One of the main purposes of our judicial system is to produce fair results. This way the defendant is not convicted for something that they did not do. Although this is supposed to be the case, our society is set up in a way where the rich people have more of an advantage when it comes down to being provided with a lawyer than the poor. In the case of Gideon v. Wainwright, in 1963, the Supreme Court decided that to ensure fair trial, a counsel must be provided for the defendants that cannot afford one. Although the Sixth Amendment only says that someone has the right to a counsel, the purpose for a lawyer is to protect the innocent. This cannot happen if the lawyer does a poor job defending their client. This is why the Supreme Court should set a new precedent stating that everyone is entitled to a high quality defense. A high quality defense would look like someone who presents good arguments that helps back up a side. They are well prepared and knowledgeable about the case. Furthermore, they are well rounded people with good interpretation and speaking skills. Most importantly though, they are good listeners, patient, logical, observance, and open minded about the issue. With that, they have to be able to know how to deal with the issue and come up with alternatives.
The Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution states: “In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right… to have the assistance of counsel for his defense” (U.S. Const. amend. VI). The history of the modern right to counsel dates back to over a century ago in the Indiana Supreme Court case of Webb v. Baird, 6 In. 13 (1853), in which the right to counsel for a person accused of a crime was officially recognized (Koplow, 2007). However, it was not a decision based on constitutional or statutory law, but a decision warranted under “the principles of a civilized society” (Koplow, 2007). Since the case of Webb v. Baird, the right to counsel has immensely extended beyond just appointing an indigent person an attorney.
Public defenders have a tough job defending their indigent clients. In an ideal scenario, they are to defend their clients in a zealous manner. Unfortunately for the clients, most cases end via plea bargains . For cases that do make it to court, some clients find their attorney lacking in many respects . This is because the Supreme Court case Gideon v Wainwright only guarantees the right to an attorney. Unfortunately, that right does not extend to a quality lawyer or defense . I intern at the Orange County Public Defender’s office, where the clients are poor and homeless. As such, they cannot hire their own lawyers and must rely on free legal representation from the office’s attorneys. But just like other Public Defenders across the U.S.,
Subsequently, in 1972 Argersinger v. Hamlin held that defendants were required legal counsel when faced with incarceration from a misdemeanor or felony conviction (Smith, 2004). Following these Supreme Court decisions, most state and local governments had to develop new systems of indigent defense or modify the old ones to keep up with the number of clients (Wice, 2005). Since Gideon v. Wainwright, other cases have challenged the Supreme Court application of the right to counsel. Currently, all defendants are given the right to counsel at all stages of the criminal justice process, including during trial, appeals, and even during police interrogation.
This proving the unfairness of this precedent. Take a second and just imagine some of the largest cases of the last century -- civil and criminal -- , and envision how they would have went without the defendant/respondent having a lawyer. I ask you to ponder if O.J. Simpson would have been acquitted of double homicide if it was not for Johnnie Cochran. Or Casey Anthony if it was not for Jose Baez. George Zimmerman? Al Capone? William S. Burroughs? The amount of cases literally transformed by the presence and work of
(2) Yes because people have the right to an attorney and if they can not afford one one is provided for them. Public defenders chose their job. Not only that but good ones put time and effort into what they do. The job requires skill. Also public defenders are often overworked and underpaid.
The defense attorney represents the defendant, the person accused of committing a crime or a wrongful act. Criminal defendants who are unable to come up with the money for to hire a lawyer are allowed to have the judge appoint them a lawyer who is then paid with public funds.
As with any legal matter, having access to legal counsel is always advantageous, however, not all cases require the assistance of an attorney and the fees associated with their often very brief representation as in misdemeanor cases which would not result in the restriction of their freedom. Zalman identifies several reasons for a pro se defense, among them, the “perceived incompetence of assigned counsel or defendant sharply disagrees with counsel’s legal strategy” (2011). While the Sixth Amendment establishes an individual’s right to self-representation, as decided in Faretta v. California, I do not believe that self-representation is an option to consider in charges for matters outside of traffic court in most cases.
This being said, beyond performing his/her role of counselor or advisor, a defense attorney is an advocate for his client. The latter ought to protect his client interest.
Trial attorneys with genuine experience are better equipped to cross examine a witness, present an oral argument or file a motion to suppress evidence. In addition, they feel confident speaking in front of a jury, offering arguments to persuade this group of peers to their side, and can easily identify strengths and weaknesses in a person's case. This allows the lawyer to offer advice about whether or not to proceed with the case or take a plea bargain.
The right to an attorney creates a leeway for perpetrators. In New York for example, the
The Sixth Amendment is an extended version of the Miranda Rights and goes into depth about the court process. It states: “In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense” (“Sixth Amendment”). This Amendment pinpoints the public defender position and also grants the convict certain rights specific to law. Along with the sixth amendment, the Miranda Rights also play a role in the position of a public defender. The Miranda Rights state: “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you. Do you understand the rights I have just read to you? With these rights in mind, do you wish to speak to me?” (“What Are Your Miranda Rights?”). The Miranda Rights contain a portion of both the fifth and sixth amendments, and also pinpoints the public defender
On January 2010, The Supreme Court backed the right of corporations such as Walmart, Target, and KMart to spend their money on political campaigns. The Supreme Court's Ruling was that this action is supported by the corporations first amendment rights. This decision superseded prior understanding of the subject.
I chose this topic for this week’s forum: Supreme court of the United States Randy White, Warden v. Roger L. Wheeler on petition for Writ off Certiorari to the United States Court of appeals for the sixth circuit, , No. 14–1372. Decided December 14, 2015
In our criminal justice system, the defendant is entitled to be represented by a defense attorney, a person charged with a crime can be represented by a private counsel or, if the defendant doesn’t have the funds for a private defense attorney, the Public Defender’s office will then provide legal assistance to the defendant. Other options for the less fortunate defendants are to be represented by a private attorney appointed by the judge, at the government’s expense. The defense attorney is required to represent his/her client within the limits of the law, this means that the defense attorney must do anything possible to get rid of any reasonable doubt on the prosecution’s case and gain the best possible result for their client to either prove their client’s innocence or lessen the charge against them, (Silver, S.