Samuel Dash (February 27, 1925 – May 29, 2004) was an American professor of law who was chief counsel for the Senate Watergate Committee during the Watergate scandal. Dash became famous for his televised interrogations during the hearings held by the United States Congress on the Watergate incident.
At the age of 18, with the United States engaged in fighting World War II, Dash enlisted in the Army Air Corps and served as a bombardier navigator, flying missions over Italy. After the war, Dash studied at Harvard Law School where he gained his degree. In 1955 he became a district attorney in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but he later went into private practice.
Dash became a law professor at Georgetown University, where he was working when he was requested to assist United States Senator Sam Ervin, head of the Senate Committee charged to investigate the possible involvement of President Richard Nixon in an attempted break in, and its subsequent cover up, of offices used by the Democratic Party at the Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C. He was given a leave of absence by the university to take on this position.
Two decades later, Dash was again in the news after resigning his post as ethics adviser to independent counsel Kenneth Starr. After working for the investigation for four years, Dash resigned to protest Starr's appearance before the United States House Committee on the Judiciary. Dash felt that Starr was acting as an "aggressive advocate" instead of an impartial investigator.
Dash returned to Georgetown, where, for nearly 40 years, he taught criminal procedure. Shortly before his death, he published The Intruders: Unreasonable Searches and Seizures from King John to John Ashcroft, which discusses the risks to freedom in modern society, particularly in the wake of the PATRIOT Act.
Dash died in Washington, D.C., of congestive heart failure, aged 79, on the same day as Archibald Cox, the special prosecutor for the Watergate scandal. His remains were buried in Parklawn Memorial Park in Rockville, Maryland.