By: Undisputed Legal/Court Service Department
A. When Right Attaches
1. The Sixth Amendment provides that “in all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right . . . to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.”
a. State constitution, Const. art. I, § 22, is co-extensive with the Sixth Amendment. See generally State v. Medlock, 86 Wn. App. 89, 97-935 P.2d 693, review denied, 133 Wn.2d 1012 (1997).
2. The Sixth Amendment right to counsel does not attach until a prosecution is commenced, that is, at or after the initiation of adversary judicial criminal proceedings, whether by way of formal charge, preliminary hearing, indictment, information, or arraignment. McNeil v. Wisconsin, 501 U.S. 171, 175, 115 L. Ed. 2d 158, 111 S. Ct. 2204 (1991).
a. A defendant’s custodial status is irrelevant to the determination of whether the Sixth Amendment right to counsel has attached.