Missouri Public Defender System

Flickr/david-shane

The chair of Missouri's House Judiciary Committee is proposing reductions in the state's public defender system.

Republican State Representative Stanley Cox of Sedalia says public defenders would still handle the most serious cases for indigent defendants, but the more minor cases would be bid out to private attorneys.

Cox says this would address the caseload issues public defenders have long complained about.

(via Flickr/steakpinball)

The Missouri state auditor released a report Wednesday on the state’s Public Defender system.

Among the findings: public defenders need to better track the hours they spend on each case and update the standards they use to determine what’s the appropriate caseload.

Auditor Tom Schweich says Public Defenders have relied on national standards that are out-of-date.