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Dorie Klein

Professor of Law | Englehardt Research Fellow


Contact Information


  • J.D., Vanderbilt University Law School, 2002
  • M.A. Psychology, University of Pennsylvania, 1989
  • B.A., Swarthmore College, 1988

License to Practice

  • New York

Specialties and Courses

  • Criminal law
  • Evidence
  • Mental health law
  • Property
  • Theories of punishment


St. Mary’s University School of Law Professor Dorie Klein, J.D., writes and teaches in the areas of evidence, criminal law and mental health law. Her recent scholarship includes several law review articles examining the pitfalls of character evidence, as well as several articles exploring ways to reduce the excessive punitiveness of criminal punishments. In 2022 Carolina Academic Press published the second edition of her casebook, Texas Criminal Law. In addition to teaching core courses in evidence and criminal law, Klein has developed upper-level writing seminars that focus on a variety of specialized subjects, including mental health law, the law of self-defense and the operation of appellate courts.

Prior to joining the St. Mary’s law faculty in 2006,  Klein was a visiting assistant professor of law at Florida State University and a judicial clerk for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. She received her J.D. degree from Vanderbilt University, where she was an articles editor for the Vanderbilt Law Review. Klein also holds an M.A. degree in clinical psychology from the University of Pennsylvania and a B.A. in biopsychology from Swarthmore College. She worked as a community mental health therapist for several years before attending law school.