|Bay Window: Presumed Guilty: Public Defense Statistics
City and County of San Francisco Public Defenderís Office
Employs 84 attorneys
50% are of minority ethnic groups.
50% are women.
In last five years, the number of attorneys rose from 70 to 84.
1999-2000 Budget: $12,162,175
54% of it goes to felony cases (i.e. rape, murder and drug trafficking).
Office handled 22,509 cases in 1999
Average of 270 cases per attorney per year.
Types of Cases: 39%: Felony; 38: Misdemeanor; 19%: Mental Health; 4%: Juvenile
Less than 5% of all cases set for trial ever see a jury.
All statistics obtained from the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics or the California Department of Corrections through the San Francisco Office of the Public Defender Annual Report 2000.
National Indigent Defense Statistics in Nationís 100 Most Populous Counties
In 1972 the U.S. Supreme Court expanded on previous rulings and held that a defendant has a right to counsel in all criminal prosecutions, felony or misdemeanor, that carry the sentence of imprisonment. However, the court did not mandate how states and localities should provide such services. There are three primary means of providing indigent defense counselpublic defender, assigned counsel and contract.
In 1999 in the 100 largest counties, public defender programs were operating in 90 counties, assigned counsel in 89 counties and contract programs in 42 counties.
An estimated $1.2 billion was spent on indigent criminal defense in the nation's 100 largest counties in 1999. This $1.2 billion expenditure represents an estimated 3 percent of all local criminal justice expenditures used for police, judicial services and corrections in these counties.
Indigent criminal defense programs in the largest 100 counties received an estimated 4.2 million cases of which public defenders handled 82 percent of the caseload.*
All statistics obtained through the U.S. Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics: National Survey of Indigent Defense Systems, 1999.
* The total caseload is an underestimate in that many cases handled by the offices were deemed out of the scope of the study, and no data was obtained for the four most populous counties in the State of Maryland.