1. Write an essay on (or discuss) the proper role of defense attorneys regarding their clients. Should attorneys pursue the wishes of their clients even if they think it is not in the clients’ best interest? What if it would hurt a third party (but not be illegal)?
Do you think that attorneys should maintain confidentiality if their clients are involved in ongoing criminal activity that is not inherently dangerous?
2. Write an essay on (or discuss) what your decision would be if you were on a disciplinary committee evaluating the following case: A prosecutor was working with police in a standoff between a triple murderer and police. When the murderer demanded to talk to a public defender, the police did not want to have a public defender get involved, so the prosecutor pretended to be one. He spoke with the suspect on the telephone and lied about his name and being a public defender.
The man then surrendered to police. The prosecutor was sanctioned by the state bar for misrepresentation and was put on probation and required to take twenty hours of continuing legal education in ethics, pass the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination, and be supervised by another attorney (Tarnoff, 2001). In your essay,
describe what you think should have occurred, and why.
3. Write an essay on (or discuss) the legality/
ethics of the following actions of a prosecutor:
• Announcing a suspect of a drive-by shooting to the media so the offender is in danger from the rival gang members,
and then offering protective custody only if the man will plead guilty.
• Authorizing the arrest of a ten-year-old boy who confessed to a crime, even though there was no serious possibility
that he was guilty, in order to pressure a relative to confess.
• Authorizing the arrest of one brother for drugs, even though the prosecutor knows the charge would be thrown out
(but the young man would lose a scholarship to college), in order to have leverage so that he would give evidence
against his brother.
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