Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers

WACDL was formed to improve the quality and administration of justice.  WACDL has close to 1000 members – private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, and related professionals committed to preserving fairness and promoting a rational and humane criminal justice system.

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News & Information

Fines a poor way to fund state's courts
Everett Herald Editorial: For most of us another $12 for a speeding ticket is only added incentive to obey the rules of the road. But the effect of the order for many lower-income state residents amounts to fining Peter to defend Paul.
State v. Peeler (No. 90068-0)
On May 5, 2015, the Washington State Supreme Court issued its ruling in State v. Peeler, a case where WACDL had filed an amicus brief.
Conservative Nebraska Looks at Abolishing Death Penalty
AP: There's not a lot of sympathy for the 11 men on death row in Nebraska, but spurred by frustration about the growing difficulty and cost of carrying out executions, lawmakers are considering eliminating the death penalty.
WACDL Board and Officer Elections
New officers and board members will begin their terms on June 12, 2015.
Memorial Service for Justice Robert F. Utter on April 29
The Washington Supreme Court will hold a memorial service for former Washington Supreme Court Justice Robert F. Utter at the Temple of Justice on Wednesday, April 29th at 9:00 a.m.
Defendant challenges use of secret ‘Stingray’ cell device
News Tribune: A Tacoma man was prepared to mount what is thought to be the first legal challenge against Pierce County law enforcement’s use of a controversial secret surveillance tool, but his effort was rendered moot last week when he reached a tentative plea bargain agreement with prosecutors.
Prosecutorial overkill on Mark Lindquist’s watch?
News Tribune editorial: The Pierce County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office has been much in the news since Mark Lindquist was elected to run it in 2010. Not all the news has been reassuring.
Fix the Flaws in Forensic Science
New York Times: THE F.B.I. stunned the legal community on Monday with its acknowledgment that testimony by its forensic scientists about hair identification was scientifically indefensible in nearly every one of more than 250 cases reviewed.
The Death Penalty Deserves the Death Penalty
The New Yorker: At the end of this month, the Supreme Court will reckon with execution by lethal injection in Glossip v. Gross, the case of Oklahoma death-row inmates who are challenging the three-drug protocol that the state has chosen to carry out death sentences.
John Doe A., et al. v. WA. State Patrol (No. 90413-8)
WACDL filed an amicus brief in this case on April 24, 2015.
Six cases of ‘prosecutorial misconduct’
News Tribune: Since 2013, the Washington State Court of Appeals and the state Supreme Court have ordered new trials for defendants in six cases where Pierce County deputy prosecutors were found to have committed reversible error — called “prosecutorial misconduct.” Here are snapshots of each of those cases.
Pierce County prosecutors lead state in cases overturned because of their ‘flagrant’ actions
News Tribune: It’s rare in the state of Washington for so-called “prosecutorial misconduct” to lead to the reversal of someone’s criminal conviction. A prosecutor’s mistake in those instances must be so “flagrant and ill-intentioned” that nothing short of a new trial would correct it. What’s not unusual is for one of those instances to come from Pierce County.
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Upcoming Events
Federal Bar: Immigration Issues Jun 10, 2015 12:00 PM - 01:30 PM — 19th floor conference room at USDC 700 Stewart Street, Seattle
2015 Annual Conference Jun 11, 2015 - Jun 13, 2015 — Campbell's Resort on Lake Chelan
WACDL Fall 2015 CLE Oct 02, 2015 08:30 AM - 05:00 PM — Washington State Convention Center, Seattle
WACDL Spring 2016 CLE Mar 18, 2016 08:30 AM - 05:00 PM — Washington State Convention Center, Seattle
2016 Annual Conference Jun 09, 2016 - Jun 11, 2016 — Chelan, Washington