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An Article About Public Defenders

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Alexa Van Brunt, an attorney with the Roderick and Solange MacArthur Justice Center at Northwestern Law School, wrote an article about public defenders. In it she describes why those who cannot afford good lawyers are being misrepresented by public defenders. The main idea she wants to drive home is that public defenders are underfunded and extremely overworked by excessive caseloads. Hence, they are providing a weaker defense for their clients. The US Department of Justice indicates that in 2007 and about “73% of county public defender offices exceed the maximum limit of cases” (Brunt, 2015, para. 2). Public defenders are so overwhelmed by cases that in some instances they can spend less than an hour per case (Brunt, 2015, para. 3).…show more content…
The justice system is designed in a way that the prosecutor and defense both present their case to best of their capabilities. If people believe that they had the opportunity to present their side of the story, then they tend to feel more positive about the justice system as a whole. However, if one side is lacking resources to afford good representation, then the court appoints an attorney, usually a public defender. This defender ends up misrepresenting the defendant because of the lack of resources to investigate each case properly and time to spear per case. Looking at the first choice which talks about the rights of the individual versus the common good we conclude that United States operate under the Crime Control Model which advocates for swift prosecution of defendant in attempts to stop criminal activities from reoccurring. However, if one is clearly misrepresented, then justice cannot be served. In many cases individuals and their families lose faith in the justice system because they see how insufficient it is. Such disbelief might correlate with increased recidivism rates and national crime rates in general. The third point talks about the choice whether to discover the truth or to resolve conflict. Here we touch upon justice and representation as a whole, however, there cannot be justice for all if certain groups of individuals are
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