshire:

Sununu appoints former public defender to head parole board

Jennifer Sargent named new chairperson of NH parole board

Nevada:

Frierson to return to Clark County public defender’s office after years as a chief deputy district attorney

Of Interest:

The hidden cost of incarceration

For sheriffs, healthcare for inmates can be a burden.  For one doctor, it has been the opportunity of a lifetime.

Can we fix mass incarceration without including violent offenders?

12/12/19

National:

Broken Justice Podcast – Episode 5: Where do we go from here?

Maine:

Reforms eyed for Maine’s state-appointed criminal defense lawyer system

Lawmakers order investigation into Maine’s state-appointed criminal defense lawyer system

Wyoming:

Public defender praises governor’s proposed budget

State public defender likes budget plan

Missouri:

St. Louis county judge authorizes 2020 wait list for low-income defendants

After 23 years wrongly imprisoned, Ricky Kidd is free – and using his voice

Politically speaking: On Missouri’s 2nd Congressional district race, public defender woes

Oklahoma:

Opinion: Oklahoma shouldn’t punish poor people for their poverty: American Bar Association president

‘No lawyer present’: Federal lawsuit challenges Canadian County bail system

Michigan:

The penalty for being poor (Berrien County)

The Supreme Court ruled that sentences like hers are unconstitutional. Prosecutors are fighting to keep her incarcerated.

Georgia:

Who qualifies for a public defender in Georgia?

New York:

Public defender defends new laws (Steuben County)

County braces for bail reform (Allegany County)

New York City paid McKinsey millions to stem jail violence. Instead, violence soared.

Arizona:

Public defender says his department trouble with personnel turnover (La Paz County)

California:

SF public defender asks for release of man serving sentence for eating cookie

Judge overturns six-month jail sentence for man who ate a leftover cookie

Orange County sheriff’s dept. mishandled evidence; kept it quiet for nearly 2 years

Evidence scandal in Orange County stirs conflict within law enforcement

Arrests and jail days decreased 90% for Yolo County mental health court participants

SJ’s public defender’s office sued over alleged harassment, anti-LGBT comments

Opinion: Dear Sally Stephens: Chesa Boudin will stand up for crime victims

Fresno County rolls out tech solution for missed court dates

County hopes text message will help defendants show up (Fresno County)

Virginia:

City public defenders launch pay parity campaign (Richmond)

Body cameras create additional workload, cost for localities

Indiana:

Outside public defenders appointed for suspects in Clark County Jail drug smuggling ring

Louisiana:

His appeal in Louisiana was a sham proceeding. But the high court won’t review the case.

Louisiana’s life without parole sentencing the nation’s highest – and some say that should change

Courts: New Orleans must release crime camera locations

Of Interest:

When a DNA test says you’re a younger man, who lives 5,000 miles away

12/5/19

National:

Imagine being on trial with exonerating evidence trapped on your phone.

Still scarce, digital forensics crawls into public defenders’ office

Missouri:

A Missouri judge has literally been ordering overworked public defenders to violate ethics rules

Letter: Serve Justice (by ABA President Judy Perry Martinez)

Missouri lawmakers: public defender system failing, but search for funds a challenge

Missouri shortchanges public defenders, damaging state’s justice system

As Kansas City killings soar, KCPD makes major changes to homicide unit

In Missouri, public defenders push to put poor defendants on wait list in attempt to improve their legal representation

Public defenders overwhelmed by nonsupport cases

Wyoming:

Wyoming Supreme Court hears public defender case arguments

Massachusetts:

SJC faces tricky constitutional challenge in indigent defense case

Louisiana:

Lafayette public defender: Local justice system reaching a breaking point

In a Louisiana parish, hundreds of cases may be tainted by sheriff’s office misconduct (Iberia Parish)

A Louisiana DA will let you out of your community service obligation – if you donate to his nonprofit

Maine:

In defense of the defendants

Panel considers ways to improve indigent legal services

Commentary: It’s time to follow LePage’s plan on indigent defense

The real scandal of Maine’s legal defense system for the poor isn’t overbilling

Oklahoma:

Day 5 – Tulsa County seen as model for solutions as criticisms of Oklahoma bail system compound

Day 5 – Legislature looking at ways to alleviate burden of court fines and fees

Day 4: Unpaid court fees disproportionately impacts north Tulsa leaving residents ‘entrapped’ in debt, analysis shows

Day 4: He was homeless and struggled with alcohol.  Then Ali Sharifi piled up over 300 arrests before dying owing thousands in court debt

Day 3: Feed the kids or pay court fines and fees? One Tulsa woman hopes for a day she doesn’t face that decision

Day 3: Reform advocates want Oklahoma to halt driver’s licenses suspension as an incentive to pay tickets, court debt

Day 2: Outstanding court debt blocks many Oklahomans from getting convictions expunged

Day 1: How one woman’s story depicts Oklahoma’s struggle with fines, fees and costs in the justice system

Day 1: Young mother, now out of jail and sober, is trying to rebuild her life but still has jail fees to worry about

Michigan:

Finely: Detroit leaves $1.1M for poor defense on the table

Utah:

With cases increasing year after year, Utah County’s public defenders are ‘at full capacity,’ association director says

They loan you money.  Then they get a warrant for your arrest.

Wisconsin:

Bill proposed $20,000 in student-loan repayments for rural public defenders

Texas:

Courts struggle to collect debt in Texas, study says. That’s costly and puts poor violators in jail.

New Travis County public defender’s office aims for better legal outcomes

Opinion: Why rural Americans struggle for equal justice

Panhandle Justice Project seeks to increase access to attorneys

Why I started a book club in the Harris County jail

California:

How rapid response lawyers can change people’s lives

Dozens of OCSD deputies mishandled, lied about booking evidence, audits find

Orange County public defenders making rumbles over sheriff’s lapses in handling evidence

Orange County sheriff, top public defender clash over severity of evidence mishandling

CA defender cites ‘disastrous’ mishandling of cases (Orange County)

California is about to allow former felons to serve on juries.  Here’s why

Share the spirit: Marine combat veteran credits Swords to Plowshares in quest to become defense attorney

Pennsylvania:

Philly’s public defenders move to unionize with UAW

Philadelphia’s public defenders decide to unionize

Larry Krasner v. Everybody: Inside the Philly DA’s crusade to revolutionize criminal justice

Georgia:

Facing numerous caseloads, Chatham County DA and Public Defender’s office getting extra assistance

Chatham County commission approves funding for public defender’s, DA’s office

Alaska:

Dunleavy accelerates state public defender’s departure, but the official doesn’t believe the move is legal

West Virginia:

Kanawha public defender held in contempt appeals case to Supreme Court

Virginia:

Public defender’s office needed in Prince William: Senator

Surovell, Foy pitch public defenders’ office for Prince William

Some Portsmouth inmates will appear in court by video. Lawyers say that threatens their rights.

Florida:

Miami-Dade stopped prosecuting minor pot charges, but cops keep making arrests anyway

Closer look: Former homicide investigator for public defender’s office details work behind the scenes for cases like Brianna Williams

North Carolina:

How a new bail fund in Orange County may keep low-level alleged offenders out of jail

Giving thanks: Panthers bail out indigent incarcerated for holiday

Guilford County public defender Fred Lind’s retirement marks ‘end of an era’

New York:

Dutchess public defender’s office might tighten financial control: Comptroller audit

Opinion: Bail reform flawed, needs to be revisited (Utica)

Another voice: Cash bail does not make our communities any safer

Oregon:

Indigent defendants to get improved legal help under Oregon changes

Why Oregon is changing how it pays for public defense

Decriminalizing mental illness (Deschutes County)

Cash bail comes with a cost. Would Portland be better off without it?

New Jersey:

Lawsuit: Mercer County’s inmate transfer plan with Hudson is unconstitutional

Washington:

County leaders propose new security measures outside courthouse after attack

What’s been happening with safe injection sites?

Indiana:

Justices accept Richmond public defender’s resignation

Second change workshop helps individuals get back on the road

Of Interest:

Report: Racial divide shrinks in US criminal justice system

The growing racial disparity in prison time

Fingerprint analysis is high-stakes work – but it doesn’t take much to qualify as an expert

The myth of technology as equalizer

 

November

11/21/19

National:

Broken Justice: Episode 3 – When things go wrong

Since you asked: Is it me, or is the government releasing less data about the criminal justice system?

Missouri:

Public defenders ordered to violate ethics to keep defendants moving through court

Defenseless: Missouri justice system violates the Constitution every day

Before their day in court, poor people charged with crimes can spend years in jail

Missouri prosecutors hold all the cards.  Public defenders and vulnerable clients fold

Before their day in court, poor people charged with crimes can spend years in jail

Editorial – ‘Constant injustice’: Missouri must fund and fix its broken public defender system

Greg Memelstein named interim director of public defender system

Oregon:

Overhaul of Oregon’s public defense system gaining speed

Wyoming:

Wyoming Supreme Court hears public defender arguments

Relationship between Rawlins attorney and registered sex offender at root of disciplinary action

Maine:

Maine eyes switch to indigent legal services after ACLU calls system unconstitutional

Massachusetts:

Massachusetts’ highest court is urged to address a crisis in indigent defense

Nebraska:

‘We just need to make some moves’: Sarpy Co. public defender’s office will not accept new misdemeanor cases

Utah:

Ousted public defender claims he was punished for raising ethics questions in Weber County

Wisconsin:

Opinion: Waiting for attorney ‘a significant problem’

Louisiana:

‘Public defenders are paid to lose’: Louisiana looking at reforms to legal defense system

A city (New Orleans) could wipe away 55,000 old warrants

New Orleans Saints linebacker defends public attorneys

Michigan:

Criminal defense office opens in Wayne County

Calhoun County creates public defender office so everyone can have experienced, capable defense

Pennsylvania:

Opinion: Your View by attorney for mom who left baby on bus: ‘Money buys freedom. Poverty buys a jail cell.’

Philadelphia council passes right to counsel, giving free legal representation to tenants who are evicted

New York:

Editorial: A sad last gasp against criminal justice reform

As legal aid attys see pay gains, nonlawyer peers struggle

Mississippi:

Civil rights groups sue Mississippi prosecutor for illegally striking black jurors

New Jersey:

Cops are making fewer arrests since NJ got rid of cash bail

Arizona:

‘Egregious’ act by deputy made public defender cry

Iowa:

Iowa public defender quits side police job after criticism

Maryland:

Baltimore state’s attorney Mosby: Flawed criminal justice system is black Americans’ biggest civil rights issue

Texas:

Public defender’s office aims to address Bexar County’s domestic violence crisis with treatment over incarceration

KCBD investigates: Grievance filed against public defender alleging disturbing behavior (Brownfield)

Editorial: A surprising candidate to oversee Bexar county bail hearings

California:

Judge orders waist chains removed from Orange County courthouses

Yolo County public defender’s office holding clothing drive

Of Interest:

Watchdog cites shortcomings in FBI’s confidential source program

11/14/19

Report:

The Right to Counsel in Armstrong County & Potter County, Texas: Evaluation of Adult Trial Level Indigent Defense Representation

National:

Broken Justice: Episode 2 – How did we get there?

Maine:

The high cost of poor defense

Texas:

Potter County criminal defense system in lambasted in a new report

Grant money to help indigent defense

Massachusetts:

A crisis for indigent defense in Massachusetts

Mass. SJC hears arguments in case asking if lack of criminal defense lawyers in unconstitutional

Missouri:

Missouri public defender highlights overworked system during seminar built on ideals of late Scottsbluff attorney

Column: Overburdened public defenders in St. Louis County seek relief.  This time they may get it.

Nebraska:

Sarpy public defender won’t accept misdemeanor appointments, citing case workload

Michigan:

Column: Wayne County acts to assure equal justice for poor

Public defenders having a big impact, chief attorney says

Illinois:

Chicago’s public defender plans to ask Illinois Supreme Court to reverse decision that permits holding preteens in custody despite county ordinance

Cook County public defender fighting detention of preteens

Illinois court permits detaining preteenagers

Private defense yields better results in Knox County DUI cases

Questions raised about public defender’s office (Fulton County)

Ohio:

Indigent attorney compensation increases in area

Commissioners hear pitch for full-time public defenders office (Allen County)

Talks continue to form an Allen County public defender’s office

California:

Chesa Boudin, reformer public defender, wins election as San Francisco’s new DA

How Chesa Boudin, a public defender who never prosecuted a case, won SF DA race

LA’s race for district attorney heats up further as public defender Rachel Rossi jumps in

Latest ‘reformer’ to challenge DA Lacey promises to end ‘archaic’ approach to justice

Santa Barbara public defender’s office launches text message pilot program

Judge’s concern about lawyers liking him sometimes interfered with ethics compliance, commission says

State judicial panel votes to remove Contra Costa judge Laettner from bench

Georgia:

Report: Impasse blocks Chatham County trials

Editorial: Free up funds to address court logjam (Chatham County)

Local public defender teaches at Harvard (Hall County)

Oregon:

Legal service discrepancies demand probe (Yamhill County)

Pennsylvania:

Pa. is treating more opioid overdoses as homicides. Defense lawyers are learning to fight back

County fills two public defender posts (Crawford County)

New York:

Highest-paid Syracuse lawyer on taxpayer dime is indicted on perjury charge

New Hampshire:

Man accused for church shooting will face additional charges for beating a public defender

Connecticut:

Immigration agents, activists and new laws collide in a Connecticut courthouse confrontation

Avon World War II veteran still serving at age 100

Indiana:

County Oks public defender, highway hires (Elkhart County)

Tennessee:

Greenway joins public defender office (Hamblen County)

New York:

Legal aid public defender Kelvin Richards enters the North Shore City Council race

Of Interest:

These prosecutors won office vowing to fight the system. Now, the system is fighting back.

Opinion: The Supreme Court is thinking about giving police a new excuse to pull you over

How Trump is reshaping the courts

11/7/19

National:

PBS NewsHour Broken Justice, Episode 1 - Triage

Broken Justice: How relying on a public defender can mean you fall through the cracks

Alaska:

Alaska public defender agency meets Constitutional duty, but has several shortcomings

Alaska public defender agency review recommends changes

Report: Public defenders office struggles with retention, recruitment

Report highlights staffing issues at public defender

Dunleavy administration disputes public defender caseloads, but recommends reforms

Wyoming:

Lawmakers propose standards for public defender representation

Public defender bill fails in committee

Massachusetts:

Showdown over shortage of lawyers for poor heading to SJC

Oklahoma:

‘Important step forward:’ Pardon and parole board recommends commutation for more than 500

Wisconsin:

Lawmakers consider pay bump for Wisconsin public defenders

Judges: End jailing people for unpaid fines in Rock County

Oregon:

Portland area public defender say the cash bail system is broken. They’re working to change it.

Public defender lose state contract, accused of misconduct

Louisiana:

Saints’ Demario Davis hosts forum calling for raise in Orleans public defenders’ budget

Florida:

Local public defender teaches at Harvard (Hall County)

California:

Watch Merced County public defender explain his vision for his department

After decades of visiting his parents in prison, this lawyer wants to be San Francisco’s next DA

Too close to call: Suzy Loftus widens lead over Chesa Boudin in SF district attorney race

Virginia:

How Parisa Dehghani-Tafti could shape Arlington’s legal landscape

Nevada:

Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak names indigent defense board director and members

Of Interest:

Is the war on drugs over?  Arrest statistics say no.

A jail increased extreme isolation to stop suicides. More people killed themselves.

