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public defender

public defender, governmental official who represents indigent persons accused of crime. U.S. Supreme Court decisions expanding the right to counsel to pretrial proceedings and holding that a person cannot be sentenced to even one day in jail unless a lawyer was provided have created a need for more lawyers to represent the indigent. Proponents of the public defender office claim that it is the most efficient and effective method of protecting the indigent. Other systems include court-appointed counsel from the local bar, clinics operated by law schools, and legal aid societies. The societies are privately funded and offer civil and criminal representation.

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"public defender." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 19 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"public defender." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/public-defender

"public defender." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/public-defender

public defender

pub·lic de·fend·er • n. Law a lawyer employed at public expense in a criminal trial to represent a defendant who is unable to afford legal assistance.

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"public defender." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 19 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"public defender." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/public-defender

"public defender." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/public-defender

Public Defender

PUBLIC DEFENDER

An attorney appointed by a court or employed by the government to represent indigent defendants in criminal actions.

cross-references

Right to Counsel.

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"Public Defender." West's Encyclopedia of American Law. . Encyclopedia.com. 19 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Public Defender." West's Encyclopedia of American Law. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/law/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/public-defender

"Public Defender." West's Encyclopedia of American Law. . Retrieved August 19, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/law/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/public-defender