The Pretrial Fairness Act (PFA) is the part of the larger SAFE-T Act that was signed into law in February 2021. The law makes reforms to Illinois' criminal justice system centered on increasing Safety, Accountability, Fairness and Equity.
The Cook County Public Defender’s Arrest Hotline – 844-817-4448 – operates 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, taking calls and providing vital legal representation for people being detained by law enforcement anywhere in Chicago and Cook County.
Do you need help getting back your suspended or revoked driver's license? The Cook County Public Defender's Office is proud to co-host the seventh installment of the Driver's License Reinstatement Expo. The expo is September 17 at Malcolm X College and volunteer attorneys from our office will participate.
Assistant Public Defenders Margaret Armalas and Megan Tomlinson discuss the shocking pattern of racist enforcement of gun possession laws in Chicago in an op-ed published in the Chicago Tribune.
Sharone Mitchell, Jr., and the progressive case against gun permits - New York Times First Person podcast
Mitchell is the public defender for Cook County, which includes Chicago, a city with some of the strictest gun laws in the country. Growing up on the South Side, Mitchell was raised to believe that guns are dangerous and harmful, a view that was reinforced by his experiences as a public defender and gun control advocate. But those experiences have also led him to believe that gun-permitting laws are harmful, as he explains to Lulu Garcia-Navarro in this episode of the New York Times First Person podcast.
False alarms involving electronic monitors are a huge issue for clients of the Cook County Public Defender's Office who are placed on house arrest while awaiting trial. The consequences can be very serious, including being put in jail or charged with a crime. The Chicago Reader and The Triibe looked into this issue.
Dozens of children have been unjustly held in the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center even though judges ordered them released. That is because the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services says it has nowhere to send them. Andrea Lubelfeld, Chief of our Juvenile Division, spoke out about the problem in a story for WBEZ.
Immigration Attorneys at the Cook County Public Defender's Office Begin Representing Immigrants in Removal Proceedings
In a historic step, attorneys from the Cook County Public Defender's Office Immigration Unit Pilot have begun representing immigrants in bond hearings and removal proceedings before the Chicago Immigration Court.
We spent a day on the road with veteran investigator Alicia Stewart to find out all about her inspiring work for the Cook County Public Defender's Office. Alicia's story is the first in an occasional series of stories we will be sharing about the work of our office.
Op-ed published April 7, 2022 in the Chicago Sun-Times.