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IN CAREER-DEFINING CASE,
ADELMAN PUT HINCKLEY AWAY FOR GOOD
BY ROBERT L. PACK '67
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Adelman recalls "the phenomenon that the whole world was watching" the Hinckley trial. Unlike most lawyers, Adelman purposely avoided following any of the extensive media coverage of the case, although he went back and read much of it after the trial. He didn't want to be influenced by what the press was saying—difficult then and nearly impossible now with minute-by-minute news cycles that last 24 hours a day, every day of the year. Jurors found Hinckley not guilty by reason of insanity for his attack on President Reagan and the others; Hinckley has been confined at D.C.'s St. Elizabeth's Hospital ever since.

The route Adelman took to the most coveted prosecutorial assignments at the nation's seat of power occurred almost by default. After graduating from Dartmouth in 1963 he wasn't sure what he wanted to do, so he decided to go to law school "sort of by a process of elimination. I didn't have any knowledge of the law, I didn't know many lawyers, I just decided that I wanted to get a disciplined education." Born and raised in Norristown, and with the expectation that he would ultimately practice in Pennsylvania, he says Penn was the only law school he applied to.
 
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