Ruling Ordering Evidentiary Hearing on Whether Defendant's Confession to Prison Psychiatrist Was Involuntary Because He Believed Statements Were Protected by Confidentiality Agreement Not Disturbed

Beaty v. Stewart, 303 F.3d 975 (9th Cir. 2002), cert. denied, Stewart v. Beaty, 123 S. Ct. 2073 (2003); 71(44) U.S. Law Week 3715 (May 20, 2003)

The Supreme Court declined to review a decision by the Ninth Circuit that permitted a criminal defendant to obtain a new hearing on whether his confession had been involuntary under the Fifth Amendment.  The defendant had been convicted of murder partly on the strength of a prison psychiatrist's testimony regarding a confession the defendant made to him after a group therapy session.  The Ninth Circuit held the defendant was entitled to a hearing on whether he reasonably believed his statements to the psychiatrist were protected by a confidentiality agreement he had signed that promised that "all group communication" would be kept confidential...

Found in DMHL Volume 23 Issue 1