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Duped Supes 

Editor:

Patrik Griego has sued Humboldt County over the hiring of David Marcus as Chief Public Defender. A visiting judge is scheduled to hear the county's motion to dismiss the suit on June 30 ("An Artificial Legal Controversy," May 25).  The county claims that the suit is "frivolous and baseless" and that the dispute is "purely political." The suit is not frivolous because it concerns the competence of the public defenders, and their ability to advocate for the most vulnerable citizens of the county. The suit is not political, because it is based on the questionable legal qualifications of David Marcus as public defender.

But the county got it half right when it stated that the suit is "promulgated by those fuming about the merits" of Marcus's appointment. Of course we're fuming! But we are fuming about the lack of merits of his appointment. 

Since Marcus's appointment in February, he has been sharply criticized by citizens, lawyers and by both deputy public defenders and their staff, who have written publicly against him, even at the risk of losing their jobs. He has dodged interviews and can't even defend himself, much less anyone else.

The Supes were duped. Hiring David Marcus as chief public defender was a mistake. As his hiring enters the court system, our tax dollars will be used to defend him. He is not worth defending.

Marilyn Andrews, Arcata

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