Department Of Assigned Counsel

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It’s about overly aggressive law enforcement, a supine judiciary and almost comically ineffective representation, and how all of these things put a man on death row who nearly everyone now agrees is innocent — even the man who prosecuted him now doubts his guilt. And it’s about the murder of a much-liked deputy that, because of all of this, remains unsolved.

Getting pulled over by a police officer can be unsettling for anyone.

There shall be an Advisory Board on Indigent Representation consisting of 13 members appointed by majority vote of the Tompkins County Legislature for staggered three-year terms.

The members of the Board should represent a diversity of membership in order to ensure insulation from partisan politics; to represent the attorneys participating in the programs; to represent the client community; and shall, to the extent possible, contain representatives of the client community and organizations concerned with the problems of the client community.

Virginia Code §§ 19.2-163.01 and 19.2-163.8 require the Virginia Indigent Defense Commission, and for capital defense counsel, the Supreme Court of Virginia, to compile and maintain a list of attorneys qualified to represent accused persons who are in need of criminal indigent defense services.“[I]n our adversary system of criminal justice, any person haled into court, who is too poor to hire a lawyer, cannot be assured a fair trial unless counsel is provided for him.

335, 344 (1963).“[I]n our adversary system of criminal justice, any person haled into court, who is too poor to hire a lawyer, cannot be assured a fair trial unless counsel is provided for him.

Each assigned case is monitored to ensure that every recipient of Plan services is fairly and appropriately represented and that appeals are timely and expeditiously perfected, objectives that are considered essential to the Plan’s success.

As part of its commitment to the above, the Plan’s administrative staff is always available to attorney participants to assist in responding to specific questions or problems.

The Supervising Attorney and the staff of the Tompkins County Assigned Counsel Program and all attorneys participating in the program shall at all times be free from direct and indirect partisan or other political pressure and influence in exercising their best professional judgment and responsibilities in providing services to qualified indigent persons.

It shall at all times be the responsibility of the attorneys participating in the program to act in the best interests of the persons for whom they are rendering services.

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