FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DECEMBER 11, 2020
JENNIFER BUKOWSKY DONATES $300,000 TO PROVIDE ATTORNEYS FOR THE POOR IN BOONE COUNTY CRIMINAL CASES
Jennifer Bukowsky, attorney and founder of Bukowsky Law Firm, LLC, has donated $300,000 to provide attorneys for the poor in Boone County. Bukowsky’s donation to Boone County will allow attorneys to be assigned in almost five hundred (500) pending criminal cases. The defendants in those cases have been found to be eligible for legal representation at the state’s expense, but placed on a waitlist by the Missouri State Public Defender (MSPD). MSPD, the state entity authorized to provide representation to the poor accused of state crimes, has been unable to provide attorneys for the defendants on waitlist cases because of a case overload.
Currently, there are over 650 cases pending on the Boone County waitlist and approximately 2,000 cases pending on waitlists in twenty-three other Missouri counties. Some defendants on the Boone County waitlist have waited for an attorney since June, 2018, some of whom have appeared in court unrepresented for bond hearings and status conferences. Bukowsky’s donation will allow the defendants to be assigned an attorney who will represent them in their criminal case. Bukowsky, a criminal defense attorney, has herself handled over 1,400 criminal cases in the course of her career, including as an Assistant Public Defender in the MSPD Columbia Trial Office.
MSPD Director, Mary Fox, expressed her gratitude for the donation. “This donation will provide these eligible applicants for legal services with the lawyer to which they are constitutionally entitled. I am grateful for this generous donation from Jennifer. As a former public defender Jennifer understands the importance of criminal defendants not only having an attorney, but having an attorney who has the necessary time to provide each client competent representation. This donation will assist these applicants, as well as the current clients of MSPD attorneys in Boone County.”
“This Court fervently desires defendants who are indigent and accused of a crime to be represented by counsel,” said 13TH Judicial Circuit Presiding Judge Kevin Crane. “Locally we have been trying alternative methods to ensure the defendants on the waitlist have access to an attorney. We are grateful for Ms. Bukowsky’s generous donation to pay for counsel for these defendants.”
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
MARY FOX, MSPD DIRECTOR, AT 573-777-9977, EXT 201
MARY EPPING, 13TH CIRCUIT COURT ADMINISTRATOR, AT 573-886-4058