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THE INVESTIGATORS: EBR public defender’s office doubles down on ‘mission’ as ‘peer review’ continues

East Baton Rouge Parish Chief Public Defender Lisa Parker
East Baton Rouge Parish Chief Public Defender Lisa Parker(St. John the Baptist Public Defender's Office/WAFB)
Published: Apr. 29, 2022 at 5:17 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - The East Baton Rouge Parish public defender’s office seeks to reassure the public that it is “working hard” for its clients, at the same time as an ongoing state investigation into allegations of wrongdoing in the office.

Chief Public Defender Lisa Parker released a statement Friday, April 29 saying the main focus in that office has, “always been to defend and provide zealous representation for the indigent in need of fair representation.”

The State Public Defender’s Office has been tasked with investigating claims that a large number of employees have left the office since Parker took on a leadership role.

READ MORE HERE: THE INVESTIGATORS: State representative calls for investigation into EBR public defender’s office

State Representative C. Denise Marcelle, who has also publicly called for an investigation into Parker, claimed that some of those employees have filed lawsuits against the Public Defender’s Office.

Parkers spokesperson in office addressed those concerns in the letter Friday saying, “With a focus on providing the best for the indigent community, Chief Lisa Parker has made changes and improvements to the office to provide the structure needed to be a more efficient office. Since July of 2021, the Office of the Public Defender has lost staff members for various reasons including needed attorneys. Committed to service, the office has filled those vacant positions.”

It is unclear how soon the investigation from the State Public Defender’s Office could wrap up.

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