Drew Peterson’s lawyer can’t talk about what may have happened to Stacy Peterson. I’m Amy E. Feldman.

Drew Peterson was convicted of killing his third wife in 2012, but his fourth wife, Stacy, has been missing since 2007 and the lawyer now says he wants to reveal what he learned from his client about it. 

Here’s the problem: lawyers are bound by attorney-client privilege and cannot disclose information that would harm a client’s defense unless failure to do so is likely to result in imminent death or bodily harm. So if a client tells his lawyer he is about to murder someone, the lawyer can disclose that but if a client admits he already did it, the lawyer can’t spill the beans. 

That’s the issue in the Drew Peterson case—the lawyer is still bound by attorney-client privilege so even if the world and Ms. Peterson’s family want to know what happened, and even if the lawyer has information he wants to tell, a judge just ruled he can’t disclose what happened because no matter how vile the crime, clients still have the right to speak in confidence to their attorney.

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