The South Carolina Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers

 The South Carolina Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers was founded in 1992. Members of the organization practice criminal defense in both federal and state court and include private attorneys and public defenders. The organization advocates for the profession and sponsors Continuing Legal Education (CLE) seminars throughout the year.

Membership in SCACDL is open to South Carolina criminal defense attorneys who are actively engaged in representing individuals charged with criminal offenses in either state or federal court. Associate membership is open to individuals that support criminal defense attorneys such as paralegals, investigators and expert witnesses. Prosecutors and judges are not eligible to join or remain in SCACDL.

To join, the applicant must certify that he or she supports the purpose the purposes of the South Carolina Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, is committed to the fair administration of criminal justice and the defense of individuals accused of crime. Sustaining members and benefactor members receive special recognition.

Benefits of Membership in SCACDL

The benefits of joining the South Carolina Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers include:

  • Priority Registration For Continuing Legal Education (CLE) seminars and classes;
  • Access to a motion and brief bank; and
  • Access to a Listserv that allows members to ask questions and share information with other members;

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Elizabeth Franklin-Best is a partner in the law firm of Blume Norris & Franklin-Best LLC, focusing almost exclusively on capital litigation. Before that, she was an Appellate Defender at the South Carolina Commission on Indigent Defense. She also worked as an associate for Jack Swerling, and as an assistant public defender with the Richland County Public Defender’s Office. She was awarded Lawyer of the Year by the Public Defender Association in 2010.

Shaun Kent is the founding partner of the Kent Law Firm, LLC, in Manning, SC. A 2000 graduate of the Thomas M. Cooley Law School, Mr. Kent has tried hundreds of cases. A former Prosecutor for the 9th Judicial Circuit and a Public Defender for the 2nd Judicial Circuit, Mr. Kent’s practice currently focuses primarily on criminal defense.

E. Charles Grose, Jr. served as Chief Public defender for thirteen years, and then opened a law firm in 2012. His practice is primarily General Sessions Court. He also handles appeals before the South Carolina Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals. His practice also includes civil rights litigation. As the 2014-2015 Chair of the Criminal Law Section Council, he planned and moderated the 2015 Criminal Law Update as part of the annual South Carolina Bar Convention. He currently chairs the Board of Directors South Carolina Death Penalty Resource & Defense Center.

Diedreich von Lehe is a native of Charleston, South Carolina. He is a graduate of The Citadel (1983) and the University of South Carolina School of Law (1986) and has served as a Marine Corps fighter pilot, staff attorney with the Charleston County Public Defender’s Office, and part-time municipal court prosecutor. Since 1996, he has been a sole practitioner and concentrates in criminal defense and personal injury cases. Diedreich holds an AV rating and has made CLE presentations in South Carolina, Texas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Indiana, California, and Nevada.

Ed Mallett is a past President of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and the Texas and the Harris County Criminal Defense Lawyer Associations. He has been Board Certified as a criminal lawyer for over 30 years. He received his B.A. from Dartmouth College, attended the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago, and received his law degree from the University of Texas. He is listed in The Best Lawyers in America, the Texas Monthly “Super Lawyers,” and the “Best Lawyers in Houston.”

Dawn McQuiston is currently a psychology professor at Wofford College after having served on the faculty at Arizona State University for ten years. Her work focuses on the intersection of psychology and law, specifically involving the reliability of eyewitness testimony, jurors’ evaluation of expert evidence, and extra-legal factors in courtroom decision-making. She has published numerous scholarly articles, and given research presentations at academic and legal conferences. Her research has been funded by the National Institute of Justice. Dr. McQuiston provides consultation and expert testimony concerning memory, perceptual processes, information processing, and recall as these relate to disputed eyewitness evidence.

Chelsea McNeill, a 2010 graduate of the Charleston School of Law, began her legal career as a Law Clerk and later a Volunteer Attorney with the Charleston County Public Defender’s Office. In 2011, she joined the 4th Circuit Public Defender’s Office, then in 2012, she accepted a position in the 8th Judicial Circuit. Prior to becoming a lawyer, Chelsea worked as a Clinical Addictions Counselor at the Charleston Center in Charleston, SC, where she worked at the Charleston County Detention Center in the Persons Incarcerated Entering Recovery Program (P.I.E.R.), counseling and educating inmates who suffer from addiction to substances. Chelsea’s trial practice is concentrated in major felonies. She is a member of NACDL and SCACDL.

Judge William H. “Billy” Murphy, Jr. is the founder and a senior partner of Murphy, Falcon & Murphy in Baltimore. With more than 42 years of practice, Judge Murphy has been successful in over 90% of his state court cases and over 40% of his federal cases–4 times higher than the national average of 9%. The Baltimore Sun has profiled him as one of the top 5 lawyers in the state and wrote that he is recognized by his peers as “extraordinarily gifted” and “one of the best defense attorneys of his time.”


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Seminar Refund Policy

The Executive Director shall be responsible for processing refunds of fees paid for seminars if a cancellation occurs after payment is made. If the Executive Director is notified of the cancellation prior to the week of the seminar, a full refund of paid fees will be made. If the Executive Director is notified of the cancellation during the week of the seminar, but prior to the day of the seminar, a refund of 50% of the paid fees shall be made. If the Executive Director is notified of the cancellation on the day of the seminar, or is not notified and the participant does not attend, then no refund shall be made. The Executive Director must be notified in writing or via mail of any cancellation.

Member Login

If you do not know your password, you can reset it by following these instructions:

  1. Click on the link "Forgot your password?"
  2. Enter the email address for your account.
  3. A verification code will be sent to you.
  4. Once you have received the verification code, you will be able to choose a new password for your account.

If you did not create the account yourself, your User Name is your email address.

If you have trouble logging in or are experiencing other technical issues, contact support at techsupport@scacdl.org.




Contact Info

South Carolina Association Of Criminal Defense Lawyers
Kitty Sutton
Executive Director
PO Box 8353
Columbia, SC 29202

1122 Lady Street, Suite 1102
Columbia, SC 29201 MAP