Assistant Public Defender
Public Defender's Office
[X] PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENT [X] COUNTY EMPLOYEES
ANNOUNCEMENT DATES: March 10, 2021 – April 30, 2021
POSITION TITLE: Assistant Public Defender
# OF POSITIONS: 1 GRADE: 27
SALARY RANGE: $59,259.20 ($28.49/hr.) - $64,105.60 ($30.82/hr.)
SUPERVISOR/DEPARTMENT: Claudia E. Meier, Public Defender
TYPE OF POSITION: [X] CERTIFIED [ ] TEMPORARY [ ] PART-TIME
PURPOSE OF CLASSIFICATION
The purpose of this classification is to perform legal/administrative functions associated with providing legal representation to eligible criminal defendants.
Juris Doctor degree required; one year of experience in practicing law, criminal defense, or a related field; or any equivalent combination of education, training and experience which provides the requisite knowledge, skills, and abilities for this job. Must possess and maintain valid State Bar of Georgia license.
Attached is a copy of the job description. Please review thoroughly. Applications are available on line at houstoncountyga.org, at the County Annex Building, 200 Carl Vinson Parkway, Warner Robins and at the Houston County Public Works Department, 2018 Kings Chapel Road, Perry. Completed applications must be received prior to the end of the announcement dates in order to be considered. Applications and inquiries should be directed to the Personnel Department in Warner Robins or call 478-542-2005 and fax# 478-542-2118. As a last step prior to being employed, all applicants will be required to pass a drug test and a criminal background check. The drug test and background check will be administered by a physician/agency selected by the Board of Commissioners.
HOUSTON COUNTY IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER
The following duties are normal for this position. These are not to be construed as exclusive or all-inclusive. Other duties may be required and assigned.
Provides legal representation to eligible defendants.
Represents defendants in criminal jury trials, non-jury trials, preliminary hearings, probation violation hearings, motion hearings, bond hearings, jury trial calendar calls, non-jury trial calendar calls, or other legal actions.
Conducts initial interviews and jail visits with clients; maintains ongoing communications with clients and family members to discuss details of case.
Conducts investigations of cases; conducts research; collects/reviews information; obtains statements from victims, witnesses, and law enforcement personnel.
Consults with public defender, district attorney, judges, staff attorneys, and other staff members to discuss cases as needed. Conducts plea bargain negotiations.
Prepares for and conducts trials; performs jury selection; prepares/presents opening statements; performs direct and cross examinations; presents evidence; argues motions and objections; prepares jury instructions, closing arguments, publication of verdicts and sentencing; handles appeals processes.
Negotiates sentence recommendations as appropriate based on legal and factual information.
Performs legal research functions; reviews current and updated case law and statutes.
Compiles and/or tracks various administrative and/or statistical data pertaining to departmental operations; makes applicable calculations; prepares or generates reports; maintains records.
Processes a variety of documentation associated with departmental operations, per established procedures and within designated timeframes; distributes documentation or maintains records as appropriate.
Prepares routine correspondence, forms, reports, pleadings, motions, briefs, and other documents via computer and/or typewriter.
Receives various forms, correspondence and other documentation; reviews, responds, forwards, maintains, and/or takes other action as appropriate.
Operates a computer to research, review, enter and/or modify information in database.
Maintains file system of department records.
Answers the telephone; provides information; takes and relays messages and/or directs calls to appropriate personnel; returns calls as necessary.
Responds to routine requests for information from officials, employees, members of the staff, the public or other individuals.
Maintains current publications, manuals, policies/procedures, bulletins, etc., for reference and/or review.
Maintains a comprehensive, current knowledge and awareness of applicable laws and regulations; reads professional literature; maintains professional affiliations; attends workshops and training sessions as appropriate.
Performs general office tasks including data entry, typing, answering telephone, mailing correspondence and checks, making copies, backing up data files, filing, and distributing reports.
Performs other related duties as required.
KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES
Knowledge of civil and criminal law, torts, contracts, civil rights, administrative process, and real property; knowledge of the practices, policies, procedures and methods of the Juvenile, Magistrate, State and Superior Courts; knowledge of the functions, programs and documentation associated with the Juvenile, Magistrate, State and Superior Courts; knowledge of the principles, methods, materials, practices, and references utilized in legal research; knowledge of court structure and court procedures; knowledge of the form and content of various legal instruments and documents; knowledge of legal books; knowledge of departmental functions, organization, and policies; knowledge of standard office and legal office practices and procedures; knowledge of filing and recordkeeping methods; knowledge of business mathematics; knowledge of standard office equipment; and knowledge of basic computer applications and techniques.
Skill in operating standard office equipment; and skill in utilizing various computer software programs relevant to the position.
Ability to interpret and apply state civil and criminal law, torts, contracts, civil rights, administrative process, and real property; ability to assess situations, ascertain facts, and make appropriate decisions; ability to interpret and apply laws firmly, tactfully and impartially; ability to handle complex trial and appellate litigation; ability to understand departmental policies, procedures, rules and regulations; ability to organize work activities and establish priorities; ability to carry out projects with minimal supervision; ability to exercise discretion and independent judgment; ability to maintain confidentiality of department information; ability to gather and compile data for reports; ability to prepare detailed and concise reports; ability to understand and follow complex written and oral instructions; ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing; ability to present complex ideas effectively, both orally and in writing; ability to speak effectively in public; ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with employees, court officials, county officials, other agencies, the legal community, and the general public; ability to effectively interact with various individuals in a firm yet courteous manner, often in stressful or emotional situations; ability to perform required mathematical calculations; ability to operate standard office equipment; and ability to utilize various computer software programs relevant to the position.
TO PERFORM ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS
PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS: Must be able to operate a variety of automated office equipment including a computer, printer, typewriter, copy machine, facsimile machine, camera, VCR, television, calculator, and telephone. Physical demand requirements are at levels of those for light work.
DATA COMPREHENSION: Requires the ability to compare and/or judge the readily observable functional, structural, or compositional characteristics (whether similar to or divergent from obvious standards) of data, people, or things which may include forms, reports, newsletters, legal code books, reference materials, policy manuals, and training manuals.
INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION: Requires the ability to speak with and/or signal people to convey or exchange legal and court-related information, including giving assignments and/or directions to co-workers or assistants as well as communicating with officials and the general public.
LANGUAGE ABILITY: Requires ability to read a variety of legal and court-related documentation, directions, instructions, and methods and procedures. Requires the ability to complete forms and to write complex job related documentation and reports with proper format, punctuation, spelling and grammar, using all parts of speech. Requires the ability to speak with and before others with poise, voice control, and confidence using correct English and well-modulated voice, such as in public speaking situations.
INTELLIGENCE: Requires the ability to learn and understand complex legal and court-related principles and techniques; to understand departmental policies and procedures; to make independent judgments in absence of supervision; and to acquire and be able to expound on knowledge of topics related to primary occupation.
VERBAL APTITUDE: Requires the ability to record and deliver information, such as in a public speaking situation, to explain procedures, and to follow verbal and written instructions.
NUMERICAL APTITUDE: Requires the ability to utilize mathematical formulas; add and subtract totals; multiply and divide totals; determine percentages; determine time and weight; and interpret statistical data.
FORM/SPATIAL APTITUDE: Requires the ability to visually inspect items for proper length, width, and shape using job related equipment.
MOTOR COORDINATION: Requires the ability to coordinate hands and eyes in using automated office equipment.
MANUAL DEXTERITY: Requires the ability to handle a variety of items, automated office equipment, control knobs, switches, etc. Must have the ability to use one hand for twisting motion or turning motion while coordinating other hand with different activities. Must have minimal levels of eye/hand/foot coordination.
COLOR DIFFERENTIATION: May require the ability to discern color.
INTERPERSONAL TEMPERAMENT: Requires the ability to deal with and relate to people beyond giving and receiving instructions. Must be able to adapt to and perform under considerable stress when confronted with an emergency.
PHYSICAL COMMUNICATION: Requires the ability to talk, express, or exchange ideas by means of spoken words and/or hear and perceive nature of sounds by ear.