Adams, Dale E.

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Address: 308 East 8th Street, Little Rock, AR 72202
Lawyer Firm: Montgomery, Adams & Wyatt, PLC
Phone: 501-377-9568
Fax: 501-375-7943

Areas of Practice Criminal Defense, Litigation

Dale E. Adams was born and reared in rural Kansas with a strong work ethic instilled early in life. He worked his way through college and law school, graduating with honors, receiving a B.A. in political science from the Kansas State College of Pittsburg, in Pittsburg, Kansas. He completed the four-year curriculum in three years. Upon graduation, he enrolled in the graduate program at Kansas State College in Pittsburg and received an M.S. in political science in 1970. Following graduation, he continued his education and was accepted into the Public Administration graduate program at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, Arkansas. Upon completion of his classroom work, he began working at in the Arkansas Judicial Department in what is now known as the Administrative Office of the Courts in 1972 as an administrative assistant. He served in several different positions within the office including directing judicial education programs. He received his M.P.A. in 1975 following completion of his Master’s thesis.

In 1972, while still employed with the Arkansas Judicial Department, he enrolled in law school. In 1975, he began work with the Arkansas Commission on Crime and Law Enforcement as a court planning specialist. The Arkansas Commission on Crime and Law Enforcement was an agency which administered federal Law Enforcement Administration Assistance grants to state criminal justice agencies. As court planner, he was in charge of all grants to the judges, prosecutors and public defenders programs in the state.

He graduated from law school in 1976 and passed the Arkansas Bar Exam in February 1977. He was admitted to practice law in the state of Arkansas in 1977.

In August of 1978, he began work as a deputy prosecuting attorney for the Sixth Judicial District of Arkansas serving Pulaski and Perry counties. He later became division chief for the Fourth Division and was the trial chief for the office. During this time, part of his duties included being the deputy prosecuting attorney for Perry County, Arkansas.In June of 1989, he left the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office and began private practice with the firm of Wallace & Hamner. In August 1996, he joined with Orin Eddy Montgomery and James W. Wyatt to form the law firm of Montgomery, Adams & Wyatt, PLC, where he remains at the present time. Dale’s Martindale-Hubbell peer rating* is "BV."

His practice is entirely in criminal defense representing clients in both state and federal courts on charges ranging from traffic violations to capital felony murder and post-conviction appeals. He has been certified as Lead Counsel by the Arkansas Public Defenders’ Commission. He has tried over a dozen capital murder trials in which the death penalty was sought, including one federal death penalty case, and has represented clients charged with capital murder in over 30 cases. He has also represented numerous clients in post-conviction appeals and has been successful in setting aside death sentences in four cases: Sanford v. State, 342 Ark. 22 (2000); Brunson v. State, 349 Ark. 300 (2002);Fudge v. State, 341 Ark. 759; (2005); and Miller v. State, 2010 Ark. 1 (2010). Recently, in a post-conviction proceeding, State of Arkansas v. Cantrell, he was successful in lowering a sentence of 145 years to approximately 4.5 years, as time served. He is also part of a team of attorneys who have successfully challenged the Arkansas lethal injection statute in the case of Hobbs v. Jones, 2012 Ark. 293 (2012).

Dale Adams has been involved with the Arkansas criminal justice in some capacity since 1973. His interest in the criminal justice system began in high school after doing a senior research paper on Rochin v. California, 342 U.S. 165 (1952), a case overturned on the violation of due process based on the state forcibly pumping the defendant’s stomach to obtain narcotics that he swallowed. The interest continued through college and graduate school. The Masters of Public Administration Program had a sub-emphasis for judicial administration and he interned with the Arkansas judicial department in 1971 while a student enrolled in the Public Administration graduate program.

He has been a member of the criminal justice CJA panel with the Arkansas federal courts since 1989, and has represented clients in both the Eastern and Western Districts of Arkansas.

*AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™ fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

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