Hello Harvard...

Sorry for the lack of posts--I've been up giving a little talk at Harvard Law School.

Be back soon. Meanwhile, consider this:

One of the architects of the new indigent defense system in New Orleans faces a contempt hearing -- and possibly jail time -- after Criminal District Judge Frank Marullo on Wednesday ruled Steve Singer did not comply with his order to swiftly appoint lawyers to three defendants facing death penalty charges.

Marullo had called Singer into his courtroom Wednesday morning to explain who would take over the three capital cases on his docket, which include a first-degree murder charge and two cases of aggravated rape of a child younger than 12.

The previously appointed lawyers for all three defendants recently quit the Orleans Parish Indigent Defender Program after its newly appointed board decided to no longer allow its lawyers to have private practices on the side. The new policy requires all public defenders in New Orleans to be full-time staff attorneys.

Tough going down there....

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