Hunter Parnell


The Public Defenseless Podcast uncovers the rot at the heart of our criminal justice system and what you can do about it. On every episode, we speak with Public Defenders, other stakeholders in the criminal justice system, or advocates for criminal justice initiatives to demonstrate how every aspect of the criminal justice system works in concert to produce better outcomes for our communities. Far too often, we fail to understand the vital role that Public Defenders play in promoting safer, healthier communities with their zealous advocacy both in and out of the courtroom. I hope to empower each and every one of my listeners with the knowledge and resources to go out and contribute to shape the future of Public Defense reform!

Originally from Broomfield Colorado, I attended the United States Air Force Academy. While at USAFA, I played baseball and was a member of the United States Air Force Parachute Demonstration team, the Wings of Blue. All the while, I spent two years overseeing the implementation and operation of the cadet Honor Code for 1,000 cadets in my Junior and Senior years. In the spring of 2018, I graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in Legal Studies after competing on the Legal Studies Nationally Ranked Moot Court Team.

My whole life, I saw firsthand how the criminal justice system treated people as cases to be dealt with quickly instead of as human beings with unique needs. The passion and interest in our justice system was ever present because of my upbringing, but following the killing of George Floyd, I wanted to help improve our justice system in some fashion but did not know where to start. While I realized that people of all walks of life, of all political backgrounds care about justice and care about fairness, people were not taking action because they simply did not know where to start. So, I took the first step towards trying to solve any problem— try to understand it. After a year plus of research and writing, I realized sharing this information, speaking with stakeholders, and helping people join me in my quests for reform was what I wanted to do, and thus, Public Defenseless was born.