Week in Review: June 22-26

Another week down Readers! How are you feeling? Ready to get off, grab some ice cold lemonade and enjoy some front porch action? Us too, so let’s get down to business.

TIP OF THE WEEK!

District court is generally not a court of record, however juvenile delinquency court is a court of record.  That means that you are creating a record for use on appeal if that becomes necessary at the conclusion of your case.  In addition to making sure you preserve the record for appeal (more on that later), you may want to consider requesting an audio recording of a proceeding for other reasons.  For example, if you have a probable cause hearing, you may want to request the audio recording (and possibly have it transcribed) for use in the subsequent adjudicatory hearing.  The AOC form to request the audio recording of your hearing is AOC-G-115.

Webinars & Resources!

The North Carolina Commission on Racial and Ethnic Disparities in the Criminal Justice System is hosting a webinar, Policing & Racial Justice: Where Do We Go From Here?, June 29 at 12:00 PM.

Topics include: police brutality, qualified immunity, the “defund the police” debate, and racial justice in the wake of the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and others. Presenters include: Frank Baumgartner, Kami Chavis, Cerelyn “C.J.” Davis and Greear Webb. See more information and register here.

As we close out our LGBTQ+ Pride Week, we wanted to share some important resources:

LGBTQ Cultural Competency Links –

Please read more about Pride Week and the historic Stonewall Riots written by Anthony Benedetti, Chief Counsel, Committee for Public Counsel Services in Boston, MA.

Job Seeking Anyone?

  • NCPLS is searching for a new Executive Director. Applications will be accepted until June 30th. NCPLS is a 501(c)(3) non-profit law firm that provides people incarcerated by the North Carolina Division of Adult Correction with constitutionally required meaningful access to the courts. The Executive Director has primary responsibility for managing the organization’s day-to-day operations, directing the work of the staff, and serving as the primary spokesperson for the organization. Click here for description and application!
  • Strategies for Youth (SFY), a national nonprofit organization committed to improving police/youth interactions and reducing disproportionate minority contact, is seeking a new staff attorney. They are considering remote candidates. Please read more about this amazing opportunity here.

Alright Readers! That’s all for this week. We hope you have a great weekend and we will see you on our Twitter (@NCOJD) and Facebook (North Carolina Office of the Juvenile Defender) on Monday!!

Week in Review: May 25-29

We’re already back at the weekend AND greeting June on Sunday. Can you believe how time flies? Who would think when we’re all home, all the time. We hope your Memorial Day weekend was restful!

Tip of the Week – Building Trust

Especially during the era of Covid-19, innvesting time is the single most important strategy for building trust and rapport with your client.  You need to listen and ask questions without judgment, and explain why you need to ask certain questions.  Allow your client the opportunity, and encourage him/her to ask questions as well.  Be sure to explain to your client how your role is different from other adults s/he has interacted with (i.e. attorney/client privilege).  And most importantly – never make a promise you can’t keep.  If you say you’re going to do something – do it!

IDS HAS A NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR!

From NC AOC Communications:

The North Carolina Commission on Indigent Defense Services has appointed Mary Pollard as the new executive director of the North Carolina Office of Indigent Defense Services (IDS). Pollard’s legal career spans 27 years, most of which she spent working to protect the rights of indigent, incarcerated people. A Raleigh resident and mother of two, Pollard is a graduate of the Wake Forest University School of Law.

You can read the Press Release about Mary and her appointment here.

Resources

  1. UNC School of Government released a new blog post via On the Civil Side: Juvenile Justice Pandemic Lessons written by Jacquelyn Greene. You can click here to read this great blog.
  2. The next 2020 SJDC Virtual Summit presentation is next Friday, June 5th. Topic? Virtual Reality: Representing Juveniles in Remote Courtrooms 2:00 (ET) – 3:30 (ET) Panelists: Gar Blume, Tim Curry, Angela Vigil. Registration Link:  https://emory.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_ddRytFWkSGajsMfBXDHjWA

WE HAVE SOME INTRODUCTIONS COMING TO YOU NEXT WEEK. CAN YOU GUESS WHO THEY ARE?

