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  #1  
Old 03-03-2011, 12:51 PM
concernedgf concernedgf is offline
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Default How to get another Public Defender when you already have one?

Here's the Scenario: My BF has been incarcerated for a little over a yr and a has yet to be sentenced, Me or him has not been pleased with his court appointed attorney & wanna know how can we got about getting him a new Pub Defender if at all?? Also if we can, how long would that process take & would the new lawyer have to start things over from the beginning??? I'm desperate for answers, so all feedback is truly welcomed......Thanks!
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Old 03-03-2011, 12:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by concernedgf View Post
Here's the Scenario: My BF has been incarcerated for a little over a yr and a has yet to be sentenced, Me or him has not been pleased with his court appointed attorney & wanna know how can we got about getting him a new Pub Defender if at all?? Also if we can, how long would that process take & would the new lawyer have to start things over from the beginning??? I'm desperate for answers, so all feedback is truly welcomed......Thanks!
If you go the route of seeking new counsel the new PD will need time to review the case - he has been in over a year and still hasn't been sentenced? I am assuming there have been several continuances as well as motions mostly likely that have dragged his case on....

When you say "not pleased" what exactly do you mean? Please elaborate.....this might help me as well as others to give you accurate input....

Also your ticker states "xxxx since sentencing day" has he been sentenced? I am thinking "no" based on your question...
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Old 03-03-2011, 01:08 PM
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He' ll need to file a motion via a letter to the courts, Google Motion to dismiss attorney Ineffective assistance of council

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Old 03-03-2011, 01:08 PM
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If you go the route of seeking new counsel the new PD will need time to review the case - he has been in over a year and still hasn't been sentenced? I am assuming there have been several continuances as well as motions mostly likely that have dragged his case on....

When you say "not pleased" what exactly do you mean? Please elaborate.....this might help me as well as others to give you accurate input....

Also your ticker states "xxxx since sentencing day" has he been sentenced? I am thinking "no" based on your question...

Thanks for such a quick response, Ok so first things first, your right that ticker is old 7 wrong, I just don't know how to take it down , When I say not pleased, Here a few things, he's been locked up for over a yr & the lawyer only saw him twice to talk to him......... there has been 4 postponements, & every time me or him talk to the lawyer we are told something completely different . Those are some things just to name a few!!
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:30 PM
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Thanks for such a quick response, Ok so first things first, your right that ticker is old 7 wrong, I just don't know how to take it down , When I say not pleased, Here a few things, he's been locked up for over a yr & the lawyer only saw him twice to talk to him......... there has been 4 postponements, & every time me or him talk to the lawyer we are told something completely different . Those are some things just to name a few!!
Well I understand the frustration but the postponements could be on 'both sides' meaning the PD and the Prosecutor - I know it's frustrating and honestly I think 1yr is long....has he not even been offered a plea? You didn't really going into detail about the crime and PLEASE DON'T public forum - but it may depend on the crime, the evidence they are looking at, witnesses (if any), etc - alot comes into factor - I am assuming he is going to trail for his crime?

Unfortuantely PD's are over loaded as it is and their case loads are HEAVY. If you can afford an attorney I would go that route and hire one for your man and that way you might have better communication with all involved - there are pro's and con's to hired attorney's - opinions - I am of the opinion of hiring a paid attorney - some will disagree and some will agree - it is really up to the two of you and if you feel a paid attorney can get the ball rolling faster for you....

