CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

"In L.A. County, a juvenile suspect assigned an attorney for a flat fee is likely to fare much worse than one who gets a public defender"

This op-ed is from the L.A. Times:

Three hundred fifty dollars. That's the amount Los Angeles County pays a private attorney to represent a child charged with crimes when the public defender has a conflict of interest and can't handle the case. That $350 has to cover all legal work, even when the child is charged with a serious crime such as murder or rape. About 11,000 kids a year end up being represented by such appointed counsel.

. . .

Public defenders are hired through a highly selective national recruiting process. They are trained by senior attorneys and work in an office that rewards zealous advocacy with promotions and raises.

The county requires no vetting of appointed attorneys, nor does it have requirements for special training or experience.

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