11/1/19

In Memoriam:

Jonathan Gradess, Legal Defender of the Poor, Dies at 72

Florida:

Despite common belief, Floridians can’t always get a free public defender

Mississippi:

Left behind: Public defenders underpaid, have little oversight

Alaska:

As Alaska public defenders office are floundering, Juneau holds steady

South Carolina:

How local courts sidestep the right to an attorney

Ohio:

Limitations on attorney access for Cuyahoga County jail inmates a ‘constitutional violation,’ public defender says

Public defender seeks more employees, space (Ashtabula)

Washington:

Spokane County gets conflicting reports about nonprofit public defense

Yakima judges say setting bail requires balancing rights and safety

Column: A (not so fond) farewell to prison life

New York:

New York state judges are jailing people who can’t afford their fines

DAs trained how to keep people in jail despite new bail law

Warren County to hire new employees for criminal law changes

Wisconsin:

Lawmakers consider pay bump for Wisconsin public defenders

‘A debtor’s prison:’ Judges want to end jailing people for unpaid fines

How a little pot can lead to big consequences for tens of thousands of Wisconsin residents

Gov. Evers names public defender Milton Childs as new judge Milwaukee County

Joint finance holds public hearing on defender’s office funding

Louisiana:

Orleans public defenders office to call for increased city funding with Nov. 2 second line

New Orleans public defenders punished for locating key witness

Illinois:

Appeals Court overturns Cook County ban on jailing 12-year-olds, public defender vows appeal

After child witness recants two decades later, an Illinois man sues both the prosecutors and public defender involved in his murder trial

New Hampshire:

Assault highlights how N.H jails handle lawyer-client meetings

Maryland:

Hartford murder trial postponed after not enough jurors could be found

California:

Andrade named public defender Merced County

Event recap: Reforming the prosecution system: Addressing wrongful convictions and mass incarceration

Governor taps deputy public defender for Napa judgeship

Tennessee:

Eric Lutton appointed Knox County public defender

North Carolina:

Salisbury attorney Darrin Jordan named indigent defense services chair

Nebraska:

Gage County approves public defender contract

Arizona:

Terrell named new (La Paz) public defender; what does the public defender do?

Virginia:

Letter to the Editor: Candidate ‘misleading’

Pennsylvania:

Expungement clinic in Homewood Saturday to help with clearing criminal records

Of Interest:

Democratic candidates face questions seldom heard on campaign trail

My GPS-tracked life on parole

‘I wanted to prove people wrong and take ownership of my past’: Personal essays and art by formerly or currently incarcerated Americans

Leaving prison at 72

October

10/24/19

National:

Blog post: The Sunday scaries. Secondary traumatic stress in public defense.

South Carolina:

SC poor face trial without lawyers in municipal court. A settlement could change that.

Louisiana:

Orleans public defenders office needs more funding

Decrease in traffic fines puts financial squeeze on Louisiana public defenders

Southern University Law Center enters agreements with BRCC, Office of Public Defender

Missouri:

Boone public defenders handling large number of murder cases

Help wanted sign to go up at Missouri’s public defender office

Florida:

Federal judge: Florida can’t block felons from regaining voting rights for inability to pay fines

Being poor shouldn’t stop Florida felons from voting, judge rules in Amendment 4 case

California:

Former SLO County jail inmate drops malpractice lawsuit against public defender’s office

Public defender scrubs ethics commissioner endorsement from campaign website

Oregon:

Oregon memo says Madras public defense group manipulated caseload, concealed dysfunction

Defense attorneys for indigent clients under fire amid accusations of lying

Federal public defender Nancy Bergeson died in chokehold after surprising burglars, court records say

Alaska:

Fourth Alaska state employee files wrongful-termination lawsuit against Gov. Dunleavy (public defender)

New Hampshire:

Church shooting suspect badly beats public defender

Accused wedding shooter charged with attacking public defender in jail

Pennsylvania:

Are probationers sentenced for debts they can never pay?

Interim chief public defender appointed (Crawford County)

New Jersey:

Public defender: Clients ‘plead’ not to be sent to Greystone

Idaho:

Best defense: Grant to allow public defender’s office to go on hiring spree (Bannock County)

Indiana:

This nonprofit wants to bail out as many people as possible in Indianapolis

Hawaii:

Deputy public defender launches campaign for Honolulu prosecutor

North Carolina:

Local attorneys name top picks for new public defender, open District Court seat

Guilford County bars to nominate replacements for public defender and judge

Illinois:

Changes made in defender’s office (Kankakee)

Tennessee:

Coria appointed district public defender (Anderson County)

Virginia:

Public defender Douglas to step down after 32 years

Washington:

Tarra Simmons looks to become 1st former inmate elected to Washington legislature

Of Interest:

Life after prison for women who served decades behind bars

The false alarms that get kids arrested

Bresha Meadows thought you’d understand

Millions of children lose their parents to incarceration.  That doesn’t have to happen.

10/17/19

National:

How race impacts who is detained pretrial

Editorial: Ensure legal fairness: Detained immigrants deserve representation

Texas:

District attorney Kim Ogg summons police chiefs to oppose historic bail settlement

Editorial: Bad judges need more than wrist slaps in Texas

Starr County outsources capital murder cases

New York:

New York’s most desperate caught up in ‘crimes of poverty’

Wyoming:

Supreme Court to hear defenders arguments in November

South Carolina:

ACLU, Bluffton reach settlement on public defense

Settlement provides for right to counsel in 2 municipal courts; ACLU hopes other cities take note

Illinois:

Criminal justice reformers are making the case to end cash bail in Illinois

Why are judges sentencing people on probation for debts they won’t ever be able to pay?

Changes made in defender’s office (Kankakee)

Ohio:

Butler County public defender needs to add 12 staffers in new budget           

Commissioners hold ground on indigent defense fees (Richland County)

Richland County commissioners say indigent defendants continue to be represented in court

Washington:

Employee fired by public defender contractor can’t sue county (King County)

UW grad Lisa Daugaard may be the best qualified to bring radical criminal justice reform to Seattle

Louisiana:

Report: Decrease in traffic fines puts financial squeeze on Louisiana public defenders

EBR looks to rid delays to trial, creates 72-hour arraignments policy

Former public defender receives sentence

Ex-NO public defender pleads guilty to practicing law without a license

Pennsylvania:

As Philadelphia aims to curb racial disparities, why are police stops of black drivers skyrocketing?

Lisa Middleman – Allegheny County public defender/DA candidate

Threatened ethics complaint against Middleman in doubt

County names interim chief public defender (Crawford County)

Michigan:

State Senate finalizes plan to raise the age of legal adulthood in court system

Oregon:

Major contract ends abruptly for law firms

Indiana:

Attorney asks to withdraw from former Porter County cop’s criminal case because client spoke to media

Oklahoma:

Homeless man facing prison cleared by lab results

New York:

What Melinda Katz must know: Two men wronged by the criminal justice system offer advice to the presumptive Queens DA

California:

Editorial: Raju for public defender

Guam:

Federal public defense reappointed

10/10/19

In Memoriam:

Jonathan Gradess – Executive Director, New York State Defenders Association

National:

Supreme Court’s new term opens with arguments over unanimous juries, insanity as a criminal defense

South Carolina:

SC municipal courts must offer lawyers to poor defendants, federal judge says following ACLU lawsuit

Beaufort, Bluffton must ensure poor people have right to a lawyer as part of settlement

California:

How far will California take criminal justice reform?

The public defender running to change San Francisco’s justice system from the inside

Editorial: Manohar Raju for San Francisco public defender

“Shaping Justice” in Merced County: The life and times of Andrew Robert Schottky

Missouri:

A month after Timmons was indicted for murder, he still doesn’t have a lawyer

Greene County commission Oks paying for contract attorneys amid public defender shortage

Wisconsin:

Attempted homicide case delayed as defendants awaits appointment of legal counsel

Minnesota:

Column: When it comes to caseload and pay, public defenders are still behind the 8-ball

In Hennepin County, text and e-mail reminders of court dates reduce number of warrants

Texas:

Harris County judges criticized over pace of court-appointed lawyer reform

Complaint against visiting judge may lead to wider review (Harris County)

Gregg County faces rising indigent defense costs

County receives indigent defense coordinator grant (Hays)

New Jersey:

Bar Report – NJSBA supports recommendations to improve judicial independence and fairness in municipal courts

Arkansas:

ACLU releases prison system study urging policy makers to take action in Arkansas

Ohio:

Public defenders could see fee increase

Judges weigh in on public defenders’ fee hike

Arizona:

Ex-Maricopa County public defender says he was fired after criticizing county agencies

Pennsylvania:

Why are Pennsylvania judges sentencing people on probation for debts they won’t ever be able to pay

Chief public defender is accused of giving comp time to employees for election day campaign work (Dauphin County)

County looking to fill office of public defender’s two top jobs (Crawford County)

New York:

The public defenders’ burden (Monroe County)

Closing Rikers: Competing visions for the future of New York City’s jails

County looks to add full-time assistant public defender position (Montgomery County)

Florida:

21-year-old sentenced to 10 days in jail for missing jury duty

Maryland:

Mosby lists 25 Baltimore police officers as discredited; prosecutors begin wiping out 790 convictions

Nebraska:

County board delays action on public defender contract (Gage County)

Michigan:

New judge’s former law partner takes up office she built (Isabella County)

Mississippi:

Public defender gets digs (Pike County)

Of Interest:

Arrests for low-level crimes are plummeting, and the experts are flummoxed

10/3/19

National:

The 1994 crime law hogs the legal reform spotlight. But a lesser-known law deserves more attention.

‘Shake down’ culture of U.S. Courts hits poorest Americans: Judge

South Carolina:

Right to attorney not assured for all low-income criminal defendants in SC

Wyoming:

Campbell County public defender dispute in Supreme Court

Public defender, Circuit Court settling issue in Supreme Court

Missouri:

Director of Missouri’s embattled public defender system resigning after four years

Oklahoma:

High caseloads continue to stress public defender system

Ardmore municipal judge accused of violating constitutional laws

Wisconsin:

Bill would increase public defender pay

Virginia:

Most public defenders in Richmond make less than a secretary in the prosecutor’s office.  They want a raise.

Tennessee:

Justice orgs challenge Nashville bail-related rule as ‘illegal and wrong’

Arizona:

Criminal suspects can’t be forced to pay for their own GPS monitoring, court rules

Pennsylvania:

Penn State law clinic urges Pa. public-defender system for immigrants facing deportation

Pennsylvania high court passes on death penalty review

AG to charge top public defender in Dauphin County

Louisiana:

Defense and judge spar over contact with recanting accuser in New Orleans rape case

Judge questions public defenders about their relationship with rape victim

‘I’ve never seen anything like this:’ Orleans public defenders ask to be moved off rape case

Minnesota:

Ramsey County improperly kept info about first St. Paul cops from defense attorney, judge rules

Break the ice: Public defender back ‘where heart has always been’

Kansas:

Public defender says government owes it legal fees for misconduct in Leavenworth taping case

Federal public defender seeks $224,000 as contempt sanction

Michigan:

New public defender position created in Ionia County

Nebraska

Public defender to remain ¾ position (Adams County)

California:

County public defender IT modernization well underway (Los Angeles)

New Solano public defender says the job is ‘incredibly rewarding’ and tough

Chesa Boudin is a public defender who wants to be San Francisco DA

Washington:

Spokane public defender to compete Thursday on Jeopardy

Seattle division ATF agent’s Nazi tattoo and alleged racist acts could compromise criminal cases, lawyers say

Of Interest:

Opinion: A conservative case for expunging criminal records

A brutal murder, a wearable witness, and an unlikely suspect

September

9/26/19

National:

Death-row inmates challenge post-conviction rules (re appt of counsel)

Justices’ DC sniper case examines teen murderers’ sentences

Wisconsin:

Bill seeks to boost pay progression funding for public defenders

Federal court won’t try to fix Wisconsin public defender system

While defense attorneys await a pay increase, fewer willing to take public defense cases

Missouri:

Heavy caseloads and long hours are taking a toll on Missouri’s public defenders
Missouri public defenders pay high price to ensure clients are innocent until proven guilty

Head public defender sounds constitutional alarm at Northwest

Georgia:

Public defender council would furlough staff to meet Governor’s budget cuts

Michigan:

An update on the Michigan Indigent Defense Commission Act

Ionia County chief public defender ‘caught off guard’

Long career leads public defender Karen Groenhout to Livingston County, larger public defender office

Washington:

Spokane County dedicates quarter of a million dollars for defense of accused Freeman shooter

District of Columbia:

Opinion: Justice sometimes needs a do-over

Louisiana:

One in 7 adults in New Orleans have a warrant out for their arrest, new data shows

New York:

Opinion: The state needs to support public defense

Opinion: Sentenced to death by incarceration in New York state prison

Big influx of 17-year-olds poses next ‘raise the age’ test

County gives public defender larger staff (Delaware County)

Prosecutors and defenders sue ICE over arrests in and around courthouses

Kentucky:

Conviction or not, seized cash is ‘cost of doing business’ in Louisville

Ohio:

New interview process for condemned inmates seeking mercy

California:

Contra Costa board of supervisors suspend criminal justice fee

Should cop charged with secretly recordings (sic) teens be tried? Judge to decide

Hearing begins for sheriff’s sergeant charged with eavesdropping

Interim Solano public defender gets permanent position

SF health dept. allowed mental patient to skip waitlist for psych facility – solely to avoid legal scrutiny

Utah:

Fired lawyer says Weber County attorneys disparaged indigent defense, Utah Supreme Court

Texas:

Judges confront commissioners on budget, indigent defense (Montgomery County)

Travis County, 5th biggest in Texas, adopts $1.2 billion budget

County to enable pilot Padilla program (Hays County)

Colorado:

Glenwood murder suspect airs grievances in court hearing

Virginia:

Delegate Marcus Simon’s Richmond report

Tennessee:

Tennessee AG asks to execute 9 more death row inmates, a move that ‘surprised’ attorneys

Georgia:

Law firm partner appointed to Georgia Resource Center’s board of directors

Alabama:

Public defender sees father’s decline from opioids

Of  Interest:

Why juries need expert help assessing jailhouse informants

Are a disproportionate number of federal judges former government advocates?

We didn’t stand a chance against opioids

9/19/19

In Memoriam:

Larry Sullivan - Friends, adversaries mourn death of Delaware’s longtime chief public defender

National:

Reservation residents face a long road to justice

Prison Policy Initiative: How many people in your state go to local jails every year?

Wisconsin:

Private attorneys get pay increase to help public defenders

Public defenders trying to deal with wave of new body cam video

Alaska:

Judge: case of slain Mountain Village woman shows how Alaska’s justice system is failing

Anchorage attorney named Alaska public defender

Washington:

Editorial: Privatizing the public defender’s office is an idea worth exploring

Georgia:

Georgia’s criminal justice system faces cuts as part of Gov. Kemp’s efficiency plan

Defense team asks state to pay for legal experts in Tara Grinstead case

New circuit public defender recognized, congratulated at Chatham County commission meeting

Catoosa County approves new location for public defender’s office

California:

What to expect when arrested for a crime in Ventura and Santa Barbara – Part I

Supervisors to interview Solano public defender candidates in special meeting

A homicide detective’s dishonesty was kept secret for years. Now it could upend criminal cases (Los Angeles)

Public defender’s office issues complaint to sheriff about deputy-involved shooting that killed dog (San Francisco)

SF public defender calls deputy shooting ‘preventable and unnecessary tragedy’

Michigan:

Ionia County considering partnering with other counties for indigent defense

Register of deeds office could relocate to make room for public defender’s office (Livingston County)

Illinois:

Officials set aside differences (Kankakee)

Nevada:

Public defenders moving to use Supreme Court decision on jury trials in domestic violence cases; victim advocates worried

Louisiana:

East Baton Rouge parish jails people at rates far higher than New Orleans and Lafayette: Here’s why

Wyoming:

Opinion: Body cameras beneficial, if courts follow the law

Virginia:

Prosecutors in Prince George’s county will no longer recommend cash bail for defendants

New Jersey:

NJSBA to Supreme Court: Tort claims protections should extend to legal malpractice actions for all attorneys providing representation on behalf of the state

New York:

Reform for the reformed

When prosecutors bury NYPD officers’ lies

Hawaii:

Prosecutor’s, public defender’s office team up to offer homeless services

Rhode Island:

More than 4 years after initial nomination, top public defender in R.I confirmed to federal bench

Florida:

Former public defender Matt Shirk censured, reprimanded and fined $6K by ethics commission

Missouri:

Director of Missouri public defenders emphasizes 6th Amendment rights at Constitution Day

Maryland:

Meet Melanie Shapiro – advocate for change

Nebraska:

Supervisors discuss making public defender full time (Adams County)

Of Interest:

Predictive policing poses discrimination risk, think tank warns

Opinion: How would you spend a life sentence?

