I am a single parent and I'm currently unemployed. My resources are extremely limited. I don't really have any family or friends that can afford to help me with my predicament. I have a charge that a competent attorney will be able to get dismissed. However I'm at the mercy of a public defender that sleeps during court, has an overwhelming caseload for a man that should have retired several years ago, and doesn't put any thought or effort into defending his clients. He just shows up and lets the prosecution have total control. It's as if he's just riding it out until he can collect his pension. It's painfully obvious and apparent that he doesn't enjoy his job or have any ambition to do anything beyond the absolute bare minimum required to keep the job.
So, you come to a public forum, complain about the pd appointed in your case, and what, you expect us to tell you what to do other than to hire one of us? I don't get it when a criminal defendant says nasty things about his or her counsel. You do not think that we can read between the lines and realize that the next victim of your spite will be the very next attorney, no matter how well that attorney represents you? I guess the only thing that you can do is to speak to the supervisor of the pd about this.
R. Jason de Groot, Esq. We do not have an attorney-client relationship. I am not your lawyer. The statements I make do not constitute legal advice. Any statements made by me are based upon the limited facts you have presented, and under the premise that you will consult with a local attorney. This is not an attempt to solicit business. This disclaimer is in addition to any disclaimers that this website has made. I am only licensed in Florida.
You're in a tough spot, with limited options. But you do have some. You could beg, borrow, but do not steal money to hire private counsel. I don't know what you are charged with, don't know if any of your local lawyers will take partial payments, and I do not know what your capabilities are concerning collateral, lines of credits, family situation, etc. That is one option, that perhaps you have already explored.
A second option would be to make an appointment with your current lawyer, and have a sit-down conversation about this problem. Being polite and respectful will go a long way in aiding you. Tell the lawyer what you would like done on the case, and see what he says. Discuss your expectations, and disappointments in the handling of the case so far. Who knows, you cause the guy to become inspired, and you may just light a fire under his seat. While not making any judgments about your current lawyer, I do know the type of lawyer you describe. So I hear ya.
If all this fails, you could politely, and respectfully request the court to appoint a different lawyer. If you are given the opportunity to do that, be prepared to lay out the differences you have with your current lawyer. Typically, judges don't like changing lawyers on pending cases, because it slows down the process, and sometimes that seems to be the only thing they are concerned about, sad to say. So this option may not have much of a chance, but it would all depend on the reasons for your request. Outlining specific requests you have made, that have not been dealt with, will increase the likelihood of success.
Best of luck on this.
I'm sorry you're saddled with an attorney that doesn't seem to be pulling his weight. Many legal defenders do a great job under the volume of cases they are facing.
One thing I recommend in your case, if you're unhappy with your representation, is call some private defense attorneys and see if they will work with you to help you. I think you'll be able to find several attorneys who will work with you on a fee that is reasonable for their services.
You basically have 3 choices. 1. Figure out some way to hire an attorney (friends, loan from a bank, mortgage property, etc.) 2. Address your issue with your attorney in a calm and direct way. If he is called out on his actions, he might see its unacceptable. If he doesn't do anything, you could also go to a supervisor, but I strongly suggest you do that after speaking with him personally. 3. You can ask the judge to appoint a different attorney. You don't have a right to choose your attorney if you don't hire your own so this is not a sure fire option. You also run the risk of annoying the judge if he thinks its a baseless request and if denied, now you have an even more annoyed attorney.
Might not be the greatest options, but I think thats all of them.
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