Blog Archives

A Cronic resolve to America’s chronic right to counsel deficiencies

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Pleading the Sixth:On September 28, 2016, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that indigent defendants have a right to challenge systemic deficiencies at the outset of a case before having to suffer from actual or constructive denial of counsel. [Click here

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Pennsylvania Supreme Court recognizes indigent defendants’ right to sue before receiving ineffective representation

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Pleading the Sixth: On September 28, 2016, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that indigent defendants have the right to challenge systemic deficiencies at the outset of a case before having to suffer from actual or constructive denial of counsel. Moreover, the

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Missouri Governor shows why indigent defense crisis will not be fixed without defender independence

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Pleading the Sixth: When the Missouri Public Defender, Michael Barrett, appointed the Governor to represent an accused indigent defendant, it brought national attention to the state’s longstanding underfunding of right to counsel services. Now, after a local judge ruled Barrett

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An Open Letter to the Next Missouri Governor

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Pleading the Sixth: On August 2, 2016 the Missouri State Public Defender appointed the Governor to represent an indigent defendant. Whereas, the sitting Governor is term-limited out, the 6AC turns to the two major party nominees with an overview of

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State of New York to provide full state funding of 6th Amendment right to counsel

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Pleading the Sixth: On June 17, 2016, the New York Assembly passed a bill requiring full state funding of indigent defense services, after the Senate passed the measure the previous night. Will Governor Cuomo sign it into law?

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SCOTUS decision exposes unequal justice for Native Americans

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Pleading the Sixth: On June 13, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court held that prior uncounselled tribal court convictions resulting in jail time can be used to enhance penalties on subsequent offenses in federal courts. Wait! Isn’t that the exact opposite conclusion the Court

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The Sixth Amendment Center's blog, "Pleading the Sixth," charts the successes and failures in our nation’s ongoing efforts to provide a meaningful right to counsel. By providing historical, legal, and standards-based context for local and national news stories, our goal is to provide our readers with the most useful and current information possible -- placing critical tools into the hands of those with the power to enact positive change.

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