Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The right to an attorney

In an interesting law suit in New York, the Public Defender program is being challenged as inadequate and failing to meet the requirements under Gideon v Wainright.

All of this begs the question, if you have the right to a public defender, do you also have the right to all the services that are available to the state? Services such as crime labs, latent print analysts, video analysts, and the like? If the courts are forced to appoint counsel, will the also be forced to appoint forensic practitioners?

"... You have the right to the services of forensic experts. If you can not afford these experts, they shall be appointed for you at no cost to you. Do you understand these rights as I have read them to you? ..."

Needless to say, we'll be watching this case closely.


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