Ohio Death Row Exonorees Joe D’Ambrosio, Derrick Jamison, Kwame Ajamu, Dale Johnston, and Wiley Bridgeman Adoption of a rule directing that the trial judge is the appropriate authority for the appointment of experts for indigent defendants.
The rule should further provide that the decision pertaining to the appointment of experts shall be made, on the record, at one of the prescribed Pre-Trial Conferences.
Should the present process of appointment of indigent counsel by the judiciary continue, the main objective should always be to assure the best educationally experienced and qualified candidate, who is available (within the county or outside the county), and who is otherwise willing to take on the responsibilities associated with the case for an appropriate fee and accompanying expenses, is appointed.
The Joint Task Force believes that some of the recommendations above could be accomplished by the adoption of a separate Criminal Rule for Capital Cases.
The Joint Task Force recommends that such a rule be adopted and provide for the mandatory training of attorneys and judges (Recommendation 49), the selection and appointment of indigent counsel in capital cases (Recommendation 51), and the enforcement of the ABA Guidelines for the Appointment and Performance of Defense Counsel in Death Penalty Cases and the Supplementary Guidelines for the Mitigation Function of Defense Teams (Recommendations 11 and 12).