Welcome to the Alternate Public Defender's Office
Any person facing criminal charges or termination of his or her parental rights and cannot afford an attorney is potentially entitled to the services of the Washoe County Alternate Public Defender's office. There are fifteen employees in the office, including Jennifer Lunt, who heads the office. Staff consists of nine lawyers, two investigators, two legal secretaries and two office support specialists. There is at least one bi-lingual staff member to handle inquiries from those who speak Spanish.
The attorneys in the office also handle cases involving juveniles who are involved in the juvenile justice system, and parents who have had their children removed from their care and are in custody of Washoe County Social Services.
The mission of the office is to protect the constitutional rights of the indigent by providing them a voice in their defense in Washoe County Courtrooms.
Contact information: Washoe County Alternate Public Defender, Mailing: P.O. Box 11130, Reno, NV 89520; Physical: 350 S. Center St., 6th Flr, Reno, NV 89501
Phone: (775) 328-3955 Fax: (775) 328-3998
The office handles adult criminal cases ranging from misdemeanor domestic batteries up to and including murder cases where the prosecutor is seeking the death penalty. Any criminal defendant who is sent to drug court or diversion court is represented by an attorney from the Alternate Public Defender's Office.
The Alternate Public Defender's office was created in March of 2007. The office handles cases where, because of conflicts of interest, the Public Defender's office is unable to represent the client. Generally, those seeking to have an attorney appointed must make the request for court-appointed counsel. The case is initially sent to the Public Defender's Office. If the Public Defender's Office cannot represent the client, the case is transferred to the Alternate Public Defender's Office.