Ethical Minefield

Jan 22, 2019

Lawyers seek to reform 'Ethical Minefield' of public defenders office controlled by Texas prison system. Last week ,David O'neil stood before the Texas board of Criminal Justice with an awkward request; He asked nine Governor-appointed board members to relinquish their control over the Texas prison system's little- known public defender's office.

O'neil ran the trial section of the state counsel for offenders (SCFO) ,which is overseen by the state prison board,until 2000, When he says he felt forced to resign.O'neil is one of many former (SCFO) employees now urging officials to fix what appears to be anomaly of the Texas Criminal Justice system ; an indigent defense office for prisoners thats controlled by the state prison board .O'neill and other defense lawyers claim the interference and influence from state prison officials essentially made it impossible for them to do their jobs - namely, to defend poor inmates accused of commiting crimes inside Texas prisons.