CRIMINAL PROCEDURE, ATTORNEYS – After a fatal car accident, the widow gave her mother-in-law keys to her house in order to feed her cats. The widow’s brother-in-law then used the keys to steal coins and an antique ring from the widow’s house. At trial, the judge urged the brother-in-law to avoid taking the stand, thus violating his attorney-client relationship. People v. Peden
At the beginning of the trial, defendant agreed with counsel’s strategy that defendant should testify that he had entered the widow’s home without any intention to commit theft. But after the trial court’s repeated discussions with defense counsel, and warnings of the ramifications of defendant’s potential testimony, defendant changed his mind. Reversed.