Phone tracking data is notoriously unreliable. So why are we still using it in court?

9/13/19

Reports:

Brennan Center - A Fair Fight: Achieving Indigent Defense Resource Parity

Balancing the scales of justice

More $$$s needed to end ‘crisis’ in U.S. public defender system: study

New report highlights failure of Missouri, other states, to fund public defenders

Prison Policy Initiative - State of Phone Justice: The biggest priorities for prison and jail phone justice

Human Rights Watch – “Get on the Ground!”: Policing, Poverty, and Racial Inequality in Tulsa, Oklahoma

National:

Addicted to fines: Small towns in much of the country are dangerously dependent on punitive fines and fees

Letter to the Editor: Inside the jail

Montana:

Contract public defenders who lost suit over pay cut appeal to Montana Supreme Court

Public defender contract attorneys appeal rate reduction

Vermont:

Northeast kingdom defenders worry hiring problems harm clients’ rights

North Dakota:

Workforce shortage in North Dakota impacting both prosecutors and public defenders

Washington:

Facing turnover, huge caseloads and complaints, Spokane County considers turning public defender’s office into nonprofit

Opinion: Spokane County is interested in privatizing the public defender office; is that a good idea?

Alabama:

Public defender office coming to Mobile County

Oregon:

Supreme Court ruling on unanimous jury verdicts could throw decades of Oregon convictions into question

California:

LA County may soon create a civil justice defense program to address the collateral consequences of incarceration

CA lawmakers pass historic bill abolishing copays in jails and prisons

SF public defender demands answers over mentally ill inmates languishing in jail

He was a child on incarcerated parents.  He could be San Francisco’s next district attorney.

Public defender firm partners honored (Santa Cruz)

Ohio:

Knox County officials ponder increase in public defense rates

Michigan:

Ionia County public defender asks again for pay raise, but commissioners unconvinced

Opinion: Improve Michigan’s youth justice system

New York-based public defense practice signs lease in Detroit’s financial district

Texas:

(Hunt) County may renew membership in death penalty defender program

Hunt County renews membership in death penalty defender program

Massachusetts:

Legislators weigh public defender-like system for tenants facing eviction

Nevada:

Barbs exchanged as public defenders, prosecutors argue cash bail case before Nevada Supreme Court

Virginia:

Body cam workload overwhelms some Virginia public defense attorneys

Police body cameras are capturing so much footage it’s driving some defense attorneys to quit

Pennsylvania:

Atty funding woes key in Pa. death penalty fight

Pa. Justices grill defense attorney, Phila. DA on their bid to scuttle death penalty

The King’s Bench, the death penalty and the matter of race

Florida:

For first time in decades, new faces will fill top prosecutor and defender jobs (Broward County)

Rhode Island:

Senate confirms public defender McElroy for U.S. District Court

Iowa:

Citing conflict of interest, public defenders want off Colfax murder trial

Illinois:

Local psychiatrist’s career move increasing burden on court system, colleague

Rock Island County public defender has resigned. No reason given for Baron Heintz’s action

Arizona:

Opinion: In dealing with drug epidemic, look to alcohol for solution

Of Interest:

Next arena for criminal justice reform: A roof over their heads

Student loan forgiveness program continues to create headaches for borrowers

9/5/19

In Memoriam:

NORMAN LEFSTEIN, professor, author, leader, public defender, mentor, friend, and "architect of the modern indigent defense reform movement." May his memory be a blessing.

Tribute from ABA SCLAID, the Criminal Justice Section and the Section on Civil Rights and Social Justice

Hanlon Tribute, National Association for Public Defense

Thou Shall Not Ration Justice - Metzger and Davies

IU McKinney School of Law Tribute

Report:

Prison Policy Initiative: Arrest, Release, Repeat: How police and jails are misused to respond to social problems

National:

States are trying to change a system that keeps poor people in jail. The bail industry is blocking them.

Hard-won tips on how to get student loan forgiveness, from people who did

Does the Fed bench need more ex-public defenders?

Is your hometown balancing its budget by fining everybody it can? Here's how to find out

Wisconsin:

Broke in a broken system: Probation holds clog Wisconsin jails

Broke in a broken system: Justice delayed: Shortage of attorneys leaves poorest defendants in jail as cases drag on

Broke in a broken system: Wisconsin's bail system 'burns the poor'

Racine County's criminal attorney appointments skyrocket

Louisiana:

Opinion: How two overworked public defenders and six judges left a New Orleans man with a life sentence

Orleans Parish criminal court financing in question after appeals court upholds 'debtor's prison' ruling

Metro council approves more funding for EBR DA's office, public defenders

Indicted former Jefferson Parish Councilman Chris Roberts to get a public defender

Ex-Orleans public defender arrested, accused of practicing law without a license

Woman posing as New Orleans attorney twice failed ethics exam for license, records show

Texas:

Judges have 'unchecked power' over legal counsel for poor Texans

$20 million state grant comes through for indigent defense (Travis County)

State grant approved for public defender office (Travis County)

Travis County's public defender office is officially funded

Opinion: Badly needed jail diversion programs coming to Hays County

Washington:

Spokane County considers privatizing public defender's office, prompting concern, criticism

Officials "back to the drawing board" in finding lawyer for Douglas

California:

Afraid of jail? Buy an upgrade: How California's pay-to-stay jails create a two-tiered justice system

(San Bernardino) County public defender stops in Victorville

Solano public defender's office hosts AmeriCorps/VISTA member

Podcast - Scott Anders and the Orange County jail informant scandal

Iowa:

Lawyers: Iowa public defender's side police job a conflict

Utah:

Restructuring Summit County's public defender system with new state aid provides progress, hurdles

Idaho:

Grant funds 8 more lawyers for public defender (Kootenai County)

Missouri:

Lamar Johnson's supporters hope for a reprieve after his 24 years in prison

Larry Ferrell, Gary Fuhr named to public defender commission

Michigan:

Public defender's office coming after Jackson County almost sued over it

Van Buren, Allegan public defenders offices open

Podcast: Kalamazoo defender's office brings novel approach to public defending

Ionia County's personnel committee tables court budget requests

Florida:

Matt Shirk to pay $6,000 in fines for ethical lapses in office

Alabama:

'I'm not a monster': DNA clears young Bessemer man after 2 years in jail on rape, sodomy charges

Arizona:

Lawyer complains about treatment by public defenders' office after client's punch

Pima County attorney, public defender spar over prosecutions of drug users

New public defender resigns abruptly over family medical emergencies (Mohave County)

Florida:

Leon County public defenders noticing increased ICE presence in courtrooms

Colorado:

Denver attorney David Lane accepts federal appointment to defend accused El Paso shooter

Georgia:

Lawyer in APS cheating appeal wants out; judge scolds him, says no

Connecticut:

Taxpayers will foot legal bills for once-wealthy developer

Illinois:

New online tool to track Chicago gun suspects draws fire

New York:

Tiffany Cabán has only begun to fight

Pennsylvania:

Philadelphia district attorney exonerates 9 people in 19 months

Almost 10 years in, PA commission struggles to agree on sentencing reforms

North Carolina:

Ask Matt . . . who pays for murder defendant's lawyers

Ohio:

Commissioners OK small fee increase for attorneys handling indigent clients (Richland County)

Ohio public defender's office questions domestic violence bill

Court-appointed lawyers for poor tenants in housing cases level the playing field

Indiana:

Indiana public defender, Stephen Owens to retire in December

Of Interest:

He stole $50 and he got life without parole. 35 years later, he's coming home.

The missing numbers in preventing murders

The public safety myth

Opinion: How do we improve forensics?

August

8/22/19

National:

Addicted to fines

Opinion: Our justice system no longer thinks you’re entitled to a zealous legal defense

Death-row inmate couldn’t have federal defender at state hearing

Texas:

How judicial conflicts of interest are denying poor Texans their right to an effective lawyer

Wyoming:

Joint judiciary interim committee evaluates indigency standards for public defenders

Committee studies ways to solve public defender shortage

Lawmakers examine ways to address public defender shortage

Wisconsin:

Justice delayed: Shortage of attorneys leaves poorest defendants in jail as cases drag on

Student expulsion prevention project coming to Racine

Nevada:

Public defenders to use generous plea deal offered to billionaire Henry Nicholas as mode for future plea deal requests

Utah:

Column: The solution to criminal justice flaws is in the data

In Utah death penalty case, public defender says he only admitted errors to move on

California:

There’s so many murder cases in SLO right now, the public defender’s office is stretched thin

SLO Board of Supervisors approves new funding for public defenders office

California Governor promises more changes to “biased, random” justice system

Ohio:

The ‘right’ to counsel may depend on where you live

“Aisha’s law” to protect domestic violence victims getting high profile opposition

Juvenile judge asks for $40,000 in additional funding

Missouri:

Missouri public defender system rolls out pilot program in hopes of reducing overcrowded jails

Public defenders plan texts to remind clients of court dates

Missouri public defenders: Women to face abortion felonies

Official says no prosecutions for women seeking abortions

Ferrell appointed to public defender commission

New York:

Advocates for aging prisoners hope to force a debate on parole

Bleakley named Ontario County conflict defender

Pennsylvania:

Commissioners hear PD update (Wyoming County)

Goellner hired as Erie-based federal public defender

South Dakota:

Top Pennington County prosecutor, public defender disagree on changing drug laws

Louisiana:

Criminal defense lawyer argues New Orleans juvenile curfew unconstitutional

Kansas:

Federal judge holds Kansas City, Kansas, U.S. Attorney’s office in contempt of court

Virginia:

Column: A quiet success story

Federal public defender in Roanoke acknowledges office vacancies

Colorado:

Public defender in Denver, whose law license was suspended in Missouri, resigns from job here

Idaho:

County covers public defender, landfill and Scouting issues (Franklin)

Vermont:

Prosecutor sends staff to prison in a bid to counter their reflex to incarcerate

Arizona:

VIDEO: Man attacks own attorney in court assault caught on camera (Maricopa)

Michigan:

More than half of Michigan juvenile lifers still wait for resentencing

State budget delay leaves some questions

‘Holistic’ Kalamazoo defender’s office to offer legal & life guidance

Podcast: Legal help for poor role of new Kalamazoo defender’s office

Bench appointment creates vacancy in new county (PD) office (Isabella)

Florida:

Former Jacksonville public defender Matt Shirk wants to force Cristian Fernandez to testify at ethics hearing

Of Interest:

Opinion: Reform prosecutors are committed to making society fairer – and safer

Judges

8/15/19

Award:
Consider nominating a public defender program or public defense delivery system for the Clara Shortridge Foltz award, which honors outstanding achievement in the provision of services to indigent defendants.  Nominations are DUE TODAY!

National:

How cash bail hurts poor women – and what we can do about it

Juvenile defender wants to teach teachers to disrupt the school-to-prison pipeline

Why lawyer well-being can impact access to justice

Utah:

With 3 death penalty cases, Weber County is paying hundreds of thousands for defense lawyers

Governor appoints former public defender to 3rd District Court

Kansas:

Federal judge holds Kansas City, Kansas, U.S. Attorney’s Office in contempt of court

Missouri:

Pilot program aims to keep people out of jail for failing to appear in court

Wyoming:

Wyoming eyes legal defense offices for children and parents

Maryland:

Public defender’s office ‘struggling’ to find attorney for accused murderer

Louisiana:

Letter: Taping defendant’s mouth shut violated judicial norms

Illinois:

Judge allows class action over inmate ‘masturbation attacks’ against public defenders and jail workers

Pentuic selected chief public defender (Kankakee County)

Tennessee:

Mayor David Briley (Nashville) backs law change to resolve dispute between police, prosecutors

Knox County public defender Mark Stephens stepping down after 29 years of service

Ohio:

Washington County, Marietta agencies already working as a team (DL reinstatement)

Florida:

Miami-Dade won’t prosecute minor pot cases. And cops can’t act on a sniff test alone.

Editorial: Matt Shirk’s actions warrant another grand jury

New Hampshire:

NH transitions to e-courts: what it means

New York:

Oswego County may again look at having a public defender’s office

Indiana:

County will not take part in shared public defender program (Greene County)

Arizona:

New public defender to take office (Mohave County)

Michigan:

Governor Whitmer appoints Sara Spencer-Noggle to the 21st Circuit Court

Of Interest:

The complicated legacy of ‘broken windows’ policing

Attorney General Barr does not approve of your kinder, gentler elected district attorneys

8/9/19

Award:
Consider nominating a public defender program or public defense delivery system for the Clara Shortridge Foltz award, which honors outstanding achievement in the provision of services to indigent defendants.  Nominations are still being accepted!

National:

US says ex-Peruvian President may not deserve free lawyer

Opinion: Criminal defense lawyers are people too

Missouri:

Missouri public defender suit settlement faces fierce resistance from state attorney general

Florida:

Broward public defenders accuse head prosecutor of “institutional failures” of justice

Wasteful spending & freebies: How Matt Shirk left office

Scathing state audit ‘no surprise’ to current public defender (Jacksonville)

Illinois:

Public defender unloads on Superintendent Johnson over gun database (Cook County)

Police head rejects criticism of gun crimes website (Cook County)

City, county officials to hold crime summit (Cook County)

County board approves public defender salary increase (Kendall County)

Missouri:

Stopped, ticketed, fined: The pitfalls of driving while black in Ferguson

Texas:

Travis County commissioners approve updates to state grant, oversight committee for public defender’s office

El Paso shooter assigned public defender

Hays County seeks grant for immigrant defense program

Pennsylvania:

Allegheny County launches ‘Project Reset’ to help residents expunge criminal records

Public defenders receive painting, photo (Adams County)

Progressive independent Lisa Middleman kicks off campaign for Allegheny County DA

Louisiana:

State Supreme Court updates standards for drug courts throughout the state to require confirmation testing

After long halt, Dakota Theriot death penalty prosecution to move forward with state board paying for defense

North Carolina:

Racism tainted their trials. Should they still be executed?

Kentucky:

Running away or skipping school could get a kid locked up. Now that’s changing.

Tennessee:

Cyntoia Brown released from prison after celebrity support

Utah:

Role of LDS Church, work of a public defender questioned as death row inmate Douglas Lovell seeks another trial

New York:

Tiffany Cabán may have conceded, but she still changed everything

Melinda Katz vows criminal justice reform, end to cash bail if elected Queens DA

Immersed in real-life law – and loving it

Massachusetts:

Massachusetts should take fresh look at non-lawyer delivery of legal services

Wisconsin:

Snapshot: Kenosha attorney raced his way through law school

New Jersey:

Legal studies major reflects on internship with public defender’s office

Of Interest:

Once tough-on-crime prosecutors now push progressive reforms

8/2/19

Award: 
Consider nominating a public defender program or public defense delivery system for the Clara Shortridge Foltz award, which honors outstanding achievement in the provision of services to indigent defendants.

In Memoriam:

La Paz County (AZ) public defender Arthur Higgs dies

Report:

The Sixth Amendment Center - The Right to Counsel in Wayne County, Michigan: Evaluation of Assigned Counsel Services in the Third Judicial Circuit

National:

Opinion: When a police officer kills, let public defenders investigate

The US said a California cherry-picker went to Pakistan for terrorist training. Now the case has collapsed.

U.S. federal death penalty protocol faces fresh legal scrutiny

Former public defender: DOJ plan to resume federal executions a ‘recipe for problems’

Michigan:

One lawyer. Five years. 3,802 cases.

Indigent defense investments a good first step

Public defender finds home in former recovery center (Isabella County)

Vermont:

Could a lawyer shortage compromise Vermont’s criminal justice system?

Missouri:

Analysis of latest developments in the public defender caseload suit

Louisiana:

Rather than accept responsibility, local judge punishes lawyers for pointing out her mistakes

Judge orders man duct taped. Charges public defender with contempt for recording it

Judge orders Louisiana man’s mouth taped shut after he interrupts

Texas:

Travis County approves its plan for a public defender office

Travis County’s public defender plan falls short without 24/7 representation lawyers say

Harris County approves historic bail deal, ends ‘irreparable harm’

Pennsylvania:

A new state grant program will help poor defendants in capital punishment cases. Why aren’t reformers satisfied?

