University of Washington Native American Law Center Public Defense Clinic (For Criminal Charges on the Tulalip Reservation Only)
The Tribal Court Public Defense Clinic at the University of Washington Native American Law Center provides Public Defense services in Tulalip Tribal Court. Under the supervision of Clinic Director Ron Whitener (Squaxin Island Tribe), law students work together in teams with Clinic Supervisors Molly Cohan and Brenda Williams representing tribal members charged with crimes by the Tulalip Tribes. Professor Whitener and Ms. Cohan and Ms. Williams are experienced attorneys with a great deal of knowledge in the areas of criminal and tribal law.
This service has been in place since 2002. Since that time, the Clinic has handled over 1300 cases at Tulalip. Only second or third year law students may work in the Clinic, they must pass the Tulalip Tribal Court bar exam before being admitted to practice, and they work closely with their supervisors. Funding for this service is supported primarily by charitable contributions from the Tulalip Tribes.
The Defense Clinic represents any Indian who has been charged with a crime by the Tulalip Tribes and whose household income qualifies under Tulalip law. If you are charged with a criminal offense in the Tulalip Tribal Court, you may apply to be screened ahead of time. You may also apply at the time of your first court date. Applications are available at Tribal Court. If you are eligible for Clinic representation, Clinic counsel will be appointed to represent you at your first Court hearing. If you are arrested and incarcerated prior to charging, you must appear before the judge at which time you may apply for counsel.
To contact the Clinic, you can call toll free at 1-866-550-2979. If no one answers, leave a message with a good time to call back. You may also call (206) 616-4201 or (206) 685-3917.
Download the the Defense Clinic Application