Public Defender



The Public Defender’s Office was established in 2000 and is dedicated to the defense of tribal members charged with criminal offenses in tribal, state and federal court. The caseload ranges from petty offenses to the defense of complex felony prosecutions. The Public Defender’s Office also represents civil respondents in matters involving juvenile delinquency, involuntary commitment, abuse and neglect, and tribal housing.

Mission Statement

At the Public Defender’s Office, we are dedicated to providing legal services of the highest quality, regardless of income. We zealously defend our clients’ interests, limited only by the facts, the law, and the rules of professional responsibility. Through innovative and compassionate advocacy, our clients get the services they need and the justice they deserve.


Evelyn J. Akipa, Tribal Court Advocate: Evelyn has been with the Public Defender’s Office sine 2003. She has attended a number of trainings at the National Institute for Trial Advocacy and is a talented and dedicated lay advocate.


The Public Defender’s Office is located on Max Street in the Crawfordsville housing development, across from the Sisseton-Wahpeton College. Other relevant contact information is as follows:

SWO Public Defender’s Office Location:
12554 BIA HWY 711, Agency Village, SD 57262
Mailing Address:

PO Box 746, Agency Village, SD 57262