Week in Review: May 11-15

Another week down, many more more to go. Thank you for coming back to read another week in review with OJD. There’s a few webinars we want to tell you about and as always, a Tip of the Week. Short and sweet so you can go grill some hot dogs in this nice weather (save a burnt one for LaTobia) 😀

TIP OF THE WEEK

When Should I Receive the Disposition Report?

You should try to receive the disposition report prior to the dispositional hearing to review with your client.  If possible, try to get a copy of the report at least several days prior to the hearing.  While there is no statutory authority compelling the receipt from the intake counselor, there are local rules which suggest time periods.

Congratulations are in order to LaToya Powell who was named this years CHILDREN’S CHAMPION by the NC Bar Association’s Juvenile Justice and Children’s Rights Section at their annual meeting yesterday!!!!!!!! Congratulations LaToya and thank you for all your hard work defending and protecting children!!

  • Our first DEFENDER ONLY Online CLE Webinar: Video Conference Secure Custody Hearings, is next Friday, May 22 at 11:00 AM. It is a FREE CLE to the first 75 DEFENDERS. To register for this training, click HERE. Place your Job Title & Bar Number in: Job Title to ensure proper CLE credit.  Also include your organization in the Company field.
  • May 15 at 1:00 pm, Dr. Maureen Reardon of @NC_IDS and the Guilford County Public Defender’s Office is hosting a 1 Hour Online CLE on Working with Mental Health Experts: Psychological Testing in Criminal Cases. Register here for this great webinar!
  • May 18, 2020 at 12:00 PM join Strategies for Helping Youth Cope During Uncertain Times Webinar with Ruby Brown-Herring, from the NC Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Substance Abuse Services. You can register here for this webinar.
  • OJJDP is hosting a webinar May 21, 1:00 to 2:15 PM, on Mentoring and Supporting Young People’s Mental Health and Well-being. It will focused on strategies and resources to support mental health for juveniles. Register here.

That sums up this week, have a great (and safe!) weekend! – OJD

Week In Review: March 23-27

Welcome to Friday! OJD would again like to thank all of our public defenders who are continuing their work while a crisis sweeps through our state. This week we want to focus on some resources and news regarding the youth in secure custody. As stated earlier this week, courts around the country are limiting or altogether restricting visitation to juvenile detention to combat the spread of COVID-19. While at a base level these limitations are important to the safety and physical health of these youth, another issue has come from these sweeping changes: added mental health stress. We want to equip our defenders with as much information as we can to advocate for those currently in YDCs or detention centers.

Secure Custody Tip of the Week:

Use of Audio/Video Transmission for Secure Custody Hearings 

North Carolina law allows for the use of audio and video transmission for secure custody hearings.  Under 7B-1906(h), note specifically that “[I]f the juvenile has counsel, the juvenile may communicate fully and confidentially with the juvenile’s attorney during the proceeding.” 

Currently your court may not have the equipment needed to perform these hearings.  But if your court does have the equipment, here are a few tips to consider: 

  • When possible, collaborate with stakeholders on how to develop rules or protocols that will ensure clients’ rights are considered, especially confidential communications.
  • Having the ability to engage in confidential communications with your client is paramount, so be mindful of the type of technology used to converse with your client.  Also, there should be created a space where others cannot hear your or your client’s discussions.  For example, don’t use a phone without some kind of barrier prevent others from hearing your conversation. 
  • Check out the School of Government’s Professor Jacqui Greene’s recent article on secure custody.  

Courts may be considering other communication platforms as well, such as Facetime, Skype, Zoom or Microsoft Teams.  If any of these are utilized, try to maintain confidentiality as best possible by ensuring other participants are in closed rooms or otherwise out of sight and sound of others. 

Use your best judgement, and always feel free to contact our office with any questions. 

COVID-19 Resources

Throughout the week we have received numerous resources regarding court, secure custody and COVID-19. We wanted to round those up for you here.

FD.ORG COVID-19 Resources: The Defender Services Office and the Administrative Office of the United States Courts have collected information from around the country for defense council varying from appeals, compassionate release, and access to council.

Physicians for Criminal Justice Reform: A letter written by Physicians for Criminal Justice Reform urging governors, juvenile court systems, and state and local juvenile detention and correctional departments to address the health pandemic by swiftly implementing recommendations in juvenile facilities.

