Regional Assistant Public Defender


Assistant Public Defender

Salary: $70,000 – $92,000, plus benefits including health insurance, retirement, and 3 weeks of vacation.

Location: Atascosa, Wilson, Karnes and Frio Counties (four counties of the 81st-218th Judicial District)

Please submit resume and cover letter via email to Chief Public Defender Becky James at [email protected]; or mail to Chief Public Defender, 1501 Campbell Ave, Jourdanton, TX 78026. Open until filled.

Job Summary:

Atascosa Area Advocates, a Regional Public Defender’s Office, is seeking entry-level and experienced Assistant Public Defenders, to represent the accused who have been found eligible for appointed legal counsel in the Counties of Atascosa, Frio, Karnes, and Wilson, located near San Antonio, Texas. This position provides quality legal defense to indigent individuals charged with misdemeanor, juvenile, and felony criminal offenses. This position offers excellent training, both within the office and through external organizations. Caseloads are limited pursuant to effective representation guidelines established by the Texas Indigent Defense Commission. The office uses a team-based approach, which provides intensive mentoring and significant experience with the full range of cases handled by the office and the opportunity for increased responsibility with increased experience.

Entry-level Assistant Public Defenders will have primary responsibility, with supervision, to handle misdemeanor caseloads. Additional responsibilities will include assisting in felony trial preparation and trials and consulting with felony complainants and witnesses. Experienced Assistant Public Defenders will have primary responsibility for felony caseloads. Both positions will also include appellate work.

This is an exciting opportunity to be on the ground floor of a holistic, client-centered regional public defender’s office and to make a difference in clients’ lives and in the criminal justice system as a whole. The office is forming a team of approximately 14 felony and misdemeanor Assistant Public Defenders to work together as energetic and enthusiastic advocates for indigent defendants. Atascosa, Wilson, Karnes and Frio Counties are ideally located in South Central Texas. Our region is adjacent to and easily commutable from San Antonio, and is a short drive from Austin, Houston and beaches along the Gulf Coast.

Minimum Qualifications:

• Juris Doctor degree from an accredited law school or anticipated for May 2023.
• Licensed by the State Bar of Texas and must be in good standing with the State Bar; or for entry-level positions, eligible for admission following the next bar exam.
• At least one year of criminal law experience to be considered for felony positions.