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Thursday, June 29, 2017

THE VI AMENDMENT - Derwyn Bunton, Defenseless

Derwyn Bunton - Chief Public Defender - New Orleans
A lawyer poorly resourced can cause irreparable harm to a client,” says Chief NOLA Public Defender Derwyn Bunton.

“You do your best, but a lot of times you can’t provide the kind of representation that the Constitution, our code of ethics and professional standards would have you provide.” Derwyn Bunton

Derwyn Bunton has been head of the New Orleans Public Defenders’ office for the last eight years. The 52 lawyers on his staff are responsible for representing more than 20,000 people a year who are unable to afford a private attorney.

You know feeling like you’re always coming up short. Um, you know, the first 1,000 clients, you feel terrible. The second 1,000 clients, you feel awful. The third 1,000, 3,000 in, it doesn’t feel so bad anymore. One morning I woke up and I just felt like, “I’m not even angry about this anymore.” It’s just everyday to me. Everyday my clients are going away for a decade. And I just move along to the next client.
Nine current and former New Orleans public defenders admit they do not have the time or the budget to adequately represent every client.

Lindsay Samuel was an ex-Public Defender attorney in the office of Public Defender Chief Bunton. 

She said 3000 cases in.  These are 3000 human beings with civil and legal rights on paper.  In law.  In Amendment VI of the Constitution. 

Amendment VI
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.

In order for there to be DEMOCRACY (a government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections) and SANCTUARY (safety,  a place of refuge and protection) each one of the OWNERS of America must subscribe to the laws that protect its people in America.

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