ASU A-Z Index
Colleges & Schools
News & Events
Centers & Programs
Alumni and Friends
Support ASU Law
College of Law News
Bender interviewed in The Arizona Republic
was quoted in an article in the March 17 issue of The Arizona Republic about a possible shortage of court-appointed attorneys in the near future due to budget cuts.
The article, “Experts: Right to attorney is at risk as cuts hit,” by staff writer JJ Hensley, explores the history of Gideon vs. Wainwright, a U.S. Supreme Court case from 1963 that guaranteed the right to legal representation in state courts for any suspect who could not afford one.
Recent layoffs in the Maricopa County Public Defender’s Office and a budget gridlock in Washington, D.C., may lead to slower and less effective advice for defendants who cannot afford an attorneys, sources told Hensley.
Everybody would agree, I think, that people — regardless of whether they have money or not — are entitled to an adequate defense. If public defenders are swamped the way they are, that means that it’s going to be impossible for some people to get an adequate defense. That can lead to innocent people being convicted. It also leads to plea bargains of cases that shouldn’t be plea- bargained,” Bender said.
“People should be concerned about that ... just as a matter of fairness and constitutional principle. It’s in everybody’s interest to have that system work well,” he said.
To read the article, click
Bender teaches courses on U.S. and Arizona constitutional law. He has argued more than 20 cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, and actively participates in constitutional litigation in federal and state courts.