Due Process Challenges in a Time of Crisis Webinar: A webinar opportunity that may shed some light on the challenges the legal system is currently experiencing due to the Coronavirus. A little information can go a long way in times like this. 

ADA Letter Regarding COVID-19 & Diabetes: Shared by NACDL,  a letter the American Diabetes Association has created to help educate courts, detention center, and other officials on the unique challenges and risks for individuals with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. It can be used alongside bond/release motions or shared with local law enforcement.

ABA Non-CLE Webinar on NJ’s Rapid Release: On Sunday, March 22, 2020, the Chief Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court entered an Order providing for the commutation or suspension of many county jail sentences. his webinar will feature many of the key players to discuss the actual terms of the Order, how they came to agreement and how this agreement might serve as a model for decreasing jail populations to limit the spread of COVID-19 in other states.

Resources for Private Council & Small Businesses: Provided by one of our contract attorneys, Donna Terrell, this is a great resource for staying engaged with clients and potential clients while running a private practice.

HAVE SAFE SOCIAL DISTANCING WEEKEND!

Week in Review: March 16-20

Welcome to Friday, March 20. As we recognize this week was more difficult than most, OJD would like to thank everyone for their patience and dedication to making sure our youth are taken care of, still well represented and fought for. Defenders, you are superheroes.

Appeals Tip of the Week: Courtesy of David Andrews, Office of the Appellate Defender

Suppression motions and admissions – Give the prosecutor and the court notice of the juvenile’s intent to appeal the suppression order before the juvenile enters the admission AND enter notice of appeal from the dispositional order (not from the suppression order)! 

Court Updates

There have been a few court updates and directives by Chief Justice Beasley to help our community slow the spread of COVID-19. Read below for announcements from the North Carolina Judicial Branch and NCAOC Communications.

On March 13, she issued two emergency directivespostponing most cases in superior and district courts for 30 days and instructing local officials to take steps to limit the risk of exposure in courthouses.

On March 15, 2020, Chief Justice Beasley issued a memo providing guidance to local judges, clerks, and district attorneys as they worked to implement earlier directives. The memo allowed for the public and court personnel to practice social distancing and other preventative measures recommended by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the Center for Disease Control. 

On March 19, she announced an order extending filing deadlines and further curtailing other court processes. The order states that documents due to be filed from March 16 to April 17 will be deemed timely filed if received before the close of business on April 17, 2020, and that any actions required to be done during that time can also be postponed until April 17, 2020. 

If you have any questions regarding these orders, please contact your local clerk or visit the Juno website.

North Carolina Celebrates 50 Years of Public Defense

March 18 was declared Public Defender Day in North Carolina by Chief Justice Cheri Beasley and Governor Roy Cooper. The first public defender office opened in January, 1970 in Guilford County. Cumberland and Hoke counties opened offices in the summer that same year. 

OJD is an office full of public defenders and we are happy to help train, develop and support those who currently support our juvenile justice community, those who are just starting juvenile work, and those who will in the future. Here’s a couple shots of OJD in their Anniversary shirts (well, Eric and LaTobia).

Podcast Alert!

The revamped OJD Podcast is here! We are still searching for a new name so if you have any ideas and would like to win a prize…email us your thoughts!

You can listen to the new podcast here on Soundcloud.

Please feel free to send us your comments, suggestions, and thoughts regarding our first podcast release. We’d love to hear from you!

Want to be a guest with a Juvenile Justice topic? Email LaTobia.

Week in Review: Jan 20-24

Happy Friday Readers! This week was not only a short one, but an easier one at OJD. Couple consultations, a little bit of court, you know? The usual. We’re happy to help our Public Defenders at each point of their case and even guided a couple out of state defenders to where they can find answers about North Carolina!

Appeals Tip of the Week: Courtesy of David Andrews, Office of the Appellate Defender

To preserve issues for appeal, object to any evidence that you suspect is inadmissible. Make sure you provide specific grounds for your objections and constitutionalize your objections. Lastly, get a ruling.  If you don’t get a ruling, the argument might be waived on appeal.

Training

Don’t forget about our upcoming trainings in Watauga (03/19) and Richmond (03/31) Counties, and also our day long Juvenile Defender Enhancement training here at AOC. Want the direct link to the sign up? RSVP for the JD Enhancement Training ends 02/14/2020.