If you do file a motion to remove counsel for "ineffective assistance of counsel" this could inevitably prolong his fate even longer......
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Old 03-03-2011, 04:26 PM
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My man did it, but I'm not sure how. He got a woman public defender this time and she is WONDERFUL!! I am so thankful because she seems to actually CARE!!
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Old 03-04-2011, 04:43 AM
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A Marsden motion gets its name from the case of People v. Marsden (1970) 2 Cal.3d 118. It is a request to the court by a criminal defendant to discharge their lawyer on the basis of being incompetently or inadequately represented by counsel.
A defendant seeking to discharge his appointed counsel and substitute another attorney must establish either 1) that appointed counsel is not providing adequate representation, or 2) that he and counsel have become embroiled in such an irreconcilable conflict that ineffective representation is likely to result. People v. Barnett (1998) 17 Cal.4th 1044, 1085; People v. Mayfield (1997) 14 Cal.4th 668, 795.) Denials of Marsden motions are reviewed under an abuse of discretion standard.
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Old 03-04-2011, 09:46 AM
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There is no indictation from what posted that the lawyer is ineffective. You don't like the time -well court moves at its own pace, not yours. A PD is not going to visit often or even at all, so if he's seen her out of court thats pretty good. If its just you don't like her, then you may have to hire an attorney and then you get someone you "like". Thats not enough to get a new PD appointed. It's not about who you like and noone controls how the court moves. I am involved with a case thats been going on since 2003-and its still in court-probably one of the oldest ones the judge has on his calander.
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Old 03-04-2011, 02:26 PM
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There is no indictation from what posted that the lawyer is ineffective. You don't like the time -well court moves at its own pace, not yours. A PD is not going to visit often or even at all, so if he's seen her out of court thats pretty good. If its just you don't like her, then you may have to hire an attorney and then you get someone you "like". Thats not enough to get a new PD appointed. It's not about who you like and noone controls how the court moves. I am involved with a case thats been going on since 2003-and its still in court-probably one of the oldest ones the judge has on his calander.
A Marsden motion brings the issues to the attention of the COURT this provides PD an opportunity to appease his client, (Lights a fire under his @ss) and the COURT an opportunity to review on the record the actions of the PD. At the least, opens the door for appealable issues in the areas of IAC and COURT ERROR.
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Old 03-04-2011, 03:11 PM
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you bring up both reasons, but don't put all your eggs in the, "my attorney isn't doing enough" basket. Instead, stress the conflict that's developed between you. When you assert that there's no way you can work with that PD, you don't trust him/her, can't talk with him/her and that interferes with your ability to aid your PD in preparing an adequate defense, the court will usually sit up and take notice.

Don't say he's only visited me twice and as a result, I don't think he's doing anything for me. If you want out, come up with a real reason; I don't trust him and can't work with him because he _____. It can't be an issue of attorney discretion. It has to be an issue of importance. I can't work with him because he's (insert race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, age, whatever). I can't work with him because he so resembles the father who beat me that I become overwhelmed with memories. I can't work with him because he believes in abortion, and I just can't involve myself with such people because of my religious beliefs.

Please note, you're rolling the dice when you do this. You may wind up with a PD or appointed counsel who's a lot worse. Further, if you're close to trial/sentencing date, it's not going to happen barring something major (PD has a stroke or something). And, it's going to be harder and harder to substitute counsel should you feel you need to do it again.

It will delay things a bit as the new attorney must first accept the appointment, enter his/her appearance, and then obtain the file from the PD and get caught up on a year's worth of work.

Worst comes to worst, you can always go to your next court date and, when the case is called, point at your PD and say, "I refuse to work with this person, or do anything when s/he's here." That's always a fun court. But, you might wind up getting a psych eval, depending on how enthusiastic your refusal is.
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Old 03-04-2011, 03:34 PM
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Get it on the record, everything goes on the record.
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Old 03-06-2011, 01:49 AM
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I would say that in about 30% of cases that do not plead out, where there is a public defender, the defendant files a motion for a new attorney. These motions are denied 99% of the time.

There have been a lot of threads on this issue in the last year, some of them getting quite interesting feedback from all sides. Do you feel comfortable being more specific about why you and your boyfriend want a new attorney? Other than he only came to see him twice and there were four postponements? (Both of those are NOT grounds to dismiss the attorneys. Clients never feel that the attorney comes to see them often enough, and most of the time what the attorney is doing can best be done without going to see the client, especially in the case of a public defender. Postponements always happen, and defense counsel has very little control; a public defender has a hectic schedule, full of conflicting court appearances.)

If there are any other reasons, other than just those two reasons, then we can help you better frame your issues for the motion so that you will have a better chance of having the motion granted. Also, if I knew more, I could explain to you why you maybe have a mis perception about whether the attorney is doing a bad or good job. For example, can you tell me what your boyfriend thinks the attorney should have been doing that the attorney has not been doing? And how coming to see him more often would have helped?

One final note: I believe that my colleagues at the criminal defense bar could do a better job of communicating with their frightened, overwhelmed and incarcerated clients -- even the over worked public defenders.
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