46 S. South Street
Wilmington, OH 45177
Phone (937) 382-1316
8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday – Friday
Closed for lunch 12 – 1 p.m.
The Office of the Public Defender operates to defend those who are accused of a criminal offense and who are at risk for going to jail. We defend cases including Felonies, Misdemeanors, Preliminary Hearings, Extraditions, and Juvenile. We also handle some Children’s Services cases and some child support contempt cases. We provide these legal services to all persons and base qualification decisions solely on economic status.
WHAT WE DO NOT DO
We do not handle civil cases. If the government through the prosecutor and the police department is not charging you with a crime we probably won’t be able to represent you. Some examples of civil cases include:
If your legal case or questions fall into one of these categories you may want to contact a private attorney or legal aid 1-800-582-2682.
We also do not handle
If you need assistance in these areas please contact:
We do not communicate with your family or loved ones for you. The communications between yourself and your public defender are confidential. We will not talk to anyone about your case. If you wish your family or loved ones to know more about your case it is up to you to inform them.
First, you need to fill out an Affidavit of Indigency or Application form. The Judge or Magistrate has informed you they will appoint the public defender to your case subject to meeting the income and asset guidelines. If you do not complete the application process there is no way of knowing if you qualify and you will not have a public defender to represent you. To get an Affidavit of Indigency form please go to the bottom of the page and download one or stop by our office.
Second, you need to provide us with your court papers. If you do not we will not know when your next court date is or the nature of the hearing. If you do not provide this paperwork you may find you do not have a public defender present.
Third, make an appointment to meet with your public defender if you would like to discuss your case before your next court hearing. Our attorneys have quite a few cases and are constantly out of the office in court representing other clients. You cannot expect to just drop in and get a meeting with your public defender. If you are aware of potential witnesses who possess information regarding your case who you feel might be of help to you and your defense, be prepared to provide the names, addresses and telephone numbers of such persons. Your lawyer will need to contact them in advance of any trial date to discuss with them their anticipated testimony.
Fourth, do not discuss your case with anyone. This would most definitely include any law enforcement officer or member of the prosecution staff. If you are confined in jail, do not discuss your case with fellow inmates as it is not unusual for the police and prosecution to employ informants who could end up testifying against you. Have no communication with the court and judge assigned to your case. This includes communications in written form and by letter. It is always best to allow any communication regarding you or your case to come through your attorney.
Finally, Please be on time. Tardiness reflects badly upon you with the court and in some instances could result in your bond being revoked. If your bond is revoked you may well be arrested and held in the county jail until your case is finished. In the event you are ill or have other problems affecting your ability to come to court, you must contact your attorney as soon as possible to see whether your case can be postponed and continued to another date, Don’t assume your lawyer will be able to have your case rescheduled to a new date simply because you have called in asking for a postponement. Understand that most judges require doctors excuses and/or some form of proof to substantiate a request for a postponement of your court date. Last minute calls regarding sudden illness, car trouble and lack of transportation usually result in a warrant being issued for your arrest.
Assistant Public Defenders have many resources available to them to assist them in conducting your defense. Be aware, however, the best assistance any criminal defense attorney can have is a cooperative, concerned and responsible client.