Wednesday

When Indigent Defense Depends on Traffic Tickets

So what happens when there's just no public defender money? According to a LA court, cases can be indefinitely suspended until there's money available. Nice. Especially since for some years defendants in some parishes were spending nine months in jail BEFORE even meeting their lawyers.

4 comments:

Gideon said...

Oh, I just saw this - traffic tickets? Wow, that's an all time low.

All the cases should just be dismissed. That's ridiculous. Wouldn't it be better to just move to a PD system instead of court appointed lawyers? Mandated by statute to have the same funding as prosecutors.

Indefensible said...

Absolutely.
And the recent moves by the court will make that a bit more unlikely, though things are pretty certain to stay awful in LA for some time to come.

LA PD said...

Worst of all, Louisiana Politics keeps blocking change.

Now the Task Force study suggested April 13 that a new way of selecting members to the State Defender Board. After two years of study, no budget, no request for money, no standards of practice.

Public Defenders wanted standards of practice modeled after Georgia, where they have improved things some.

But Louisiana - its always the who, not the what. Wish us luck.

Indefensible said...

I do
I do...

Tough place to practice--you have my enduring sympathy.