Public Defenders Office

By the authority of the Berrien County Board of Commissioners, the Public Defender Office was created by Resolution Number C1610291 dated October 13, 2016. The office has been staffed and operational since January 1, 2017.

The office is staffed by a team of Public Defenders, as well as a roster of independent conflict panel defense attorneys committed to the Standards for Indigent Defense as provided by the Michigan Indigent Defense Commission.

Our interdisciplinary team of professionals adhere to the holistic defense model, providing not only the highest quality representation for our clients as they face criminal charges, but also seeking to obtain the best possible outcomes for clients by providing social support and connecting clients with local social support services.

Public Defenders

Paul Jancha Jr., Chief Public Defender

Jolene Weiner-Vatter, Chief Assistant Public Defender


Karina Bihar, Assistant Public Defender

Carri Briseno, Assistant Public Defender

Erika Damstetter, Assistant Public Defender

Jennifer Fields, Assistant Public Defender

Kaitlin Locke, Assistant Public Defender

Stephanie Low, Assistant Public Defender

Kevin Mackin, Assistant Public Defender

Alexandria Miller, Assistant Public Defender

Christopher Page, Assistant Public Defender

Scott Sanford, Assistant Public Defender

Robert Schlacks, Assistant Public Defender

Peter Schlemmer, Assistant Public Defender

Donald Teichman, Assistant Public Defender

Paul Toman, Assistant Public Defender

Shayne Williams, Assistant Public Defender


Supporting Staff

Don Trail, Chief Investigator

Max Baum, Investigator

Katie Sircher, Investigator

 

Denise Lane, Social Worker

 

Lynne Christiano, Office Supervisor

Alauna Scales, Legal Assistant

Teresa Stevens, Legal Assistant


County of Berrien Seal