Middleman says she’ll unseat DA Zappala with stepped-up ground game

Utah:

Letter: Utah legal system is unfair to the poor

Ohio:

State public defender offers system upgrade to Ohio counties

County approves pay increase for court-appointed attorneys (Allen County)

Letter: State budget reinforces defense of indigents

Lawmakers allocated more funds for Ashtabula County public defender’s office

State office aiding public defender’s office with free technology upgrades

Public defender program serves indigent clients (Clinton County)

Washington:

Elderly defendant spends over two years in Spokane County jail waiting for trial as his defenders keep quitting

‘I’ve been deserted’: 72-year-old Spokane inmate’s trial pushed back over 20 times

Florida:

Former Jacksonville public defender Matt Shirk gave away guns, money after failed re-election

Assistant public defender Andrew Darling files for Orange County sheriff

Oregon:

No more court-appointed cases for local attorney

New York:

Phony ‘public defenders’ scamming grannies for ‘bail money’: police

Connecticut:

Too many criminal convictions are wrong.  Connecticut needs a review board.

New Mexico:

DA, public safety assessment differ on release decisions

Arizona:

Federal public defender pushes Arizona for more information on lethal injection drugs

Illinois:

Kendall Co. state’s attorney’s salary raised to $173,744.77 per annum; public defender also gets raise

Colorado:

New public defender believes in the mission of the office (Roaring Fork Valley)

North Carolina:

Meet David Smith: Lawyer retires after 22 years as a public defender

Of Interest:

Lawyers press case that 9/11 confessions given to FBI are tainted

Beyond one-liners: A guide to the democratic debate on criminal justice

 

July

7/26/19

Announcement: The American Bar Endowment has released information on its Opportunity Grant Program. We encourage all public defense organizations to review the information and consider applications for appropriate projects.

National:

States must abolish juvenile fees. They’re putting families in debt.

Joe Biden’s time as a public defender was a brief line on his resume.  Now it’s a virtue signal for his campaign.

Wisconsin:

Wanted: Public defenders

What’s the fix to public defender problems?

The public defender’s office and the state’s attorneys office battle attorney shortage

Cano on public defense

Massachusetts:

Amid shortage, lawyers offered temporary emergency rate to represent poor clients in Hampden County district courts

Missouri:

Order would set rules for public defenders

Utah:

Robert Gehrke: Utah is not living up to the Constitution and failing poor people accused of crimes

A day in the life of a Utah public defender – a whole bunch of cases and not enough time

Illinois:

8 Illinois inmates given a choice whether to renegotiate their sentences

Illinois inmates allowed to renegotiate sentences due to unlicensed public defender

New York:

Public defender says office relocation will save money and avoid conflicts (Chenango County)

Ohio:

Local courts searching for attorneys to take public defender cases (Allen County)

Texas:

Travis County commissioners consider cost-saving changes to public defender’s office grant proposal

County (Travis) unveils $1.19 billion preliminary budget

Opinion: Right oversight needed for Bexar County indigent defense

Washington:

Spokane suspect, 72, has waited 30 months in jail as his attorneys keep quitting

Seminars planned on how to lower legal financial obligations allowed by state law since 2018

Wave of retiring judges means huge turnover in King County Superior Court

Oregon:

Study finds jail before trial doubles incarceration changes in Oregon

Florida:

Miami officials: Most people who owe fines and fees can vote

California:

Mendicino County attorneys in Public Defender, DA offices prepare for strike

Opinion: Open forum: A jury of your peers? Not for black men in California

Rhode Island:

Opinion: Senate should approve R.I. judge

Court extends registration deadline, amends indigent defense rates

Ohio:

Ohio’s Aisha’s law shows the complexities, detours of legislative process

Virginia:

Residents, officials ask for more time to review mental health court program (Arlington County)

Maryland:

Community conversation with Charles County public defender’s office to be held July 27

Michigan:

Glaser hired to head up new county legal office (Branch County)

Tennessee:

Public defender Bo Burk named president of law conference

Of Interest:

With storied history, NAACP celebrates 110 years of service to America

Private surveillance is a lethal weapon anybody can buy

Opinion: Two extraordinary exonerations show the failure of our justice system

7/19/19

Announcement: The American Bar Endowment has released information on its Opportunity Grant Program. We encourage all public defense organizations to review the information and consider applications for appropriate projects.

In Memoriam:

Lewis Stein, former Morris (NJ) public defender and bar president

National:

The shocking lack of lawyers in rural America

ICYMI: The year of the public defender

Alaska:

Already shorthanded, public defender agency could suffer following new vetoes

Massachusetts:

Hampden public defender crisis reaches boiling point

Texas:

Travis County’s public defender office will have a seven-member oversight board

Despite property tax limits, Travis County remains committed to public defender’s office

Harris County hires more lawyers for public defender’s office

Louisiana:

How a criminal justice reform became an enrichment scheme

Wisconsin:

Despite 100-plus calls, no attorney for suspects in Wells Fargo robbery, kidnapping

Michigan:

County indigent defense facing crisis (Branch County)

Utah:

County receives grant to hire additional public defender, easting heavy caseload

Ohio:

Allen County looking into creating a public defender’s office

Delaware:

Public defender stabbed, his former client arrested near courthouse

Washington:

Despite reform attempts, court-imposed costs burden low-income defendants

Opinion: Cash bail system is unjust

Connecticut:

State audit results in new rules about who gets a public defender

Georgia:

Investigator for public defender’s office says she was fired for blowing whistle on boss

Virginia:

Arlington County aims to launch mental health court

Illinois:

Illinois puts ankle monitors on thousands.  Now it has to figure out who gets tracked – and why

New charges filed against unlicensed public defender

Cases handled by fake attorney resulting in incarceration all renegotiated

California:

Oakland Council limits policy warrantless searches of parolees, probationers

Conflicting information on breached jail phone calls sends Orange County defense attorneys to court

Ohio:

Public defender’s office rescinds Zban’s firing

New Jersey:

Firing N.J. judges for decisions in rape cases is a terrible idea, defense attorneys say

District of Columbia:

Student Voices: Going against the government at the office of the federal public defender in DC

Rhode Island:

Friends, colleagues, opponents laud public defender with ALS at fundraiser in E. Greenwich

West Virginia:

Richard Walker: Working to defend the residents of Northern WV

Of Interest:

Opinion: Would you trust the police officer who writes ‘It’s a good day for a chokehold’?

Opinion: How much should juries rely on expert testimony?

I’m 31. I’m a lawyer. And I’m still getting stopped by the police.

7/11/19

Announcement: The American Bar Endowment has released information on its Opportunity Grant Program. We encourage all public defense organizations to review the information and consider applications for appropriate projects.

National:

Opinion: The year of the public defender

The census case shows why we need a defender general

Digital jail: How electronic monitoring drives defendants into debt

The problem with Tiffany Caban and the new cult of ‘progressive prosecutors’

More than law: Family defense attorneys as relationship builders

Oregon:

Oregon’s public defense system receives much-needed funding

Texas:

A poor defense (Victoria County)

Travis County commissioners appoint work group to revise proposal for public defender’s office

Leadership program kicks off with Corsicana lawyers (Future Indigent Defense Leaders)

Local district courts to start looking out of district for indigent defense attorneys

Alaska:

Gov. Dunleavy signs legislation to repeal, replace crime-reform measure SB 91

List of Dunleavy’s line-item budget veto (including $400,000 + from public defense and entire legal aid budget)

As America celebrates its independence, local attorneys remind us of the importance of jury duty

California:

SLO County public defender’s office accused of malpractice

Former San Luis Obispo County jail inmate files suit against his public defender

Boudin runs for District Attorney (San Francisco)

Santa Clara County deputy public defender recounts goring at running of the bulls

Delaying the inevitable: Many police agencies withhold records in new era of transparency

SJ public defender’s office staffers accused of mocking LGBT client, harassing worker

Public defender contract challenged by Santa Cruz civil grand jury

Free clinic aims to help Fresno residents clear their records of cannabis-related crimes

Pennsylvania:

Criminal records can be a ‘life sentence to poverty.’ This state is automatically sealing some.

Philly D.A. wipes out fines and fees for impoverished defendants

Philly public defender suit seeks to blow up “unlawful” probation detainers

Guest commentary: Who’s the culprit in Philly’s murder rate?

Lawyers volunteer to help people with criminal records land jobs in model Montgomery County program

Florida:

Ron DeSantis signs Amendment 4 bill, limiting felon voting

A judge is accused of dismissing mental illness.  These lawyers want him off their cases.

‘Catastrophic’ IT issue accidentally deletes some of Duval County’s court calendars

Utah:

County weighs in on local, state battle to improve public defender system

West Virginia:

Rate increase for court-appointed counsel in West Virginia

Rhode Island:

Court extends registration deadline, amends indigent defense rates

Idaho:

First chief public defender hopes to set high bar for defense (Blaine County)

New Mexico:

New Mexico Supreme Court vacates two remaining death sentences

Michigan:

Kalamazoo Defender begins work as public defender for county

Mississippi:

Number of days inmates send in county jail significantly decreased

Indiana:

Indiana high court puts county public defender on probation (Howard County)

New York:

Pride Day letter to NYPD urges reflection on over-policing and anti-LGBTQIA discrimination

NYS’s top court gives prosecutors green light to conceal evidence from defendants

Louisiana:

WDSU Editorial: The Orleans public defenders office outmatched

Public defender accused of practicing without license falsified hiring documents, according to OPD

Minnesota:

Courts try a new approach to a continuing problem

Illinois:

New law aims to take sticker shock out of court costs

South Carolina:

Derek Bush: Answering the call to service

Ohio:

Ohio’s public defenders hopeful that new budget will bring relief

Ex-public defender director defends reputation (Trumbull County)

Work underway on new office for public defenders (Washington County)

Georgia:

Savannah public defenders get help to assist in defending criminal clients

Chatham County chief assistant public defender Lewis retires after lengthy criminal defense career

Maryland:

Judge Clayton Greene Jr. retires from Maryland’s highest court

Kentucky:

Kentucky bar association names its judge and lawyers of the year

Of Interest:

Can racist algorithms be fixed?

‘You don’t know what you did for me’: Released from prison by Obama, now on the dean’s list

June

6/27/19

Announcements:

PLEASE take a moment to fill out this SURVEY! Civil Rights Corps and the ABA SCLAID are hoping to hear from you about the diversion offerings in your jurisdiction! Thank you, and please feel free to send any questions or comments to olevia@civilrightscorps.org.

National:

The socialist origins of public defense

Massachusetts:

Massachusetts high court to hear appeal over lawyers for those who can't afford them

Wyoming:

WY Supreme Court grants petition to review contempt order against state public defender

Ohio:

Ohio budget likely to provide more money for indigent defense

Final budget likely to bring more money to counties for indigent defense

House OKs bill aimed at addressing public defender shortage

Wisconsin:

In depth: Public defender system bending but not yet breaking

New York:

ILS announces publication of Assigned Counsel Program Standards

For NYC defenders, pay promise is vague but encouraging

Grant set to boost salary of public defender (Chautauqua County)

Virginia:

Virginia public defenders adopting 'holistic' approach to combat recidivism

Illinois:

Lightfoot administration waffles on ending driver's license suspensions

Louisiana:

New Orleans public defender accused of practicing without law license

Case of New Orleans public defender practicing law without license turned over to state AG

Rhode Island:

Senate committee approves Mary McElroy for federal judgeship

North Carolina:

Meet Gatson County's new public defender

Florida:

BSO responds to public defender's demand for answers on 2 inmate deaths in 1 week

Arkansas:

Judge Griffen asks Supreme Court to restore him to capital cases

New York:

Public defender Tiffany Cabán declares 'stunning' victory in Queens district attorney race

California:

Anna Nicole Smith's former lawyer, boyfriend Howard K. Stern now an LA public defender

Pennsylvania:

Long-time public defender announces bid for Allegheny County DA

Indiana:

Complex questions about justice center site safety concern prosecutor, public defender

Ohio:

Cuyahoga County prosecutor, public defender and judges support charter amendment legislation to return sheriff to elected position

U.S. Supreme Court - Criminal Justice Rulings

Excluding black jurors in Curtis Flowers case violated Constitution, Supreme Court rules

Justices nix heavy sentences for repeat sex offenders

Neil Gorsuch is no friend to criminal defendants

Neil Grosuch and Brett Kavanaugh just fought over the rights of the accused. Gorsuch won.

Of Interest:

Liberating criminal justice data: How a Florida law provides a blueprint for the nation

Wanted: Lawyers for rural America

Should we be afraid of AI in the criminal-justice system?

The school-to-prison pipeline: how the criminal justice system fails at-risk kids

6/20/19

Announcements:

PLEASE take a moment to fill out this SURVEY! Civil Rights Corps and the ABA SCLAID are hoping to hear from you about the diversion offerings in your jurisdiction! Thank you, and please feel free to send any questions or comments to olevia@civilrightscorps.org.

Report:

Council of State Governments Justice Center: Confined and Costly: How supervision violations are filling prisons and burdening budgets

National:

Nearly 500,000 in jail without a conviction

This psychologist explains why people confess to crimes they didn’t commit

Opinion: Public defenders as prosecutors: Unanswered questions

Louisiana:

Baton Rouge public defender cites 'excessive workloads' in request to drop some indigent defendants

Trial for East Baton Rouge Parish chief public defender underway

EBR office of public defender requests reduction in case load for attorneys

Massachusetts:

Springfield District Court public defender office files emergency petition, asks state high court to overturn judge’s order to take cases

Wyoming:

Editorial board: Public defender issues should be addressed

Opinion: State public defender showed courage, not contempt

Oregon:

Oregon public defenders walk out to seek resources

Oregon public defenders lobby for pay, staffing overhaul

A new bar complaint against the state's top public defender comes as his agency seeks a total revamp - and a lot more money

Ohio:

Public defender loan repayment program could cost $3 million over two years

Illinois:

Investing in public defender's office a prudent move (Kankakee County)

New York:

City’s public defenders to get pay parity with city lawyers

De Blasio, Johnson agree on 2020 budget; will fund public defender pay parity

Florida:

Public defender calls on Broward Sheriff to 'immediately investigate' jail deaths after 2 inmates die in 1 week

Deaths of 2 inmates in Broward County are 'highly suspect,' public defender says

Pennsylvania:

Opinion: Will Pennsylvania abolish the death penalty?

Of Interest: Philly's weekend violence has officials eager to find answers - and place blame

South Carolina:

Richland County hikes pay for public defenders

Kansas:

Salina City commission hires public defender for municipal court

Nebraska:

Deputy public defender position created as regular position (York County)

New Jersey:

Attack on Atlantic County (public defense) attorney sparks new legislation

Bayonne municipal courtroom named for longtime public defender Hughes

Michigan:

Sara Spencer-Noggle named Isabella's first public defender

West Virginia:

Chief Justice Walker to speak to public defenders

Texas:

Local attorney earns scholarship

Of Interest:

AP Investigation: Many US jails fail to stop inmate suicides

Opinion: He won a landmark case for privacy rights. He's going to prison anyway.

How for-profit prisons have become the biggest lobby no one is talking about

This state is expected to become the first to collect prosecutor data, with breakdowns by race

Black people are charged at a higher rate than whites. What if prosecutors didn't know their race?

