Appellate Defense Counsel - Homicide Direct Appeals

You are here

Job location
Norman, OK
United States
Organization information
Organization name: 
Oklahoma Indigent Defense System
Street address: 
P.O. Box 926
Job type: 
Legal - Defender
Position Description: 

Homicide Direct Appeals Division
Norman, Oklahoma

Job Opening: Appellate Defense Counsel
Recruitment # 210914-UNCE-613

The Homicide Direct Appeals Division (HDA) of the Oklahoma Indigent Defense System is seeking applicants for an Appellate Defense Counsel position. HDA is appointed by state district courts in Oklahoma to represent indigent clients convicted of all forms of homicide, including capital murder, on direct appeal to the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals. HDA also represents death-sentenced clients on certiorari petitions to the United States Supreme Court and at remanded evidentiary hearings in the district courts as ordered by the Court of Criminal Appeals.

Attorney job duties include the management of all aspects of the direct appeal case including consulting with the client; reading and digesting the trial record; developing and implementing case theory and strategy; identifying legal issues; performing extensive research and analysis; drafting legal briefs and pleadings; devising and conducting extra-record investigations as necessary; identification, selection, and preparation of expert witnesses as necessary; and, when ordered, appearing at evidentiary hearings at the district court level or oral argument before the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals.


Applicants should possess a Juris Doctorate degree and active membership and good standing with the State Bar of Oklahoma or eligibility for admission by motion. No prior criminal appellate experience is required for this position although knowledge of criminal law, criminal procedure, constitutional law, and evidence is required. Applicants should possess a desire to work in public interest law and advocate on behalf of indigent clients. Applicants should have excellent research and writing skills, and the ability to argue effectively and persuasively in both written and oral form. Training and experience in the defense of capital cases and death penalty litigation is preferred. Experience in dealing with mental health issues is also desirable. Applicants with backgrounds in social work, social science, counseling, psychology, education, journalism, forensics, criminal investigation, or law enforcement are encouraged to apply.

Applicants must be highly motivated and well-organized with the ability to multi-task and manage time effectively. The ability to work as part of a team is required, as are exceptional communication and interpersonal skills. Applicants must be willing and able to travel throughout the State of Oklahoma and occasionally out of state.

To apply: 

Please send a letter of interest referencing Recruitment # 210914-UNCE-613, resume and writing sample no later than Tuesday, September 28, 2021, to:

Lisa Vegh, Personnel Officer
Oklahoma Indigent Defense System
P.O. Box 926
Norman, OK 73070-0926
[email protected]

OIDS is an Equal Opportunity Employer
Salary range: 
Salary for this position will be in accordance with agency salary scales and level of experience.
Submission deadline: 
Tuesday, September 28, 2021