Category: Pleading the Sixth

New report finds State of Michigan must take responsibility for deficient felony assigned counsel services in Wayne County (Detroit)

Pleading the Sixth: Forcing trial court judges to design and directly oversee the system that provides attorneys to represent indigent defendants always opens the door to the dangers of undue judicial interference with the right to counsel. This is the case

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Nevada creates and empowers a statewide indigent defense commission

Pleading the Sixth: After decades of public defense studies, legislative and supreme court right to counsel commissions, and numerous attempts at statutory indigent defense reform, the Nevada legislature has created a state commission to promulgate and enforce uniform standards statewide

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A lack of effectiveness and financial oversight define Maine’s right to counsel system

Maine state outline map

Pleading the Sixth: Maine is the only state in the country that provides all indigent defense services through private attorneys. There are two principal reasons that other states have moved away from using solely private attorneys. First, it is difficult to

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Assembly line pretrial representation in Delaware results in denial of right to counsel

In a decision that sounds a warning bell for public defense systems throughout the country, the Delaware Supreme Court has held that “[t]he Sixth Amendment requires more than the physical presence of counsel the first day of trial in a serious

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Oregon’s complex bureaucracy obscures just another fixed fee system

Pleading the Sixth: Oregon stands as a cautionary tale regarding indigent defense reform. Often extolled (including by this author) as a working model that provides effective public defense services through a statewide system of contracts, a new comprehensive evaluation by

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Indiana Task Force on Public Defense urges comprehensive reform

Pleading the Sixth: In October 2016, the 6AC released its evaluation of trial level right to counsel services in Indiana, detailing how and why the Indiana public defense system results in the actual and constructive denial of counsel to the indigent

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