6/13/19

Announcements: 

Civil Rights Corps and the ABA Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants Launch Diversion Survey! As the use of diversion programs becomes more widespread, some are good and some are not so good, particularly in making sure poor individuals can participate regardless of costs. We're hoping to hear from you about the diversion offerings in your jurisdiction, and Civil Rights Corps looking to offer support to defense attorneys who are interested in making sure these programs are administered fairly. Can you take 5 minutes to complete this short survey? Thank you, and feel free to send any questions or comments to olevia@civilrightscorps.org

In Memoriam:

Daniel Homstad, Hennepin County, MN

Oregon:

‘Close to the breaking point’: Public defenders walk off job over high caseloads

Public defenders drowning in law school loans walk off job in protest

Multnomah public defenders walk out to push for reforms in Salem

Portland public defenders toil under crushing caseloads, stage work stoppage to draw attention

Oregon tries to avoid ACLU lawsuit over public defenders

Heavy workload for defense attorneys has them stretched thin

Wyoming:

State public defenders ask legislators for help with overwhelming caseload

Pennsylvania:

Pleading guilty to get out of jail (Franklin County)

Kay taking over as public defender (Snyder County)

Nevada:

Nevada to get indigent defense, outdoor recreation offices

Ohio:

State may reimburse more for indigent defense

County supports efforts to fund public defender services (Columbiana County)

County weighs public defender options (Trumbull County)

$1.25M coming to Butler County to defend needy clients

Commissioners praise indigent defense budget proposal (Meigs County)

North Carolina:

Opinion: Low pay for court-appointed lawyers shortchanges justice

Michigan:

Wayne County ups legal resources with new public defender office

Ask the judge segment: Ottawa Co. public defender Bob Hamilton

Marquette County public defender’s office celebrates opening

Washington:

Council approves 10 percent pay increase for indigent defense attorneys (Clark County)

Indigent defenders to receive pay increases

Missouri:

Bra battle growing at Jackson County jail

Black drivers in Missouri are 91% more likely to be stopped than white drivers, a report finds

South Carolina:

Richland County raises public defender’s pay to match prosecutors’

California:

Supes allocate more money for public defender (Yolo County)

County public defender reaches out to help the homeless (Los Angeles County)

Police know the mentally ill need more than handcuffs. Their response is shifting

Georgia:

Column: When prosecutors have bottomless war chests & everyone else doesn’t

Arizona:

Top prosecutors in Maricopa, Pima counties lobbied Ducey for veto on ‘repeat offender’ bill

New York:

Needing public defenders, Franklin Co. raises pay

Of Interest:

Opinion:  Study: Civil asset forfeiture doesn’t discourage drug use or help police solve crimes

You can get 5 years in prison for selling llama poop, and other ludicrous laws

Why are American prisons so afraid of this book?

Only 2% of federal criminal defendants go to trial, and most who do are found guilty

6/6/19

Announcements: 

Civil Rights Corps and the ABA Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants Launch Diversion Survey! As the use of diversion programs becomes more widespread, some are good and some are not so good, particularly in making sure poor individuals can participate regardless of costs. We're hoping to hear from you about the diversion offerings in your jurisdiction, and Civil Rights Corps looking to offer support to defense attorneys who are interested in making sure these programs are administered fairly. Can you take 5 minutes to complete this short survey? Thank you, and feel free to send any questions or comments to olevia@civilrightscorps.org.

Report:

NACDL - Shattering the Shackles of Collateral Consequences

National:

Opinion by Kamala Harris: American’s public defenders’ offices are broken.  Here’s how to fix them.

Challenges behind re-making bail

The power of ‘tough-on-crime’ prosecutors and mass incarceration in America

Wyoming:

State public defender, circuit judges try to settle their differences

Public defenders, circuit judges at odds

Local judge holds public defender director in contempt

Casper lawyers step up to take on misdemeanor cases

State public defender tells legislators Natrona County office will soon be at full staff

Oregon:

Oregon’s largest public defense group has stopped taking misdemeanor cases

Editorial: Time to reform broken public-defender system

Nevada:

Nevada creates and empowers a statewide indigent defense commission

New York:

Lawyers by day, Uber drivers and bartenders by night

Underpaid NYC public defenders demand raises from Mayor

St. Lawrence county appoints new public defender

Town justice resigns after allegedly saying he’d like to see defendants ‘swinging outside the door’

Missouri:

District public defender to Jackson County judge: ‘My attorneys are ticking time bombs’

Ohio:

Proposed Ohio program would reimburse public defenders’ student loans

Summit County calls on Ohio Senate to support more indigent defense money

Trumbull commissioners considering court-appointed defense attorneys

Tennessee:

Briley announces study of fines and fees in criminal justice system

Utah:

Public defender speaks about Alex Whipple disclosing where Lizzy Shelley’s body was located

Mississippi:

Jackson County to provide public defender services to local municipalities

Michigan:

Public defender interviews to be held later this month (Branch County)

County buys office for public defender (Branch County)

Indiana:

Chief public defender faces scrutiny by state’s high court

Ex-public defender reinstated after harassment suspension

Texas:

Are indigent Texas kids getting fair representation in court?

Governmental immunity protects district attorney who fired his assistant for acting ethically

Arizona:

Arizona’s Gault progress varies greatly by county, but reforms underway

Illinois:

Commentary: Public defender: Kim Foxx’s leadership, bond court reform are marks of progress

Fired assistant public defender now faces felony charges after practicing without license

Unlicensed public defender faces charges including theft

California:

SF public defender’s office demands SFPD release misconduct records

Opinion: SF DA George Gascón’s bold plan to address mass incarceration

Holistic defense program gets $65,000 grant (Santa Barbara)

Sonora defense attorney named Tuolumne County public defender

Nebraska:

Nebraska county court tests night court sessions

West Virginia:

Harrison County, WV’s Susan Morris strives to instill justice in communities

Of Interest:

Video hearings: The choice ‘between efficiency and rights’

Commentary: It’s time to change the way the media covers crime

Court reporters may be writing down black people’s testimonies wrong

Could prostitution be next to be decriminalized

“Good day for a choke hold”: A review of Facebook accounts of thousands of officers around the US – the largest database of its kind – found officers endorsing violence against Muslims, women, and criminal defendants.

Announcements: 

Civil Rights Corps and the ABA Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants Launch Diversion Survey! As the use of diversion programs becomes more widespread, some are good and some are not so good, particularly in making sure poor individuals can participate regardless of costs. We're hoping to hear from you about the diversion offerings in your jurisdiction, and Civil Rights Corps looking to offer support to defense attorneys who are interested in making sure these programs are administered fairly. Can you take 5 minutes to complete this short survey? Thank you, and feel free to send any questions or comments to olevia@civilrightscorps.org

Announcements: 

Civil Rights Corps and the ABA Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants Launch Diversion Survey! As the use of diversion programs becomes more widespread, some are good and some are not so good, particularly in making sure poor individuals can participate regardless of costs. We're hoping to hear from you about the diversion offerings in your jurisdiction, and Civil Rights Corps looking to offer support to defense attorneys who are interested in making sure these programs are administered fairly. Can you take 5 minutes to complete this short survey? Thank you, and feel free to send any questions or comments to olevia@civilrightscorps.org

May

5/30/19

Announcements: 

Civil Rights Corps and the ABA Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants Launch Diversion Survey! As the use of diversion programs becomes more widespread, some are good and some are not so good, particularly in making sure poor individuals can participate regardless of costs. We're hoping to hear from you about the diversion offerings in your jurisdiction, and Civil Rights Corps looking to offer support to defense attorneys who are interested in making sure these programs are administered fairly. Can you take 5 minutes to complete this short survey? Thank you, and feel free to send any questions or comments to olevia@civilrightscorps.org

Georgetown Law Center professors teaching a practicum course in Criminal Justice Technology, Policy and Law are looking for justice system partners with discrete policy and practice challenges for which the small groups in the class can design prototype solutions.  This is a great opportunity for some free assitance!  Please read the request Partner Request for more information.  Deadline for applications is June 14th.

National:

Opinion:  When a traffic ticket costs $13,000

States address the public defender crisis

Oregon:

As Oregon tries to fix public defense, potential lawsuit looms

Wisconsin:

Joint Finance approves increases to public defenders, district attorneys offices

Budget committee votes to boost district attorney, public defender pay

North Carolina:

Lawmaker’s proposal would force judges to make public defender appointments

South Carolina:

Public defenders are stepping in sooner to help keep people out of jail in Charleston

Texas:

Travis County awaits decision on state grant to fund a public defender’s office

Arizona:

AZ Republicans take money from public defenders and give it to cops

Tennessee:

Knox prosecutor’s ‘Walmart burglary policy draws state Supreme Court review

Pennsylvania:

New data reveals the racial disparities in Pennsylvania’s money bail industry

Illinois:

Edwardsville woman worked months as a public defender without actually being a licensed attorney

Madison County public defender fires assistant

California:

LA County public defender’s office win national award for outreach

Opinion: Reducing homelessness is impossible without ending mass incarceration

When police misconduct occurs, records often stay secret.  One mom’s fight to change that.

New York:

Why Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez endorsed a little-known public defender in Queens

Dutchess public defender moves into new offices

Michigan:

Public defender’s office opens in Marquette County

Jail or bail? Michigan looking at reducing inmate population

Alabama:

Jefferson Co. public defender’s office taking clothing donations, hygiene products for clients

Nevada:

Nevada passes bill to automatically restore felons’ voting rights upon release from prison

Utah:

Some class A misdemeanors may not be prosecuted in Utah County due to overworked attorneys

Why one Utah county is shifting away from low-level prosecutions

Mississippi:

Renovations needed at proposed public defender’s office (Pike County)

Louisiana:

Lunch with the court with federal public defender Claude Kelly, III

Of Interest:

White House kills plan for expanded criminal background check for federal jobs

Justice reform: A surprisingly hot topic

Two Navy SEAL war crimes trials may be ‘derailed’ over claims prosecutors spied on the defense


5/23/19

Announcement:  Georgetown Law Center professors teaching a practicum course in Criminal Justice Technology, Policy and Law are looking for justice system partners with discrete policy and practice challenges for which the small groups in the class can design prototype solutions.  This is a great opportunity for some free assitance!  Please read the Partner Request for more information.  Deadline for applications is June 14th.

National:

States address the public defender crisis

Opinion: Equal justice depends on properly funding public defenders

Missouri:

State scramble to rejoin public defender caseload suit

Louisiana:

New Orleans prosecutors routinely violate defendants’ right to counsel to keep them in jail

Louisiana bill could jail defense attorneys for doing their jobs

Wyoming:

‘Extreme’ understaffing will force public defenders to outsource misdemeanor cases

Wisconsin:

Wisconsin’s ‘constitutional crisis’ is forcing people to sit in jail without a lawyer

Dade County selected for pilot program to provide lawyers for immigrants

New York:

Handcuffed and arrested for not paying a traffic ticket

Opinion: DAs must stop fearmongering about criminal justice reforms

Police secrecy law keeps public in the dark about police misconduct

Sidney lawyer to lead new public defender’s office (Delaware County)

Texas:

In search of greater justice with a Travis County public defender’s office

New Mexico:

Public defender reacts to DA Torrez’s proposal to amend pretrial detention process

Ohio:

Commissioners receptive to county public defender’s office

Georgia:

Court officials request increase in local funds (Middle Judicial Circuit)

Lobdell to lead public defender (Toombs Judicial Circuit)

Washington:

Controversial Seattle judge sees flurry of cases pulled by public defenders

Iowa:

Police credibility: Confusion about ‘liars list’ may be depriving suspects of fair trials

Oklahoma:

Oklahoma House votes down bail reform bill

California:

Jeff Adachi receives national racial justice award: ‘He transformed our country’

Former public defender, felon, unite to help college program SOAR

Pennsylvania:

Philly public defender offices evacuated due to threat

New Jersey:

Treatment for opioid addiction, with no strings attached

Florida:

Marijuana laws may soon change in City of Sarasota

Connecticut:

Respected public defender takes on Stamford’s toughest cases for 30 years

Maryland:

Profile: Sarah S. Gannett

Of Interest:

Yes, drug-assisted treatment is needed for opioid-addicted patients in U.S. prisons

How the war on drugs kept black men out of college

Opinion: A death penalty case shows the absurdity of the worst crime bill from the ‘90s

5/17/19

Report:

ABA Ethics Opinion 486: Obligations of Prosecutors in Negotiating Plea Bargains for Misdmeanor Cases

Brennan Center for Justice - Ending Mass Incarceration: Ideas from Today’s Leaders

National:

Prosecutors must maintain ethical conduct during misdemeanor pleas, ABA ethics opinion says

Kamala Harris wants public defenders to get paid as much as prosecutors

Harris bill seeks to ease burden on public defenders

Left and right agree on criminal justice: They were both wrong before

Harvard launches an attack on the culture of liberty

Harvard shouldn’t punish Harvey Weinstein’s attorney

Five things you should know about our justice system

American Bar Endowment awards over $6.8 Million in 2019 to support critical law-related projects

Missouri:

Missouri’s top prosecutor objects to public defender’s plan

Attorney general objects to 40-hour work week for public defenders

ACLU, public defenders reach an agreement but Missouri AG intervenes

Deal reached to reduce Missouri public defender workloads

Debtors prison legislation heading to Gov. Mike Parson’s desk

Indiana:

Public defense spending in Indiana falls behind need

Louisiana:

New Orleans prosecutors routinely violate defendants’ right to counsel to keep them in jail

‘Anti-defense bill’ would put public defenders at risk of jail and hamper their work, critics say

Washington:

Public defenders tell Clark County they need pay raise

Delaware:

DE: State High Court reprimands and disqualifies prosecutors for stealing attorney-client information from defendant’s cell

Texas:

County (Hays) rejects public defender grant for a second time

Editorial: Lack of communication is the culprit (Hays County)

Public defender proposal submitted to state (Travis County)

Travis County is getting a public defender office

With differences resolved, Travis County green-lights public defender’s office

Victoria County decides against public defense partnership

Proposed legislation would give Texas public defenders priority in capital murder cases

Travis County office of parental representation provides annual report

Illinois:

Female defenders decry handling of ‘heinous’ sex conduct (Cook County)

Putnam public defender plans to remain in wake of prostitution-related charges

Putnam County’s public defender misdemeanor charges being reviewed

Ohio:

NAACP filing complaint against local public defenders (Lima and Alle Counties)

NAACP: ‘Public pretenders’ failing county

County underway addressing public defenders amid NAACP complaints

Commissioners applaud indigent defense boost (Knox County)

Oregon:

Disability group joins call to hold Oregon in contempt over mentally ill defendants’ rights

Connecticut:

Bail reform would help poor CT defendants, hurt bond industry

New Jersey:

Public defender attaked by murder suspect in court speaks out

Atlantic City murder suspect attacks public defender

Public defender’s office seeks new attorney after chief defender’s death

Michigan:

County approves indigent defense compliance plan and grant application (Cheboygan County)

Whitmer appoints McAvoy to Indignet Defnese Commission

California:

SoMa street may be renamed Jeff Adachi Way

Mississippi:

The defense rests: UM law professor Phillip Broadhead retires after 35 years as teacher, public defender

Georgia:

Nicki Vaughan, Hall County chief assistant public defender, honored for work serving children

Alaska:

Public defenders get award for 50 years of service

Kansas:

Rally demands equal justice system

Of Interest:

The ‘power of second changes’: How this 37-year-old, once in prison, is now and LSU grad

Tempers fraying, Justice continue debate on executions

The very American case of Robert Kraft and a Florida prostitution sting

Pushed out and punished: One woman’s story shows how systems are failing black girls

5/9/19

In Memoriam:

Ronald Evans (Garden City, Kansas)

National:

Sen. Kamala Harris launches bill to help public defenders

Kamala Harris' new bill would significantly aid in the funding of public defenders

4 times public defenders landed in ethical hot water

Courts tuning to text messages for court-date reminders

Louisiana:

Orleans public defenders to cut services, freeze hiring in face of revenue shortfall

The exact locations of New Orleans' crime cameras? Public defenders need a map, judge rules

Wyoming:

Campbell County public defenders no longer taking misdemeanor cases

Texas:

County pushes public defender plan forward (Travis County)

The push for a public defender office in Travis County signals problems with the system

Commentary: County should create a public defender's office that lives up to community values

After months of obstacles and discord, Travis County is closer to creating a public defender office

Funding application for county public defender's office dies on dais (Hays County)

Hays County leaders delay talk of creating public defender's office to Friday

Another avoidable tragedy in the Bexar County jail

Missouri:

Missouri's beleaguered public defenders poised to earn a small win in this year's budget

Florida:

A pregnant inmate came to term in jail. Lawyers say she was forced to give birth there - alone.

