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Master's Professional Reports Abstract

State Post-Conviction Representation for Death Row Inmates: An Analysis of Texas Policies on Attorney Appointment, Compensation, and Performance
Susan Maxwell
Report 2000 M451 Public Affairs Library

Within the ongoing policy debate over administration of the death penalty in Texas, elected officials and legal advocates continue to examine state provisions for appointing counsel to indigent defendants. This Report assesses the development, during the 1990s, of Texas law and policy governing attorney appointments for state post-conviction proceedings. The analysis is presented in the larger context of federal policy and capital post-conviction representation provided by the nonprofit and private legal community. These interlocking policy responses of the public and private sectors underscore the significance of competent representation during the state post-conviction phase of death penalty cases. Based on the analysis of Texas legislation and judicial practice, the Report concludes with several recommendations directed at further improvement of Texas policy on capital state habeas representation.