There’s also the Intensive Juvenile Defender Training sponsored by the UNC School of Government. Want more information? Click here.

That is all the information we have for you this week! Keep watch as there is another exciting announcement coming by OJD soon. 😀

Week in Review: Jan 13-17

Happiest of Friday’s to you OJD readers! This week was full of meetings and trainings… AND INTERVIEWS! We narrowed down the candidates for the Assistant Juvenile Defender position and began the second round of interviews this week. We’re so excited to have a new attorney with us in the office, this is going to be a hard choice!

APPEALS TIP OF THE WEEK: Courtesy of David Andrews, Office of the Appellate Defender

  • When you appeal, do these things:
    • Make sure the juvenile has the right to appeal. Generally, the juvenile can appeal from a dispositional order.
    • Give proper and timely notice of appeal.
    • Prepare an appellate entries with all of the hearing dates and have the judge sign it on the day you give notice of appeal.
    • Ask the judge to stay the dispositional order.
    • If the dispositional order is not stayed and the order requires the juvenile to be placed in custody, argue that compelling reasons do not exist to keep the juvenile in custody during the appeal.
    • Make sure the clerk sends the recordings to the court reporter and the court file to the appellate attorney in a timely manner.

Public Defenders! Wonder what the rate is for your current cases? Click here for the IDS Rate Information & Calculators.

Upcoming Trainings:

Juvenile Defender Enhancement Training February 26, 2020 – Sponsored by the Office of the Juvenile Defender, this training will provide vital Juvenile Defense topics such as: Transfer Hearings, Raise the Age Advocacy and Addressing Trauma in Adolescents. We have guest speakers and are covering the CLE cost & reporting 6 CLE training hours.

Intensive Juvenile Defender Training, March 4-5, 2020 – Brought to you by the UNC School of Government. The training will offer approximately 12.75 hours of CLE credit, which includes one hour of ethics. The tentative agenda is posted on the course page. Final session times may vary depending on the schedules of the instructors. Click the link for more information!

JOB OPENINGS

Center for Death Penalty Litigation (CDPL)

The Center for Death Penalty Litigation (CDPL) in Durham, North Carolina has two openings for staff attorneys.

CDPL is a non-profit law firm and advocacy organization that works to provide the highest quality representation to people facing execution, and to end the death penalty in North Carolina.  CDPL is committed to diversity and racial equity and is an equal opportunity employer. 

For details about the positions and how to apply, please click here.

UNC School of Government

The UNC School of Government seeks a tenure-track assistant professor who will specialize in the field of criminal law. This position will be responsible for educating judicial officials on North Carolina criminal law. Click here for the announcement.

Disability Rights North Carolina (DRNC)

Disability Rights North Carolina (DRNC) is seeking a Staff Attorney for their Education Team with a Juvenile Justice and Race Equity Focus. The Staff Attorney will work to ensure equity in the education and criminal justice systems; represent students in special education, and school discrimination matters, including youth in juvenile detention facilities; train attorneys, advocates and other stakeholders; and participate in policy initiatives related to the school-to-prison pipeline.

Send a resume and detailed letter of interest explaining your qualifications and interest in the position to: virginia.fogg@disabilityrightsnc.org. Include Staff Attorney – Education in the subject line of the email. No phone calls please.

Wow! That was a LOT of information. If you have any questions please feel free to contact the office and we can help! See you next week!

Intensive Juvenile Defender Training, March 4-5, 2020

From the UNC School of Government:

We are excited to announce that the 2020 Intensive Juvenile Defender Training, cosponsored by the School of Government and the Office of Indigent Defense Services, will be held on March 4-5, 2020 at the UNC School of Government.

It is designed for attorneys representing juveniles in delinquency proceedings for less than two years or who have not practiced in this area for a period of time. The course will include, among other topics, sessions on detention advocacy, pre-adjudication investigation and discovery, juvenile capacity, suppression, dispositions, and the impact of the Raise the Age legislation.

The training will offer approximately 12.75 hours of CLE credit, which includes one hour of ethics. The tentative agenda is posted on the course page. Final session times may vary depending on the schedules of the instructors

PARTICIPANTS: The Intensive Juvenile Defender Training is open to public defenders and private attorneys who represent juveniles in delinquency proceedings or attorneys who want to practice in this area.