Judge: Public defender must represent Parkland massacre defendant

Whistleblowers describe culture of racism, abuse and coverups at Florida prison

Pennsylvania:

Assistant DAs, public defenders form union through Teamsters Local 771

Your view: Lehigh County has been in forefront of bail reform

Will controversy over risk assessments break Philly's touted criminal-justice reform collaboration?

Philly leaders want to end cash bail. Can they agree on how?

Pa. Senate unanimously confirms (public defender) Elliot Howsie as Common Pleas judge

County likely to conduct national search for next top public defender (Allegheny County)

At what point to do they stop? Tactics in prostitution stings raise questions in Pa.

Massachusetts:

Legal eagles: Local public defenders are dedicated to rights of the unsympathetic

Illinois:

Public defender concerned about the cost of DNA murder trial for fatally stabbed Edwardsville couple

Alabama:

Judge rules Alabama prisons fail to adequately prevent suicides

New York:

Handcuffed and arrested for not paying a traffic ticket

Washington:

Police commander: Prosecutor's office may well be public defender (King County)

North Carolina:

Bernard Condlin to return as Cumberland County public defender

Minnesota:

'Incarceration survivor' vows to add missing perspective to Minnesota's sentencing commission

Of Interest:

Bad Evidence: Ten years after a landmark study blew the whistle on junk science, the fight over forensics rages on

They're haunted by 'Ghost Warrants' years after their arrests

--------

5/3/19

In Memoriam:

Judge Damon Keith: A paragon of judicial courage

Mississippi:

Clinton mayor accuses county public defender of refusing indigent felony cases

City of Clinton: "Hinds public defender's office refuses to represent cases"

Clinton mayor calls out public defender's office

Montana:

Court: No public defender unless jail time is at stake

Louisiana:

Supreme Court panel urges revamp of Louisiana's 'user pay' criminal justice system, but implementing it will be hard

Defense attorneys asks for legal pause over lack of funding

Indiana:

Holcomb signs bill allowing regional public defender services

Courts hit with increasing public defender costs

Texas:

Travis County commissioners consider cost of public defender's office in light of revenue caps

Commissioners Court to decide next step in proposed public defender's office (Travis County)

District judges should not sue the county over bail changes

Washington:

Seattle city attorney and King County public defender say judicial system doesn't work for repeat offender with mental illness

City attorney and public defender call for judge to step down after accusations of partiality

What did Judge McKenna actually say about prosecutors? Here's the transcript.

Michigan:

Making the case for more public defenders: Scott says hiring getting 'out of control'

Opinion: Bail inequity hurts society

California:

After waves of criminal justice reforms, prosecutors now want to lock in pleas, ask defendants to give up future rights

L.A. can implement a 'civil Gideon' by better funding the public defender

Oakland jail to close to save money, in part because of sleep deprivation lawsuit

Public defender accuses SFPD of 'stonewalling' on delivering police personnel records

Orange County district attorney begins internal probe of informant scandal

Oregon:

Oregon prosecutors continue to fight criminal justice reform with fearmongering

Wisconsin:

A change in culture sought: Criminal justice reform discussed at Wingspread

Florida:

Prosecutors don’t want Nikolas Cruz's public defenders to withdraw from case

A Florida sheriff's office is accused of using excessive force. It's not the first time. (Broward County)

Illinois:

Chicago impounds innocent people's cars and soaks them in fines. Now it's getting sued

Connecticut:

Days away from his 100th birthday, Avon's Morton Katz is thriving as a public defender in criminal court in Hartford

Ohio:

Woman indicted in attack of public defender in Dayton courtroom

Pennsylvania:

EEOC sues Philadelphia defender association over attorney's depression, PTSD

Public defender had PTSD from representing sex offenders, EEOC says in disability suit

County's public defender's office to remain in Masonic Building for a few more months (Crawford County)

Maryland:

Endless trials: Baltimore police tried to kill Keith Davis Jr. Prosecutors have been trying to convict him of murder ever since.

Virginia:

Amid primary campaign, defense attorneys sign letter opposing prosecutor (Arlington County)

Nevada:

Clark County managers appoints Darin Imlay public defender

Federal public defender to fill U.S. Magistrate seat in Las Vegas

Of Interest:

Do soldiers face 'double jeopardy' in military courts?

How private equity is turning public prisons into big profits

The case against solitary confinement

April

4/25/19

In Memoriam:

Richard “Rick” Charles Davis – Former long-time Oxford Municipal Court public defender dies at 72

South Dakota:

Partnership helps connect defendants with mental health services

Texas:

Criminal defense attorney and judge settle suit over alleged retaliation involving recording

Lawyer settles with Judge accused of cutting his caseload for criticizing indigent defense appointments

Travis County work group presents proposal for new public defender’s office

Despite hurdles, Travis County makes progress in effort to create public defender’s office

Advocates law out plan for Travis County public defender office

Attacks on the Dallas DA signal trouble for the criminal justice reform movement

California:

Defendants must pay for a public defender. New bill aims to end that fee (and others)

California court ruling could change the culture of fining defendants who can’t pay

Mentally ill homeless people keep going to jail.  But a study says LA County can fix that

Sacramento County DA throws out thousands of pot convictions

Public right to attend hearings for sexual predators being challenged

Supervisors pass on deportation attorney (Yolo County)

Newly appointed public defender to be sworn in Thursday (San Francisco)

Five years later, some fear Orange County jail snitch scandal will go unpunished

Pennsylvania:

ACLU ends longstanding public defense case, says larger issues persist (Luzerne County)

Cash grab: As asset forfeiture quietly expands across PA, abuses follow

West Virginia:

Wheeling attorney has licenses suspended for over-billing

Florida:

Ex-offenders must pay to vote in divided Florida House vote

Opinion: If lawmakers don’t give former inmates a second change, they will be defying the fill of Floridians

Parkland shooter’s public defenders seek to withdraw because Cruz will inherit money

Parkland suspect may lose public defender over insurance inheritance

Georgia:

Opinion: Mental health is the next front in prison reform

Jailed men get help while women languish, Georgia lawsuit claims

New Mexico:

Program’s end means more Northern New Mexico probationers may end up in court

Colorado:

Pretrial services program bill clears another hurdle

Denver public defender turned full-time musician plays Dickens Opera House Friday

Ohio:

Woman in handcuffs attacks public defender in Dayton courtroom

Washington:

Seattle city attorney, King County director of public defense ask judge to step down

Michigan:

Berrien public defender’s office wants to add attorneys

Idaho:

County hires first chief public defender (Blaine County)

Of Interest:

Is prison necessary?  Ruth Wilson Gilmore might change your mind

A leading cause for wrongful convictions: Experts overstating forensic results

The Supreme Court’s death drive

4/18/19

Announcement: NACDL is calling for nominations for the 2019 The Champion of Public Defense Award. This award recognizes an individual or group for exceptional efforts in making positive changes to a local, county, state, or federal public defense system. Nominations are due June 10, 2019Nominate or find out more HERE.

Louisiana:

Louisiana Supreme Court vacates lower court rulings on constitutionality of DeSoto DA agreement (on PD funding)

Indiana:

Public defenders: ‘Pay now or pay later’

Michigan:

County may sue state over new public defense standards (Jackson County)

Norris only local candidate for defender (Branch County)

Pennsylvania:

ACLU drops public defender suit against Luzerne County

Public defender Elliot Howsie, in line to be an Allegheny County judge, spurs mixed reviews

Alaska:

Representatives criticize decision to rush departure of Alaska public defender

Judge to decide if state is violating rights of mentally ill

Texas:

Lubbock private defender’s office successful indigent defense influences other Texas counties

Dallas County DA John Creuzot calls new reforms ‘A step forward in ending mass incarceration’

Victoria County considers public defender office

Public defender program may come to Victoria County

Victoria County to mull public defense partnership

Travis County revisits creating public defender’s office

Support remains for a Travis County public defender’s office

Illinois:

So many felonies in Madison County, its straining the public defenders office

Legislation would let Judges depart from mandatory minimums – but only on a few crimes

New public defender brings 30-plus years of experience (Carroll County)

Public defender reports increase in felony cases (Madison County)

Florida:

Public reprimand for Broward Judge accused of mistreating (public defense) attorneys, high court rules

Can better data fix Florida prisons?

Tennessee:

Shelby County’s first female chief public defender takes her oath

New chief public defender’s vision built around ‘client-centered representation’

California:

New ‘felony murder’ law has Solano public defender’s support

San Jose: Bomb threat prompts evacuation of alternate defender’s office

Public defender to retire after more than 25 years of service (Tuolmne County)

Arizona:

Tucson man attacks lawyer following guilty verdict in murder trial

New York:

A conversation with Saratoga County assistant public defender Andrew Proler

Idaho:

Blaine County hires first in-house chief public defender to lead new office

Washington:

City of Blaine hires a new public defender

Minnesota:

St. Paul public defender on Jeopardy! on Tuesday

Of Interest:

Supreme County won’t take up case of death row inmate who claims juror discrimination against him for being gay

Bitterly divided Supreme Court says the execution of Alabama inmate can go forward hours after it was called off

4/11/19

Announcement: NACDL is calling for nominations for the 2019 The Champion of Public Defense Award. This award recognizes an individual or group for exceptional efforts in making positive changes to a local, county, state, or federal public defense system. Nominations are due June 10, 2019Nominate or find out more HERE.

National:

You’re out of prison. Now you have to get your driver’s license back.

Maine:

Report: Pay public defenders more; create new office

Report: Lacking public defenders, Maine sends poor people to jail on ‘an assembly line’

High bills, potential conflicts of interest found in legal defense system for poor Mainers

Wisconsin:

Rate change could help move public defender cases

Law would lift wages for public defenders

At 40, Kenosha County public defender’s office fills critical need

Ohio:

Commissioners react to DeWine’s public defender funding plan (Tuscarawas County)

Erie County public defender obtains boost to funding

Amendment reimburses Highland County for indigent defense

Kansas:

One in four Kansas public defenders quit last year, leaving agency ‘in crisis’

New Hampshire:

New Hampshire aims to change legal fee policy for indigent defendants

Montana:

Opinion: Don’t balance Montana budget on a rumor

California:

Only SF elects its public defender. Should that change?

Public defender calls for case review after revelation of Walnut Creek officer’s dishonesty

SF’s juvenile hall would shut down within 3 years under proposal

My parents were incarcerated when I was a baby.  Now I’m a lawer working to fix the system.

New public defender picks up battle against overzealous prosecutors in honor of Adachi

Alabama:

Jefferson County public defender resigns after claims of creating ‘racially hostil environment’

Illinois:

Chicago’s ankle monitors can call and record kids without their consent

New York:

Next year no bail for misdemeanors, non-violent felonies

“Blindfold” Off: New York overhauls pretrial evidence rules

Ulster County DA rails against NY criminal justice reforms; public defender praises them

Public defender: Positives in criminal justice reform (Geneses)

NYPD tells 350 people they don’t have the right to know if they’re in a gang database, Legal Aid says

Nevada:

Judges seek additional defender (Douglas County)

Pennsylvania:

Opinion: Excessive court costs can seem like debtors prison to poor offenders

These reform groups helped elect DA Larry Krasner. Now they want to swing Philly’s judicial elections.

South Carolina:

SC prosecutors, defenders near compromise on new court rules

Idaho:

Court costs are a trial for Clearwater County

Michigan:

Chief public defender anxious to begin work representing poor criminal defendants

County hires new Chief public defender

Washington:

Citing routine jail bookings of psychiatric patients, defense attorneys push for arrest diversion options

Vermont:

SCOV Law: What’s the right bail amount?

Nebraska:

Dodge County discussing public defender’s office

Rhode Island:

Trump renominates RI public defender to federal bench

Of Interest:

Klobuchar: On criminal justice reform, it’s time for a second step

Preet Bharara’s willful blindness

Homeless youth don’t realize how much legal aid can help them

‘Charged’ explains how prosecutors and plea bargains drive mass incarceration

Opinion: 21 more studies show racial disparities in the criminal justice system

4/4/19

Announcement: NACDL is calling for nominations for the 2019 The Champion of Public Defense Award. This award recognizes an individual or group for exceptional efforts in making positive changes to a local, county, state, or federal public defense system. Nominations are due June 10, 2019Nominate or find out more HERE.

National:

Supreme Court sees 2 similar death penalty questions very differently

Trump celebrates criminal justice overhaul amid doubts it will be fully funded

Kamala Harris as district attorney fought public defenders in push for higher bails for gun crimes

Alaska:

Alaska public defender says he plans to resign

Montana:

Montana panel gives schools, public defenders budget boosts

Opinion: Counties are not responsible for funding State Office of Public Defender program

Opinion: Cost of public defenders is out of control

Mississippi:

Meridian signs consent decree rather than risk litigation

Letter: Public defenders are attorneys

Massachusetts:

Public defenders vital to justice system

Michigan:

County public defenders’ caseload exceeds 1,100 in 2018 (Lenawee County)

Public defender interview process to start in April (Branch County)

Allegan County names chief public defender (Van Buren and Allegan Counties)

Texas:

Long wait for justice: Hurricane Harvey, limited resources keep suspects in jail for years

Ohio:

House passes bill to help pay for Pike County death-penalty cases

Alabama:

Alabama’s gruesome prisons: Report finds rape and murder at all hours

California:

Prosecutors move to clear 54,000 marijuana convictions in California

Ventura County public defender’s office launches effort to reduce jail population

Jeff Adachi public memorial held in San Francisco

Wisconsin:

‘It’s our job:’ Walworth County sees sharp rise in jury trials

North Dakota:

Indigent defense offices work hard to recruit attorneys

Washington:

Court pours cold dose of reality on Seattle’s hot homelessness debate

West Virginia:

Court suspends Welch lawyer’s license for improper billing

New York:

Cops, Das decry budget’s criminal justice overhaul

Opinion: In budgeting for lawyers’ salaries, NYC can support equal justice

Probation, public defender settle into new home (Fulton County)

New Jersey:

Did NJ bail reform cause a surge in crime?  Court analysis says no

Florida:

4 running to replace retiring Volusia-Flager public defender Jim Purdy

Saint Augustine tea party welcomes public defender candidate as speaker

Oklahoma:

Tulsa County public defender now using text reminders for court – and more

Jack Gordon brings his expertise to the public defender’s office

Pennsylvania:

Westmoreland County’s longest-serving public defender keeps giving clients his all

DA Larry Krasner pitched judges on ending Philly’s probation addiction.  Will they go for it?

North Carolina:

Guilford County chief public defender Fred Lind honored for 45 years in public service

Of Interest:

When “violent offenders” commit nonviolent crimes

German-style prison rehab leads inmate to college basketball team and dean’s list

 

March

3/28/19

Announcement: NACDL is calling for nominations for the 2019 The Champion of Public Defense Award. This award recognizes an individual or group for exceptional efforts in making positive changes to a local, county, state, or federal public defense system. Nominations are due June 10, 2019Nominate or find out more HERE.

National:

Letter: To change our racist legal system, we need to support public defenders

Text me: How messaging is helping people avoid jail

Oregon:

Public defense services pitches legislature on new, state-run model

Public defenders seek reform of ‘unconsitutional’ system

Ohio:

Editorial: The governor’s commitement to indigent defense, it’s a beginning

Editorial: Commit to indigent defense

Counties want Ohio to pay legal defense costs for those who cannot afford it

Florida:

‘We are in crisis’: Low pay spurs exodus among Miami prosecutors, public defenders

Sheriff : Defendants to be handcuffed after public defender punched in the head

Mississippi:

Baker says state ‘not there yet’ on full-time public defenders

Five express interest in public defender position (West Point)

Georgia:

The Public’s Defenders: Sixth Amendment lawyers stand for the accused

Grinstead murder defendant’s lawyers say indigent defense law unconstitutional

Texas:

Travis County already has a public defender’s office – for juveniles

Pennsylvania:

Data snapshot: What criminal justice reform looks like for one court

Column: The man who inspired the public defender system

Montco public defender commends YWCA Tri-County Area for its services for children

New York:

A public defender is running to be Queens’ next DA – on a platform o flocking up fewer people

County public defender’s office to double staff (Chautauqua)

Queen’s DA candidates endorse pay parity for public defender, prosecutors with corporate counsel

Alaska:

Claman: Let public defenders testify on crime bills in person

Michigan:

First lines of defense: Ionia, Montcalm counties’ new public defender offices are different, yet similar

Attorneys mostly optimistic about indigent defense changes  (Ionia and Montcalm)

Calhoun County chief public defender selected

Calhoun Co hires attorney to represent indigent

Arizona:

Reformers seeking changes in Arizona’s justice system see roadblock in Bill Montgomery

New Jersey:

NJ police misconduct: A lying cop ruined a man’s life. It could happen to you.

