CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Friday, May 13, 2005

Attorney Suspended For Convincing Defendant To Confess

San Fransisco attorney Joshua Dale was suspended from the bar for four months for convincing a defendant charged with arson to confess to him.  Dale was representing the landlord of the building that was damaged in the arson, and wanted to obtain a confession from the defendant in order to use it in his client's civil suit against its insurance company.  Dale visited the uneducated defendant in prison and cajoled the desired confession from him.  The confession occurred while the defendant was awaiting an appellate decision as to whether his earlier confession to the police should have been admitted at trial.  Dale promised the defendant that the confession would only be used in the civil case, and would not hurt his chances of obtaining a new trial on appeal.  Dale also ignored requests from the defendant's criminal attorney to stay away from his client.  Story . . .  [Mark Godsey]

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