TIMES: Check-in will be on Wednesday, March 4, 2020 from 8:30 am, and the program will begin at 9:00 am. The program ends on Thursday March 5, 2020 at 5:00 pm.

REGISTRATION: To register online, as well as to find directions and other program information, please visit: https://www.sog.unc.edu/courses/intensive-juvenile-defender-training

The registration fee for private assigned counsel is $310. Thanks to support from IDS, there is no fee for IDS employees. Pre-registration is required and space is limited; the online registration deadline is 5:00pm on wednesday Feburary 26, 2020. There is no onsite registration.

HOTEL INFORMATION: A block of rooms has been set up at the newly renovated Holiday Inn Express Chapel Hill with a rate of $84.00 plus tax. The rate includes a full deluxe hot breakfast and Wi-Fi. To reserve a room online please click the link  Intensive Juvenile Defender    To reserve a room by phone call the hotel at 919-489-7555 and provide the name Group Code “I J D”. To receive the discounted rate reservations must be made no later than February 14, 2020.

TRAVEL REIMBURSEMENT – STATE EMPLOYEES ONLY: If you are an IDS employee, your eligibility for travel reimbursement at the state rate is contingent upon state rules and regulations. For all questions regarding travel reimbursement, please contact Elisa Wolper at 919-354-7243 or elisa.wolper@nccourts.org.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: We look forward to seeing you in March.  If you have any questions or would like additional information, please contact me, Kate Jennings – Program Manager – at jennings@sog.unc.edu or Professor John Rubin at rubin@sog.unc.edu.

Week in Review: Dec 6-10

It’s the first week back from a long holiday break and OJD has been busy with all things #RaiseTheAge. Have a question or a case you could use some help on? Don’t hesistate to give us a call. We are here for you!

Januar January 2020 marks the 50th Anniversary of North Carolina’s Public Defender System. Take a look at Eric with North Carolina’s FIRST Public Defender, Wallace “Wally” C. Harrelson.

Raise the Age Tip of The Week

How Do I Know the State Will be Seeking the Gang Enhancement Against My Juvenile?

Under current law, there is no process for notice to the juvenile and the juvenile’s attorney that the state is seeking the gang enhancement.  As the juvenile’s attorney, you should consider the following:

  • Get a copy of the gang assessment from DJJ prior to adjudication
  • Argue that the notice of gang enhancement be presented pre-adjudication
  • Develop a theory of defense against client’s involvement in gang activity
  • Prepare for a hearing on the issue
  • Request a hearing, similar to an adjudicatory hearing
  • Request the court make findings on the record and appeal where  appropriate

Training!

Today Eric & Austine are traveling to Lenoir County for a Raise the Age and Juvenile Basics CLE. It’s from 1-4. See the flyer below!

2020 JTIP Summer Academy

The deadline for applications to the 2020 JTIP Summer Academy is fast approaching! Applications are due no later than January 12th, 2020, 11:59 PM EST.

*If you have already applied for the JTIP Summer Academy or you plan to submit an application, please contact Austine Long as soon as possible.

The National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC) and Georgetown Law Juvenile Justice Initiative are excited be accepting applications for the 2020 Juvenile Training Immersion Program (JTIP) Summer Academy, which will be held in Washington, DC from May 31 – June 6, 2020.

For more information on how to apply visit https://njdc.info/our-work/jtip/jtip-summer-academy/ or see the attached application.

JOB OPPORTUNITY!

Disability Rights North Carolina (DRNC) is seeking a Staff Attorney for their Education Team with a Juvenile Justice and Race Equity Focus. The Staff Attorney will work to ensure equity in the education and criminal justice systems; represent students in special education, and school discrimination matters, including youth in juvenile detention facilities; train attorneys, advocates and other stakeholders; and participate in policy initiatives related to the school-to-prison pipeline.

Send a resume and detailed letter of interest explaining your qualifications and interest in the position to: virginia.fogg@disabilityrightsnc.org. Include Staff Attorney – Education in the subject line of the email. No phone calls please.

Exciting News!

OJD is preparing to record our first podcast of the year! Interested in being a guest? Email LaTobia for a reservation!