Public Defenders

624 ABA Journal Public Defenders articles.

Afternoon Briefs: Election lawyer referred for court discipline; public defender waiting list declared unconstitutional

Lawyer refers election lawyer for discipline

U.S. District Judge James Boasberg of the District of Columbia has referred a Minneapolis lawyer to a court grievance committee for possible discipline after…

Lawyer who fled US pleads guilty after he’s accused of repeatedly billing state for over 24 hours per day
A suspended West Virginia lawyer who fled the country has pleaded guilty to a felony charge after being accused of overbilling for criminal defense work.
Public defender with Patreon for FOIA lawsuits shares her thoughts on lawyers and social media

Lawyer Beth Bourdon is willing to go places where other attorneys may be hesitant, including this summer when she joined Parler—to see how long she could post potentially offensive materials without getting kicked off the conservative social media site.

Former public defender agrees to suspension, partly for firing 3 women after confrontation with his wife
The former public defender in Jacksonville, Florida, has agreed to accept a six-month suspension, partly for firing three women when confronted by his wife.
Meet 14 ABA members who inspired us in 2020

Throughout the year, the ABA Journal profiles exceptional ABA members in its Members Who Inspire series. In 2020, we featured attorneys from across the country whose important and influential work includes using visual storytelling for legal advocacy, bringing attention to the crisis of missing and murdered indigenous women, and combating racial injustice and inequity.

Meet a new chief public defender in Texas working to end criminal justice disparities

As a public defender in the Bronx, New York, for almost a decade, Adeola Ogunkeyede saw firsthand how patterns of institutional racism and systemic inequality impacted her clients even before they entered the criminal justice system. This spring, she moved to the Lone Star State to establish the first-ever public defender’s office serving Travis County, which includes Austin, the state capital. Travis County had been the largest jurisdiction in the country without a PD’s office.

Afternoon Briefs: Lawyer says he was stopped for jogging while Black; public defender held in contempt

Lawyer says he was racially profiled while jogging

A Black lawyer says he was racially profiled during a late-night jog in his new gated community in Parkland, Florida. Lawyer Josiah…

ABA Criminal Justice Section reflects on its first 100 years

As April Frazier Camara celebrates the 100th anniversary of the ABA’s Criminal Justice Section, she also looks forward to facing the many challenges she sees in the criminal legal system. “Racial injustice is something that is on the minds and hearts of American people,” says Camara, the chair of the section.

Lawyers with criminal backgrounds and disciplinary records represent poor defendants in Maine
The Maine agency responsible for hiring lawyers for poor defendants has repeatedly hired lawyers and staff members with criminal backgrounds and disciplinary issues, according to an investigative report.
SCLAID celebrates centennial by recognizing 2 young lawyers’ work to promote access to justice

The ABA Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defense is celebrating its 100th anniversary by also celebrating the contributions two young lawyers have made to advance access to justice in their communities.

Former inmate’s suit says appointed lawyer was ineffective and unlicensed in this state
A former Washington inmate claims in a lawsuit that he pleaded guilty to two felony charges after getting bad advice from an appointed lawyer who wasn’t licensed in the state.
Judge refuses to wear face mask and has ordered lawyers to remove theirs, public defender group says
A Philadelphia family court judge has refused to wear a face mask during in-person court hearings amid the COVID-19 pandemic and has sometimes ordered lawyers to remove their face masks, according to a letter by a public defender group.
Afternoon Briefs: TRO to stop court reopening is denied; third federal inmate is executed

Judge rejects TRO in suit to stop court reopening

U.S. District Judge Andrew Carter Jr. refused to issue on Friday a temporary restraining order preventing in-court appearances in nonemergency criminal…

At least 837 attorney-client calls were recorded by Maine jails
At least 837 attorney-client calls were recorded by Maine jails in the last year in a “massive breach of attorney-client privilege,” according to an investigative report.
New York City public defenders file suit to halt in-person court appearances
Six public defender groups in New York City filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday seeking to halt resumption of in-person court appearances for nonemergency criminal matters in New York City.

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