American Council of Chief Defenders | ACCD

Wesley Shackelford

Speaker's Last Name: 
Shackelford
Title: 
Deputy Director/Special Counsel
Organization: 
Texas Task Force on Indigent Defense
Address
Street: 
205 W. 14th St., Ste. 600
City: 
Austin
State: 
Texas
Zip Code: 
78701-1614
Phone: 
512-936-6997
Fax: 
512-475-3450
Photo: 

Wesley Shackelford serves as Deputy Director/Special Counsel to the Task Force on Indigent Defense (Task Force).  He develops standards and policies for the provision of indigent defense services and acts as team lead on fiscal and policy monitoring programs.  Wesley also provides legal advice on the issue to judges, counties, and the Task Force.

Nancy Bennett

Speaker's Last Name: 
Bennett
Title: 
Deputy Chief Counsel, Private Counsel Division
Organization: 
Committee for Public Counsel Services
Address
Street: 
44 Bromfield Street
City: 
Boston
State: 
Massachusetts
Zip Code: 
02108
Phone: 
617-988-8428
Fax: 
617-988-8495
Photo: 

Nancy Bennett is Deputy Chief Counsel for the Private Counsel Division of the Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS), Boston, MA.

Michael Tobin

Speaker's Last Name: 
Tobin
Title: 
Director, Trial Division
Organization: 
Wisconsin State Public Defender
Address
Street: 
315 N. Henry St.
City: 
Madison
State: 
Wisconsin
Zip Code: 
53703
Phone: 
608-266-8259
Fax: 
608-267-0584
Photo: 

Michael Tobin has worked for the Wisconsin State Public Defender (SPD) since 1979, except for two years off in the mid-eighties for good behavior.  He started as a staff attorney in 1979, left the agency in 1984 to teach at the University of Puget Sound Law School, and returned to the SPD in 1986 as a regional supervisor.

By this letter, the ACCD called upon Attorney General Eric Holder and the Department of Justice to collaborate toward the accomplishment of three major goals: (1) creation of a permanent federal structure that protects and supports the right to counsel; (2) funding of necessary federal resources to support quality public defender services; and (3) provision of high-quality federally funded training for public defense managers, leaders and practitioners. 

Author/Organization: American Council of Chief Defenders (ACCD)
Publication Date: 01/15/2010

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On August 16, 2007, a public defense attorney in Portage County, Ohio was appointed to represent a client on the very day the client's case was set to go to trial by jury.  The attorney asked for a delay to investigate and prepare, but the judge only gave him an extended 2 1/2 hour lunch break.  Unable to proceed with the trial, the attorney was arrested, convicted, and sentenced by the judge for contempt of court.

This Resolution issued, commending the public defense attorney for defending his client's right to effective assistance of counsel, and condemning the judge's actions.

Author/Organization: American Council of Chief Defenders (ACCD)
Publication Date: 08/25/2007

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In 2008, the Board of Commissioners of Cook County was threatening to (and ultimately did) fire the chief Public Defender for the Law Office of the Cook County Public Defender, which provides indigent defense services in Chicago and Cook County, Illinois.  Because it was perceived that the Public Defender was threatened with firing due to his efforts to comply with national standards for indigent defense systems and services, this Resolution was issued. 

Author/Organization: American Council of Chief Defenders (ACCD)
Publication Date: 05/02/2008

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In 2008, the Office of the Public Defender for the 11th Judicial Circuit of Florida, providing indigent defense services for Miami-Dade County, was engaged in litigation regarding excessive caseloads.  This Resolution was issued in connection with that litigation.

Author/Organization: American Council of Chief Defenders (ACCD)
Publication Date: 06/05/2008

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In 2008, the Kentucky Department of Public Advocacy and the Louisville and Jefferson County Public Defender Corporation were engaged in litigation regarding excessive caseloads in their indigent defense systems.  The ACCD issued this Resolution in connection with that litigation.

Author/Organization: American Council of Chief Defenders (ACCD)
Publication Date: 07/22/2008

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The Best Practices Committee of the American Council of Chief Defenders (ACCD) prepared this report to assist administrators of systems that provide representation to indigent defendants by assigning private attorneys.  Recognizing that the American Bar Association's (ABA) Ten Principles of a Public Defense Delivery System (2002) is a concise summary of best practices for indigent defense systems, the report discusses how these principles apply to assigned counsel systems. 

Author/Organization: American Council of Chief Defenders (ACCD)
Publication Date: 09/13/2010

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In 2003, the American Council of Chief Defenders (ACCD) addressed the ethical duties of chief executive officers in indigent defense systems when faced with excessive caseloads. This is the Ethics Opinion issued, which concludes: "A chief executive of an agency providing public defense services is ethically prohibited from accepting a number of cases which exceeds the capacity of the agency's attorneys to provide competent, quality representation in every case."

Author/Organization: American Council of Chief Defenders (ACCD)
Publication Date: 04/2003

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