FORT DODGE, Iowa — The Office of the State Public Defender is closing its Fort Dodge office.

The Des Moines Register reports that the office will close in late September, after losing two lawyers and the office supervisor. There are 18 public defender offices statewide.

Kurt Swaim, first assistant for the state public defender, says the closure will “promote operational effectiveness.” He says the Nevada (nuh-VAYE’-duh) office will handle some of the cases, and private attorneys will assume additional work.

Ryan Baldridge is first assistant Webster County attorney in Fort Dodge, and he says he’s uncertain whether there are enough private attorneys to handle court appointments for the county’s criminal cases.


Information from: The Des Moines Register, http://www.desmoinesregister.com

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