Maryland:

Opinion: Supporting public defenders supports substance use treatment

Baltimore plays catch-and-release for weed arrests

Indiana:

Public defenders express concerns over fertility fraud bill’s criminal language

Oklahoma:

New app helps cut down on missed court dates in Tulsa

Tennessee:

Shelby County approves Phyllis Aluko as next chief public defender

California:

Longtime public defender Jonathan Fattarsi appointed as court commissioner (San Joaquin)

Washington:

Court revives ex-public defender’s tort suit against employers

Appeals court reinstates case over stalking of public defender

Nebraska:

Deputy defender position extended (York)

Of Interest:

One simple way to hold bad prosecutors accountable

Criminal justice legislation means nothing without follow-through

3/22/19

National:

AU-JPO: New Report: Engaging System Actors in Support of the Right to Counsel

Opinion: The importance of improving our indigent defense system

Democratic Presidential candidates should promise to appoint this kind of judge to the federal courts

Opinion: Poor criminal defendants need better legal counsel to achieve a just society

Oklahoma:

Lawsuit alleges Washington County judges, indigent defense system effective ran debtors’ prison

Judges, state agency sued over alleged ‘unconstitutional’ detention of indigent defendants

Oregon:

Oregon Public Defense Services demands reform to “unconstitutional” model

Louisiana:

New Orleans magistrate judge still rolling over poor defendants’ rights, lawyers charge

Column: New Orleans DA doesn’t confess when show is on the other foot

Utah:

Some kids have been navigating Utah’s court system alone. But lawmakers passed a measure that will provide all youths with a lawyer.

Idaho:

Idaho Supreme Court might weigh in on state public defender class action

Missouri:

Public defender may get partial solution to caseload problem: Wesley Bell

Michigan:

Defendants who cannot afford an attorney getting more help in county (Livingston)

County to vote on indigent defense program contract Tuesday

Public defender may take (polar) plunge (Chippewa County)

Tennessee:

Phyllis Aluko nominated chief public defender, would be first black woman to hold the role

Shelby County chief public defender nominee step closer to appointment

New York:

Legal Aid calls for public defender pay parity with corporate counsel lawyers

Public defenders, prosecutors agree on pay parity, funding increases

Public defenders blast shuffled immigration hearings in NY

Public defender now full time (Fulton County)

New part-time town attorney is a county assistant public defender (Albany County)

Massachusetts:

Hackers shut down Mass. Public defender system for weeks

Georgia:

In this small Georgia City, an unpaid court fine can get your utilities cut off

Funding indigent defense: Spotlight on Georgia and the Tara Grinstead murder trial

Joshua Larkey appointed new circuit public defender for the Waycross judicial circuit
When is a fatal overdose a crime? Georgia Supreme Court weighs charges in heroin case

Delaware:

Lawmakers announce major criminal justice reforms

Wisconsin:

“It’s been getting worse”: Legal organizations request more funding

North Carolina:

Mecklenburg County has a new bail policy. But does it go too far – or not far enough?

Florida:

Race, age overshadowing campaign to replace public defender Howard Finklestein

Arkansas:

Lisa Peters sworn in as federal public defender

California:

SF could name street in honor of late public defender Jeff Adachi

LA County public defender’s office appoints first CIO

Public defenders’ office seeks nominations for 25 most remarkable teens in San Diego

New SF public defender Mano Raju intends to build on Adachi’s legacy

Public defender’s office raises funds for those in need (Yolo County)

Ohio:

Opinion: Make the right to indigent defense counsel a functioning reality in Ohio

County bar association seeks $75-per-hour fee for indigent criminal defense attorneys (Richland County)

County meets with state public defender (Highland County)

North Carolina:

Philip Stroupe trial delayed after judge dismisses public defender

Pennsylvania:

Philly probation violators are finally getting real hearings. Many are being released.

YWCA wins award for making the difference (Montgomery County)

New public defender for Clinton County

Maryland:

In Maryland, justice should work backward and forward

Oklahoma:

Commissioner calls for change after jail audit reveals people mistakenly jailed

Of Interest:

How can anyone defend Harvey Weinstein? Duty.

Supreme Court to consider whether beltway sniper Lee Boyd Malvo deserves new sentence

Sometimes the Supreme Court sticks to the law

US Supreme Court to reconsider split jury verdicts, prompted by New Orleans case

Racial bias in jury selection case prompts rare question from Justice Thomas

3/14/19

National:
Commentary: Why we need to rethink misdemeanor justice

Opinion: I’m a public defender. My clients get none of the sympathy Manafort did.

A public defender explains why Paul Manafort’s sentences is so unfair

Opinion: Paul Manafort did not deserve to die in prison

Mississippi:
Rush to judgment: State’s public defense system poses constitutional crisis

Opinion: Time to address public defense

How Tupelo plans to make public defense more robust

Opinion: Tupelo shows leadership on public defense

Missouri:
Class certification denied in public defender lawsuit

Circuit attorney, public defender work together against pretrial detention

Column: The math adds up, says head public defender in St. Louis – close the Workhouse

Massachusetts:
Cyberattack with ransom demand has disrupted public defenders for weeks

Cyberattack shuts down Committee for Public Counsel Services network, leaving bar advocates unpaid

Cyber attack shuts down part of Massachusetts’ public defender agency

Wisconsin:
Opinion: A fair and speedy trial carries a hefty price tag

New Jersey:
Opinion: Reject high fee for public defender


California:
Gov. Newsom to order halt to California’s death penalty

Manohar Raju selected as SF public defender

SF Mayor Breed’s pick for public defender smooths November campaign

SF’s new public defender, Manojar Raju + Mandatory minimum sentencing and the path to decarceration

San Francisco officials still shocked over sudden death of public defender Jeff Adachi

SF public defender pick praised by LGBTs

Did late SF public defense Jeff Adachi keep plea deals secret from clients?

Illinois:
Fifth public defender in two years appointed for South Jacksonville man

Ohio:
Proposed hike in court-appointed attorney fees could cost county $284,375 annually (Richland)

Erie County public defender argues for more money

Washington:
Public defenders to help some in King County remove ‘scarlet letter’ of criminal conviction from their record

New public defense unit to help people vacate convictions, expunge records

Texas:
Indigent defense work group gets new change to find common ground

Travis County continues efforts to create public defender’s office despite missing deadline

State District Judge Missy Medary to chair Texas Indigent Defense Commission committee

Louisiana:
The TV series derailing bail reform in New Orleans

A Louisiana teen with disabilities needed help.  Why was he accused of trying to kill a cop?

Lafourche chief public defender to step down

Michigan:
Ingham County’s first public defender talks about building the system from the ground up

Branch County looks for public defender

Nebraska:
Commissioners name new county public defender (York)

County board to discuss public defender position

Utah:
Tremonton City appoints new public defender

New York:
Delaware County board votes to add public defender

New York City’s bail success story

Flanagan, GOP try to put brakes on bail, discovery changes

St. Lawrence County legislators outline priorities for state lawmakers

Colorado:
Colorado Supreme Court will consider rules on suppressed Colorado court cases – and how to handle them in the future

Nevada:
In legislative debut, sweeping criminal justice reform bill hits headwinds from prosecutors, police, cities

Of Interest:
The fentanyl failure

The cold case factory

Opinion: Incarcerated people have a lot to teach us about preventing crime and violence.  I listened, and you can, too.

3/8/19

In Memoriam:
Christopher Charles Petaja - Attorneys, judges remember Bozeman attorney who died in fall

Jeff Adachi:
San Francisco says farewell to public defender Jeff Adachi

'A model for America': the criminal justice reformer who inspired a generation

National:
US Supreme Court sides with inmate on appeals case, overturning Idaho’s court ruling (on ineffective assistance)

Thomas and Gorsuch issue dissent that calls into question the right to counsel

Right to counsel fight turns poor defendants into plaintiffs

Vermont:
Bill would expand legal defense services to all crimes

Indiana:
Pending legislation would improve public defender system

Indiana juvenile defense project could end without state funding

Wisconsin:
Governor's budget includes higher wage for lawyers representing poor people

Gov. Tony Evers' proposed public defender raise could save tax dollars in La Crosse County

Local public defender office applauds call by Evers, GOP for better hourly play

Georgia:
Group protests 'pay-or-jail' sentences in Atlanta

New Jersey:
Should courts charge a fee for a public defender?

Bayonne ordinance would quadruple municipal court's public defender fee

Texas:
Editorial: A welcome study of indigent defense here (Bexar County)

Travis could miss out on millions in clash over indigent defense fixes

Travis County's push to establish a public defender office isn't dead - for now

Travis County runs up against tight deadline to create public defender’s office

Why doesn't Texas' most liberal county have a public defender?

New York:
Public defender caseloads remain high

Assistant public defender to become full-time (Fulton County)

Illinois:
McLean County public defender: Tough job, but caseloads within range

North Carolina:
Amid uncertainty and controversy, judge appoints interim Cumberland

Michigan:
Ottawa, Allegan public defender offices progressing

Making a difference on defense (Shiawassee County)

Branch County to get funding for indigent defense

California:
SJ's bail system a leader in US (San Joaquin County)

Rookie public defender must face further arraignment in witness-dissuading case

Arizona:
New Cochise County office will provide more local access to legal services

Wyoming:
Sheridan Commission backs public defender candidate

Kentucky:
Aggravating Louisville defense lawyer will do almost anything to win. And he often does.

Connecticut:
A prison program in Connecticut seeks to find out what happens when prisoners are treated as victims

Mississippi:
Council approves city court public defender spending (Tupelo)

Ohio:
Death penalty lawyers urge delay of all Ohio executions

Massachusetts:
ACLU, public counsel work to notify those affected by drug lab scandal

Nebraska:
Six people were convicted of a murder they didn’t even remember. Now a county owes them $28 million.

Florida:
Federal public defender named to city's independent ethics board

Washington:
Inslee appoints Patricia Fassett to Cowlitz County Superior Court

Of Interest:
A Harvard law school professor defends his decision to represent Harvey Weinstein

Kamala Harris 'grew up' with Jeff Adachi. Then tragedy struck.

Criminal justice reform is not just about race

A new method of DNA testing could solve more shootings

Jasmin Savoy Brown of 'For the People' on the reputation of public defenders

---

February

2/28/19

In Memoriam:

Jeff Adachi, San Francisco public defender and former member of ABA SCLAID:

SF public defender Jeff Adachi dies

SF Mayor, colleagues remember public defender Jeff Adachi

SF district attorney speaks about Jeff Adachi's death

City Hall memorial planned for public defender Jeff Adachi

Hundreds gather for vigil, march to honor late public defender

Felipe Plascencia, former Los Angeles public defender

National

Courthouse 'warrior' or diplomat? The public defender's challenge

The new criminal justice law will modestly shrink prison populations. Should we go further?

Wisconsin:

Plan boosts budget for prosecutors, defenders

Clerk of Courts says reform needed in attorney pay

Utah:

Panel OKs proposal to improve public defense for kids and teens

Full Utah House to vote on bill requiring that children have the option of a public defender at all court proceedings

California:

California's criminal justice system under new scrutiny following investigative study

Adachi leaves 'very big shoes to fill' as public defender-and now it's up to Breed to fill them

Will Matt Gonzales be the new public defender (San Francisco)?

Public defender's chief attorney is interested in taking over office

(Yolo) Public defender's office hosts 'holistic' fundraiser

Solano hires veteran deputy as interim public defender

Hearing begins in case of Contra Costa judge accused of sexual harassment, 'abuse' of authority

SF district attorney to wipe out 9,000-plus pot cases going to back to 1975

New Jersey:

Bayonne poised to quadruple public defender fee: Poor defendants could be at risk

Former deputy public defender sues, claiming discrimination, retaliation

Indiana:

Porter County in minority by not joining state public defender program

Arizona:

Free, weekly legal defense clinics give convicted felons a second chance

South Carolina:

Public defender James Cheek reflects on how sit-in sparked interest in law

Tennessee:

Army reservist is newest public defender

Texas:

How discord imperiled a group's charge to fix indigent defense in Travis County

Judges not ready to endorse public defender plan (Travis)

'Brain drain': UT law grads leave Austin to pursue public defense

Public defender is set to succeed late judge

Michigan:

Making a difference on defense (Shiawassee)

Van Buren public defender's office back on track

Florida:

Biscayne Park police implementing change after former chief convicted for framing minorities

Missouri:

Public defender alleges Missouri judge is ignoring double jeopardy protections

Colorado:

Colorado's prisons are bursting at the seams. Lawmakers are searching for solutions.

Louisiana:

New Orleans bail bondsmen owe refunds to thousands of clients, state insurance commissioner says

Of Interest:

As death toll keeps rising, U.S. communities start rethinking Taser use

Report: Conservative news media and criminal justice: Evidence from exposure to Fox News Channel

I was a juror on a murder trial, and I still can’t let it go

2/21/19

In Memoriam:

Daron Morris, longtime King County public defender, dies at 45

National:

Lessons from defending detainees at Guantanamo Bay

Wisconsin:

GOP lawmakers support pay increase for attorneys taking public defender cases

Assembly Republicans call for $50 million criminal justice package

Vos calls for criminal justice reforms in Evers’ budget proposal

GOP plan aims to address state public defender problems

Editorial: Public defenders and prosecutors deserve a raise

Wisconsin Gov. Evers' budget proposes decriminalizing marijuana, legalizing medical use

Virginia:

Virginia inexplicably killed a bill that could've helped thousands with suspended licenses

Montana:

Local governments push back on state effort to shift costs for public defenders

Panel approves scaled-back draft of Corrections, public-defender budgets

Michigan:

Neighborhood Defender Service establishing office in Wayne County

The new public defender (Ottawa County)

Cost of criminal justice to figure in prominently to county board meeting

Louisiana:

State public defender: Fewer local traffic tickets leads to greater need for state funding

Louisiana routinely jails people weeks, months, years after their release dates

Youth charged as adults have no spot in local jail; attorneys plea for return to juvenile detention

Public defender sues city for records on surveillance camera locations

Idaho:

Public defenders office would have to hire more lawyers under new caseload caps

Idaho public defender workload: Do they really care about your case?

Blaine County to open public defense department

Tennessee:

Workload immense in public defender system

Santana speaks to WSCC students

Pennsylvania:

Public defender's office runs below budget, but critics worry defendants pay the price

Philly DA Larry Krasner stopped seeking bail for low-level crimes. Here's what happened next.

Philly narcotics cops turned suspects into off-the-books confidential informants. Now, defense lawyers want to know more.

Texas:

Travis County remains hopeful about creation of public defender's office, despite setbacks

In search of the best 'yes' for indigent defense

West Virginia:

Hicks appointed to public defender corporation

Mississippi:

City Hall moves to install public defender at municipal court

Tupelo seeks to hire full-time public defender

California:

Beatings, illegal strip searches continue at SF jails, says public defender

Kentucky:

Kentucky jails scrutinized for recording attorney-inmate phone calls

Wyoming:

A longtime Casper public defender retired. But he's not done opposing the prosecution.

