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October 5, 2022

"Expanded Criminal Defense Lawyering"

The title of this post is the title of this new article recently posted online and due to be published in the January 2023 issues of the Annual Review of Criminology. The article is authored by Ronald Wright and Jenny Roberts, and here is its abstract:

This review collects and critiques the academic literature on criminal defense lawyering, with an emphasis on empirical work.  Research on criminal defense attorneys in the United States has traditionally emphasized scarcity of resources: too many people facing criminal charges who are “too poor to pay” for counsel and not enough funding to pay for the constitutionally mandated lawyers.  Scholars have focused on the capacity of different delivery systems, such as public defender offices, to change the ultimate outcomes in criminal cases within their tight budgetary constraints.  Over the decades, however, theoretical understandings of the defense attorney's work have expanded to include client interests outside the criminal courtroom, reaching the broader social conditions connected to the alleged criminal act.  Researchers have responded by asking a broader range of questions about the effectiveness of defense counsel outside the courtroom and by using improved data to study the effectiveness of lawyers at discrete procedural stages.

October 5, 2022 at 10:37 AM | Permalink


I'm all for increasing the compensation of defense lawyers (and prosecutors). One of the things I always worried about when I was an AUSA was the so-called walking IAC claim. Mostly, these claims were baloney, like the rest of defendants' claims, but there were enough plausible ones to persuade me that we need to bring more talented people into defense work.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Oct 5, 2022 11:47:22 AM

A free copy is available here:

Posted by: Donald G Rehkopf, Jr. | Oct 5, 2022 2:32:12 PM

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