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June 15, 2022

"Evaluating the cumulative impact of indigent defense attorneys on criminal justice outcomes"

The title of this post is the title of this new article recently published in the Journal of Criminal Justice.  The piece is authored are Madhuri Sharma, Lisa Stolzenberg and Stewart J. D'Alessio, and here is its abstract:

This study utilizes meta-analysis to synthesize estimates of the impact of public defenders and assigned counsel on the severity of imposed legal sanction at several decision points encountered by criminal defendants as they progress through the criminal justice system.  While public defenders and assigned counsel have some notable effects on specific court outcomes such as pretrial detention and sentencing, the meta-analysis results show that they are just as successful overall as private attorneys in representing their clients' interests.  The defendant's indigent status most likely explains why the clients of public defenders and assigned counsel may sometimes confront more severe sanctioning because the effects of pretrial confinement reverberate throughout the entire criminal justice system.  The frequently observed deleterious consequences associated with pretrial confinement have engendered repeated calls to eliminate cash bail in determining pretrial release.

June 15, 2022 at 12:59 PM | Permalink


What about the most important decision point of all: Guilty or not guilty? Perhaps the article does address that, but I'm not willing to spend $31.50 to find out.

Posted by: Keith Lynch | Jun 15, 2022 6:08:20 PM

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