Washington:

Public defender prepping for 'Jeopardy!' appearance

Of Interest:

Supreme Court limits police powers to seize private property

Supreme Court strikes blow against states that raise revenues by hefty fines, forfeitures

Special courts for veterans languish

Scrubbing the past to give those with a criminal record a second change

---

2/14/19

In Memoriam:

Jessica Bryar, public defender who worked with families, dies

Indiana:

Public defenders in Indiana say they are bogged down with misdemeanor cases

Editorial: Equal justice—Defense reforms must include financing

Court erred in setting defender fee, skipping indigency hearing

Local attorney to become county's chief public defender

Idaho:

Idaho judge hears arguments in public defense lawsuit

Wisconsin:

How low compensation for public defenders is impacting Wisconsin

Legislature must raise rates for public defenders

Coalition requests funding to improve Wisconsin criminal justice system

Texas:

County's public defender work group loses key participant

2 quit group shaping possible Travis County public defender office

Commissioners Court rejects Ogg pitch for more prosecutors

Cookie Monster goes to court: Dallas County public defenders revamp room for clients' children

Minnesota:

Do overworked and underpaid Minnesota public defenders put justice at risk?

Montana:

Montana office of the public defender expecting larger caseload, asking for budget increase

ABA president urges Montana lawmakers to rethink driver's license suspension in sentencing

Utah:

State funding boosts Juab County's public defender office

New York:

Letter: New York is reforming public defense

Public defenders, advocates make full-throttle push for new 'discovery' law citing dire need in 'worst state' New York

Opinion: How surcharges punish the poor: New York must combat court fees that many low-income residents cannot pay

Early Arrival: Public defenders suing over video hearings

Peter Finnerty confirmed as Chemung County public defender

Alabama:

Group pushing for public defender's office in Mobile County

Nebraska:

Public defense report presented to Gage County board

South Dakota:

Lawrence County public defender's office worked 540 cases in 2018

California:

The Scanner: SF public defender's office uses bold strategy in murder cases

Public defender: San Francisco jail abuse continues after charges dropped

Oregon:

Multnomah County prosecutors violated an Oregon law for decades. Then they got caught.

Missouri:

Paying bail in St. Louis? Better have $45,000 cash, on a weekday

Florida:

Florida's big retail lobby says it will keep fighting to imprison more petty thieves

Cash bail unfair to poor people, ABA President says in interview in Clearwater

Tennessee:

Pretrial justice in Tennessee

Maryland:

Baltimore prosecutor makes 'bold and groundbreaking' decision regarding marijuana arrests

Massachusetts:

The chemists and the coverup

Washington:

King County public defender Ami Nguyen joins the race for City Council in District 3

Of Interest:

Want to shrink the prison population? Look at parole.

Opinion: Science—and the law—says don't try to juveniles as adults

State of phone justice: Local jails, state prisons and private phone providers

Will AI put lawyers out of business?

The case for capping all prison sentences at 20 years

---

2/8/19

National:
This public defender was juggling 195 felony cases at once; 'the workload can be overwhelming'

Opinion: Why conservatives needs to work harder to improve public defense

Public defenders are hugely overworked—but also underpaid compared with prosecutors

Letter: Public defenders, unfunded

Indiana:
State, national groups support Indiana public defense reform

Sullivan courts dealing with shortage of public defenders

New York:
Ulster comptroller: public defender monies untapped

Federal public defenders sue over terrible state of Brooklyn detention center

Lawsuit filed against Brooklyn jail that went with limited power, heat during frigid week

NYPD's 'Operation Lucky Bag' resurfaces in Manhattan, blasted by judge and public defenders for entrapping innocents into an arrest

Clinton County readies public defender's office

County to centralize after-hours arraignments (Otsego County)

Columbia County public defender gets grant to boost salaries

Wisconsin:
Editorial: Raising public defender pay rate will improve justice

Justice at risk? Private attorneys say low rate of pay means they can't afford to take on public defender cases

Louisiana:
With more than 100 cases per lawyer, Lafayette public defense office feels funding squeeze

One Louisiana public defender, 194 felony cases and no time

Column: Court mandates not right way to remedy public defender woes

Baton Rouge public defender's office launches new bail team to keep clients out of jail

Utah:
Overhaul of Utah's public defender system 'a huge benefit' for Juab County

Texas:
Denton County wants state to fund court-appointed attorneys

Letter: Local, not state, causing problems

Missouri:
To fix inequality of cash bail, Missouri court makes new rules for jailing suspects

Connecticut:
Loitering laws hit Connecticut's most vulnerable residents

Ohio:
Rising attorney costs felt by Knox County

Washington:
Sheriff's use of courtroom camera to view juror's notebook, lawyer's notes sparks dismissal of criminal case

Maryland:
Opinion: Bashing judges for sport in Md.

North Carolina:
Cumberland County public defender to step down

Michigan:
Nonprofit Kalamazoo defender signs contract for county public defender

Kalamazoo County to announce new public defender office

Colorado:
Justice Center might get help

California:
Public defender appointment pending (Solano)

New Jersey:
Facebook post comparing Dems to KKK costs public defender his gig

Wyoming:
Natrona County's chief public defender retired abruptly last month in changing of the guard

Carbon County public defender's office filled

Nevada:
Nevada AG names former public defender as legal adviser

Of Interest:
Opinion: The criminal justice system also has an 'alternative facts' problem

Taken: How police departments make millions by seizing property

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2/1/19

National:

One lawyer, one day, 194 felony cases

Louisiana:

Judge advances Louisiana public defense lawsuit, calls funding woes bad excuse for violating rights

Funding concerns still an issue for state public defenders

Funding problems persist for Caddo Parish public defenders

Idaho:

Public defense budget set to double next year

State mandates burden Idaho counties

Oregon:

Report: Public defender represents 1,200 clients in 1 year

Wisconsin:

Opinion: Why conservatives need to work harder to improve public defense

Wisconsin's low compensation rate for public defenders prompts federal lawsuit

Indiana:

Public defender comission seeks funds for misdemeanors, appellate office

Public defenders bill passes in Indiana senate

Pretrial release producing expected results

Minnesota:

Negotiations with the board of public defense are about more than pay

Utah:

Kids in Utah are often left to navigate the court system without an attorney—but a lawmaker wants to change that

Texas:

Group shaping future of county public defenders seeks public input (Travis)

Alabama:

Investigation into JeffCo public defender after claims of 'racially hostile' workplace

New York:

Centralized arraignment plan approved in Steuben

Committee accepts five-year $4M state grant (Fulton)

Public defender Tiffany Caban launches her campaign for Queens district attorney

South Dakota:

County's new public defender deal creates controversy (Davison County)

Michigan:

A huge help for justice: Wexford-Missaukee indigent defense office filling a need in its first year

Ottawa County public defender office operational, close to taking all cases

Illinois:

County officials back legislation to make sure arrestees get their phone calls

New Mexico:

New Mexico considers lighter punishment for drug possession

Nebraska:

County board to start advertising for public defender (York)

Pennsylvania:

Public defender's getting new database (Adams County)

California:

Jeffrey Aaron: Mendo's new public defender

Public defender raises funds for holistic defense

Vermont:

Rutland County has a new public defender

Virginia:

Jim Hingeley, former public defender, running for Albemarle Commonwealth’s Attorney

Tennessee:

A look at chief public defender Martesha Johnson (Nashville)

Rhode Island:

McElroy missing from President Trump's judicial nominees

Of Interest:

When going to jail means giving up the meds that saved your life

January

1/24/19

In Memoriam:

Michael F. Kelly, stalwart North Jersey defense attorney, dies

National:

Next step in criminal justice reform could target jobs for convicts, marijuana law

"The Sixth Amendment doesn’t shut down when the government does"

Oregon:

REPORT: The Right to Counsel in Oregon: Evaluation of Trial Level Public Defense Representation Provided Through the Office of Public Defense Services

Wisconsin:

Defendants sue over state public defender problems

Federal lawsuit: "Indigent defense in Wisconsin has reached a state of crisis."

Poor stay in jail while rich go free: Rethinking cash bail in Wisconsin

Dunkin re-elected vice chair of state board

Indiana:

Public defender commission wants $15M more per year to maintain, improve system

Legislature takes first step toward regional public defender offices

Multi-county public defender bill before Senate committee

Idaho:

Legislators take step toward public defense reform

Legislators take step toward public defense reform; rules approved in both houses ...

Legislative notebook: More bills and public defense rules

Michigan:

Marquette County to receive new public defender office

Counties prepare for new indigent defense standards

Questions linger as county prepares to launch public defenders' office (Isabella County)

County board hits impasse over indigent defense counsel candidates (Barry County)

Montana:

Panel tables bill on public defender fees

Minnesota:

Hennepin County public defender questions police agreement with documentary crew

Texas:

Ross Ramsey: Unfunded mandates have new enemy

Editorial: Bail reform is a mess in Dallas County. It didn’t have to be

Nebraska:

Official vacancy declared for public defender position

Oregon:

Police make arrest in 2009 homicide of assistant federal public defender Nancy Bergeson

Florida:

Employee accused of stealing from public defender's office in Volusia

North Carolina:

Inside politics: Tal Baggett not on list for public defender appointment

New York:

Opinion: Delaware should establish office for public defense

Courthouse cameras violate constitutional rights, public defenders say

Ohio:

Officials say most convictions are a result of plea agreements

New Jersey:

Attorney general begins nationwide search to reform how N.J. tracks police use of force

Illinois:

Cass Board hires public defender

Of Interest:

Want to clear your record? It'll cost you $450.

The FBI says its photo analysis is scientific evidence. Scientists disagree.

---

1/16/19

National:
Can public defenders be reformers?

The failure to appear fallacy

Missouri:
Lawsuit over public defender caseload will go to trial

State and governor can't be sued over public defender caseloads, 8th Circuit says

Court: State, governor can't be sued over public defenders

Court reform advocates question use of pretrial ankle monitoring in St. Louis

Column: New attorney general joins the fight against debtor's prisons in Missouri

Idaho:
Idaho adds caseload limits for public defenders—if the state agrees to fund it…

Senate panel OKs public defense caseload rules

Montana:
Bill would allow state to collect public defender fees from incarcerated people

Bill aim to aid public defender collections

Oregon:
Lawyer who represented Saudi men who fled says she's faced threats, has temporarily closed practice

Ohio:
Office has new public defenders, yet more would be welcome (Ashtabula)

New York:
Budget increases fees to fund indigent legal services

Delaware County looks to add public defender

Tennessee:
Jones takes oath of office as new district public defender

Michigan:
'Compassionate' and 'thorough.' Meet Ingham County's first public defender

County appoints public defender administrator for indigent defense

Patrick Crowley will become Marquette County's new chief public defender

Montcalm County's new public defender still doesn't have an official office

California:
Public defender Chesa Boudin joins district attorney race

California's historic overhaul of cash bail is now on hold, pending a 2020 referendum

PENNSYLVANIA:
Northampton County's public defender announces she'll run for district attorney

Chief public defender Elliot Howsie enters race for judge (Allegheny)

Nebraska:
Official vacancy declared for public defender (York)

Of Interest:
How cities make money by fining the poor

Bad forensic science is putting innocent people in prison

How to pick a good criminal defense attorney


1/10/19

In Memoriam:
Phoebe Hall, VCU rector and Richmond's first female public defender, dies

Rick Parker, former public defender (FL), dies at 71

National:
'Punishment Without Crime' highlights the injustice of America's misdemeanor system

Opinion: Eliminate court fines and fees that penalize poverty

Blog Entry: Politics and Public Defenders

Arkansas:
Faulkner County diverted $350,000 from public defender's office

Faulkner County won't return $350,000 to public defender's office

Louisiana:
Opinion: Indigent defendants are short-changed

Connecticut:
End to federal shutdown elusive, impact will grow in CT (Federal Defenders)

Texas:
Court makes move toward public defender's office

Houston lawyer and ex-CIA officer champions indigent defense in federal court

Judge Missy Medary re-appointed to state governing board (TIDC)

Tennessee:
How Cyntoia Brown's first public defender formed lifetime friendship with her

Haslam names Jones as public defender in 22nd Judicial District

Georgia:
Catoosa County renews public defense agreement, appoints vice chairman

Kentucky:
Louisville defense attorney under investigation for hiding bullet casings in death penalty case

Longtime public defender, Elizabeth Curtin, retires

New Hampshire:
'Laurie's List' Bills: NH Rep says public has right to know if police officers disciplined

North Carolina:
Inside politics: Barrister buzz says former Judge Baggett could be next public defender (Cumberland)

California:
Jeff Adachi sworn in to fifth term as SF public defender

Longtime Santa Cruz public defender enters private practice

San Francisco public defender finds order in the chortle

Alabama:
Former Jeffco public defender to lead ACLU of Alabama

Wyoming:
Letter: Protesting changes with Carbon County public defender's office

Illinois:
County finance committee gets request from public defender (Iroquois)

Florida:
Voting rights restored for some felons in Florida

Letter: Trap for the unwary (voter registration process for felons)

Nevada:
Apparent suicide of Nevada death-row inmate spurs questions

New York:
Interim St. Lawrence County public defender appointed by county legislature

Pennsylvania:
Westmoreland's chief public defender announces judicial candidacy

Nebraska:
County board to talk weeds, public defender, policies (York)

Ohio:
2019 non-general fund budget increases by $3.6 million (Knox County)

Of Interest:
What the government shutdown looks like inside federal prisons


1/03/19

In Memoriam:
Justice Pascal Calogero–Louisiana Supreme Court

National:
Federal courts defer appointed defense attorney payments amid government shutdown

Missouri:
Missouri Justices asked to handle strained public defender system

Panel attorneys ease the burden on Missouri's overworked public defenders

Wesley Bell plans to eliminate cash bail for nonviolent offenders after swearing-in on Jan. 1

Utah:
Utah's much criticized public defense system could get $5 million boost

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert proposes big boost for public defender system

Louisiana:
Opinion: Indigent defendants are short-changed

James "Jay" T. Dixon, Jr.: Public defender office faces financial crisis

Alabama:
How much does your county spend to defend indigents?

Michigan:
Indigent defense rules costly for some Michigan officials

Attorneys who represent indigent defendants in Livingston County getting 25% raise

County approves indigent defense agreement (St. Joseph County)

County Commission signs pact to provide counsel for indigent citizens (Lapeer County)

New Mexico:
Lawsuit claims sexual harassment in public defender's office in Clovis

Lawsuit filed against former deputy chief public defender

Thank you for your service. Now get lost.

Pennsylvania:
Montco public defender wins nearly $225K over age-discrimination claims

Maryland:
Passage of the criminal justice reform bill would affect hundreds of federal drug cases in Maryland

Baltimore police expunged officer's internal affairs files according to public defender's office

In Baltimore, public trust in police force hard to find

New York:
Columbia County will seek four nighttime attorneys to provide after-hours arraignment services

New state rules had big impact for Washington County public defense

Ohio:
Kasich signs bill expanding who can seek compensation for wrongful imprisonment

Illinois:
The ticket trap: Where Chicago issues parking tickets and who pays for them

Show them the money: Departments talk where they can (and can't) cut

Arkansas:
JP's vote against own raise, in favor of paying needed role

Florida:
More than five years after his scandals, Matt Shirk still hasn't faced any discipline

Georgia:
New pretial initiative approved by commissioners (DeKalb)

Colorado:
Lack of interpreters a problem for local defense attorney

Virginia:
New crop of reform-minded prosecutors ready to take office

Upstart candidates for prosecutor hope to bring reform wave to Northern Virginia

California:
With California's cash bail system in limbo, Compton pilot program serves as a 'petri dish'

Opinion: S.F. owes the thousands who paid criminal justice fees a refund

Meet the lawyers fighting the federal government to save their clients from deportation

Nebraska:
County board determines public defender not qualified to take oath of office

South Carolina:
How millions spent on criminal justice reform in Charleston is paying off

Indiana:
Public defender Bohdan named Allen Superior Court magistrate

South Dakota:
Your question answered: Where your fine for speeding goes

Wisconsin:
Milwaukee County judge who held lawyer in contempt is reassigned

Of Interest:
Defending a court's discretion to allow arguments for conscientious acquittal

How a dubious forensic science spread like a virus

More than 41,000 public service workers sought federal student loan forgiveness. 106 got approved.