Professor of Law and Dean Emeritus
Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law
Lawrence W. Inlow Hall,
530 W. New York Street
Indianapolis, IN 46202-3225
Phone: (317) 274-8241
LL.B., 1961, University of Illinois
LL.M., 1964, Georgetown University
Criminal law, criminal procedure, professional responsibility
Professor Lefstein served as dean of the law school from January 1, 1988 until June 30, 2002. During his tenure, he enhanced financial support for faculty research and scholarship and promoted the expansion of a number of the school’s activities, including international programs, clinics, internships, and pro bono opportunities for students. He also spearheaded the fundraising and planning for the school’s $37 million building, Lawrence W. Inlow Hall, which was dedicated in 2001.
Prior to becoming the law school’s dean, Professor Lefstein was for 12 years a faculty member at the University of North Carolina School of Law in Chapel Hill. He also has held visiting or adjunct appointments at the law schools of Duke, Northwestern, and Georgetown. His other positions have included service as director of the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia, an Assistant United States Attorney in D.C., and as a staff member of the Office of the Deputy Attorney General of the U.S. Department of Justice. Earlier in his career, he was in private practice in a law firm and directed a large-scale Ford Foundation research project in which legal representation was furnished to juveniles in three metropolitan cities.
At the University of Illinois College of Law, he was a member of the law review and elected to Order of the Coif. He earned the LL.M. degree from Georgetown University Law Center as a member of the E. Barrett Prettyman Fellowship Program in Trial Advocacy.
His professional activities have included serving as Chairman of the American Bar Association Section of Criminal Justice and as Reporter for the Second Edition of ABA Criminal Justice Standards Relating to The Prosecution Function and The Defense Function, Providing Defenses Services, and Pleas of Guilty. Professor Lefstein also has served as Chairman of the ABA Committee on Criminal Justice Standards.
His principal publications are in the areas of indigent defense, criminal justice, and professional responsibility. In 2011, the ABA published his most recent book, Securing Reasonable Caseloads: Ethics and Law in Indigent Defense. In addition, he played a major role as Co-Reporter in writing Justice Denied: America’s Continuing Neglect of Our Constitutional Right to Counsel, published by the Constitution Project in 2009. He also is the author of Criminal Defense Services for the Poor, published by the ABA in 1982. During the 1990’s, Professor Lefstein was chief counsel for the Subcommittee on Federal Death Penalty Cases, and in this capacity directed the preparation of Federal Death Penalty Cases: Recommendations Concerning the Cost and Quality of Defense Representation, which was approved by the Judicial Conference of the United States. In addition, he often testifies in court proceedings as an expert witness on subjects such as professional ethics and defense representation in criminal cases.
During 2007, Professor Lefstein completed 17 years as chairman of the Indiana Public Defender Commission, a position to which two Indiana governors had appointed him. He also served nine years as chair of the ABA’s Indigent Defense Advisory Group, which oversees the Association’s efforts nationwide to strengthen legal services for the poor in criminal cases.
Professor Lefstein was honored in 2001 as a Distinguished Graduate of the University of Illinois College of Law. In 2002, upon his retirement as dean, Professor Lefstein received the Sagamore of the Wabash Award from Indiana Governor Frank O’Bannon. For 2005, Professor Lefstein received The Champion of Indigent Defense Award from the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.
Books and Chapters
Securing Reasonable Caseloads: Ethics and Law in Public Defense (American Bar Association 2011) (available at www.indigentdefense.org)
Justice Denied: America's Continuing Neglect of Our Constitutional Right to Counsel, Report of the National Right to Counsel Committee, (The Constitution Project 2009) (Co-Reporter)
ABA Eight Guidelines of Public Defense Related to Excessive Workloads (2009) (Reporter)
Gideon’s Broken Promise: America’s Continuing Quest for Equal Justice, Report of the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Legal Aid and Indigent Defendants (2005)(co-author)
Federal Death Penalty Cases: Recommendations Concerning the Cost and Quality of Defense Representation, Report of the Subcommittee on Federal Death Penalty Cases of the Committee on Defense Services of the Judicial Conference of the United States (1998) (Contributing author and editor)
Criminal Defense Services for the Poor: Methods and Programs for Providing Legal Representation and the Need for Adequate Financing, American Bar Association (1982)
"The Prosecution Function," Chapter Three, American Bar Association Standards for Criminal Justice (2d ed., Little, Brown & Co., 1980) (Reporter)
"The Defense Function," Chapter Four, American Bar Association Standards for Criminal Justice (2d ed., Little, Brown & Co., 1980) (Reporter)
"Providing Defense Services," Chapter Five, American Bar Association Standards for Criminal Justice (2d ed., Little, Brown & Co., 1980) (Reporter)
"Pleas of Guilty," Chapter Fourteen, American Bar Association Standards for Criminal Justice (2d ed., Little, Brown & Co., 1980)(Reporter)
1986 Supplements to Chapters Three, Four, Five and Fourteen, American Bar Association Standards for Criminal Justice (2d ed., Little, Brown & Co., 1980)
1982 Supplements to Chapters Three, Four, Five and Fourteen, American Bar Association Standards for Criminal Justice (2d ed., Little, Brown & Co., 1980)
The Center for Defense Services: A Draft Discussion Proposal for the Establishment of a Nonprofit Corporation to Strengthen Indigent Defense Services, co‑authored with G. Bellow, S. Portman and others, American Bar Association (1978) (Co-Author)
Law Review and Journal Articles
"Excessive Public Defense Workloads: Are ABA Standards for Criminal Justice Adequate?" 38 Hastings Const. L. Q. 949 (2011)
Remarks at National Public Defense Symposium, University of Tennessee College of Law, 7 Tenn, J. Law & Pol. 43 (2010)
"Commentary on Indigent Defense," 75 Mo. L. Rev. 793 (2010)
“A Broken Indigent Defense System,” 36 Human Rights 11 (Spring 2009)
“The Movement Towards Indigent Defense Reform: Louisiana and the Nation,” 9 Loy. J. Pub. Int. Law 125
"Restraining Excessive Defender Caseloads: The ABA Ethics Committee Requires Action," The Champion, 10-22 (December 2006) (co-author with G. Vagenas)
“Criminal Defense Representation in England and the United States,” in International Legal Aid Group Conference: Legal Aid in the Global Area 467
“In Search of Gideon’s Promise: Lessons from England and the Need for Federal Help,” 55 Hastings L. J. 835 (2004).
