All data is current as of 2013, unless otherwise noted.
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How the right to counsel is administered and structured

State commission: yes
Branch of government: judicial

Missouri statutes place oversight of the right to counsel with the seven-member Public Defender Commission. All seven members are appointed by the governor with advice and consent of the Senate.


How the right to counsel is funded

Percentage of state funding: 100%
Percentage of local funding: 0%
Percentage of alternative funding: 0%

The methods used to provide public counsel

The Missouri State Public Defender (MSPD) has 33 trial-level public defender offices providing services to adult and juvenile clients in 45 judicial circuits covering the state’s 115 counties. Unlike most other state public defender systems that have a separate system for conflict representation, the Missouri public defender system assigns a neighboring public defender office to provide representation in multiple defendant and other conflict cases. Missouri uses assigned counsel or contract defenders in less than 5% of all cases.


Legal authority

Missouri Constitution, art. 1, § 18(a)

Missouri Revised Statutes, §§ 600.011 through 600.101 (public defenders)

Source of data: original research conducted by Sixth Amendment Center staff.