Tennessee Office of the Post-Conviction Defender
530 Church Street
The Tennessee Office of the Post-Conviction Defender is an independent agency of the government of the State of Tennessee. The primary duty of the Office is to provide high quality legal representation to any person convicted and sentenced to the death penalty in the State of Tennessee who is unable to secure legal counsel due to indigence. The Office also provides information, materials, and consultation free-of-charge to public defenders and private attorneys in the State of Tennessee who represent individuals charged with or convicted of death-eligilbe offenses in the State of Tennessee.
The Office currently is staffed with nine attorneys, three investigators, three paralegals, two legal secretaries, an information technology director, and an office administrator. The sole office is located in downtown Nashville, Tennessee. We practice in Tennessee trial courts, appellate courts, and in the Tennessee Supreme Court.
The Eighth Amendment to the United States Constitution requires that all jurisdictions that authorize the use of the death penalty as a sanction within its criminal justice system to ensure that the use of this extraordinary sanction is neither arbitrary nor unreliable. The Office of the Post-Conviction Defender assists in ensuring the reliability and non-arbitrary use of the death penalty in Tennessee by providing high-quality legal representation to indigent death-sentenced inmates in state post-conviction proceedings and other collateral attacks to their convictions and sentences.
The Office further contributes to the protection of a constitutional death penalty by maintaining a brief bank and other materials for use by attorneys who are representing individuals charged with or convicted of death penalty-eligible offenses by conducting non-case-specific consultations with those attorneys and by assisting in training and recruiting qualified attorneys to provide representation in death penalty proceedings.
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