“Reflections of a Long-Serving Dean,” 34 U. Tol. L. Rev. 109 (2002)
"Reform of Defense Representation in Capital Cases: The Indiana Experience and Its Implications for the Nation," 29 Ind. L. Rev. 495 (1996)
"Client Perjury in Criminal Cases: Still in Search of an Answer," 1 Geo. J. L. Ethics 521 (1988); reprinted in 24 Trial Magazine 30 (September 1988)
"Legal Ethics: Confidentiality and the Fugitive Client," 1 Criminal Justice 16 (fall 1986)
"Incriminating Physical Evidence, The Defense Attorney's Dilemma, and the Need for Rules," 64 N.C.L. Rev. 897 (1986); reprinted in Criminal Law Review, (Clark Boardman, 1987)
"Attorney Fee Forfeiture: A Threat to the Adversary System," Nat'l L. J., page 35, August 18, 1986
"Legal Ethics: Reflections on the Client Perjury Dilemma," 1 Criminal Justice 27 (summer 1986)
Keynote Address: "Effective Assistance of Counsel for the Indigent Defendant: Has the Promise Been Fulfilled?" 14 N.Y.U. Rev. Law & Soc. Change 5 (1986)
"Legal Ethics," 1 Criminal Justice 20 (spring 1986)
"Financing the Right to Counsel: A National Perspective," 19 Loy. L.A. L. Rev. 391 (1985)
Book Review, "Dershowitz: The Best Defense," 56 Temp. L. Q. 1101 (1983)
"Plea Bargaining and the Trial Judge, The New ABA Standards, And the Need to Control Judicial Discretion, "590 N.C.L.Rev.477 (1981); reprinted in Criminal Law Review, (Clark Boardman, 1981)
"Implementing the Right to Counsel in State Criminal Cases," 65 A.B.A.J. 1084 (1980) (co‑authored with S. Portman)
The Criminal Defendant Who Proposes Perjury: Re‑Thinking the Defense Lawyer's Dilemma," 6 Hofstra L. Rev. 665 (1978); reprinted in Ethics and the Legal Profession (Prometheus Books, 1986); and Criminal Law Review, (Clark Boardman, 1979)
“Defense Counsel at Sentencing," published in Effective Criminal Trial Techniques, American Bar Association Section of Criminal Justice (1978)
"Experimental Research in the Law: Ethical and Practical Considerations," paper presented to Sociology of Law Section, American Sociological Association meeting, August 1967; reprinted in Katz, Experimentation with Human Beings 333 (1971)
"In Search of Juvenile Justice: Gault and its Implementation," 3 Law and Society Rev. 491 (1969); co‑authored with V. Stapleton and L. Teitelbaum; reprinted in P. Lerman, Delinquency and Social Policy, 206 (1970); and F. Faust and B. Brantingham, Juvenile Justice Philosophy: Readings, Cases and Comments 420 (1974)
"In the Wake of Gault," published in Course on Law and Poverty: The Minor, Ohio State Legal Services Association (1968)
"In Re Gault, Juvenile Courts and Lawyers," 53 A.B.A.J. 811 (1967)
"Medical Demonstrative Evidence in Illinois," Illinois Bar Journal, May 1964. (Annual Lincoln Award Winner ‑ Illinois Bar Journal Essay Contest)
"County Can Save Money with Public Defenders," Op Ed Article (Co-Authored with Prresident Cynthia Orr, President, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers), Houston Chronicle, September 24, 2009
Statement Submitted to Missouri Senate Appropriations Committee on behalf of Missouri State Public Defender System (January 2007)
Amicus Curiae Brief, Michael Johnson v. State of Indiana, Supreme Court of the United States, February 2005
“Capital Defense Representation,” 80 Ind. L. J. 38-40, 44-45 (2005) (publication of comments presented during a symposium at the Indiana University School of Law - Bloomington, September 2004)
Amicus Curiae Brief in Michael Johnson v. State of Indiana, Supreme Court of Indiana, April 2004
“Defense Vital for Fair System of Justice,” Op Ed Article, Indianapolis Star, January 24, 2004