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1910

First Lawyer Assigned to Criminal Cases

The founders of The Legal Aid Society expressed a desire to assist the poor in criminal matters as early as 1879. A passage from our third annual report reveals a concern for those who had

fallen into the hands of the police through ignorance of the law.

Accused criminals were often imprisoned for weeks without a hearing. Their poverty and ignorance of the language prevented them from seeking aid or judicial protection.

For the first time, we assigned a lawyer to the Essex Market Police Court to handle criminal cases. That court was selected because of the extreme poverty on the lower east side.

Article in the Tribune about Loan Sharks and Leonard McGee, a LAS Attorney
Article in the Tribune about Loan Sharks and Leonard McGee, a LAS Attorney 1911