The Right to Counsel in Indiana: Evaluation of Trial Level Indigent Defense Services

Indiana ReportAs part of its public defense reform program, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) commissioned the Sixth Amendment Center to conduct an independent study of the state of public defense in Indiana and to produce this report -- The Right to Counsel in Indiana: Evaluation of Trial level Indigent Defense Services. 

This report and recommendations were prepared primarily to aid in the work of the Indiana Indigent Defense Study Advisory Committee (IDSAC), which is composed of representatives from the Indiana Supreme Court, Legislature, State Bar Association, Public Defender Commission, Public Defender Council, Prosecuting Attorneys Council, Judges Association, and the Indiana Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

In Indiana, counties are responsible in the first instance to fund and administer public defense services. This report reveals numerous findings of concern, including that Indiana has no mechanism to ensure that its constitutional obligation to provide effective counsel to the poor is met in a wide variety of contexts. The reports explores public defense in Indiana in great detail and offers several important recommendations to address its deficiencies.

Read the Report (PDF) | Read the Executive Summary (PDF) 

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