Chief Public Defender Announces Retirement

Dear Buncombe County Bar Members:

It is with great sadness that I am announcing that I am retiring as Chief Public Defender for Buncombe County effective at the end of September, 2020.  My parents are struggling with health and related issues. I need to focus my time and energy on them.

It has been a pleasure and an honor to work in the Buncombe County Public Defender’s Office.   I am thankful that Robert Hufstader hired me as an Assistant Public Defender in April of 1996 and that Judge Dennis Winner first appointed me to lead the Office in January of 2008 when Mr. Hufstader retired.

Members of the local Bar have always been very supportive of our Public Defender Office.  I regret that I cannot list everyone who has assisted in our obtaining our goal of quality public defense. It could not have occurred without the effort of everyone.

The team members of the Buncombe Public Defender Office are passionate about their work and should be proud of all the good work they do every day.

I look forward to being able to spend more time with my parents and to what the future brings. I will always be available to answers questions or lend assistance after my retirement. My cell is 828-279-2539.

LeAnn Melton
Chief Public Defender for the 28th Judicial District