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Top 5: ‘The idea was very out-of-the-box’

Danny Jacobs//February 17, 2012

Top 5: ‘The idea was very out-of-the-box’

By Danny Jacobs

//February 17, 2012

The Court of Appeals delaying the implementation of its counsel at initial bail hearings requirement and the Court of Special Appeals upholding a $3.6 million medical malpractice verdict are among the most-read law stories of the week. Also making the list is a state judge one step closer to the federal bench and a lawsuit over a video shot at the Preakness one step closer to trial. The top 5 stories are:

1. Law firm’s marketing effort takes it to the Baltimore Bridal Show — by Beth Arsenault

Gorgeous gowns, amazing cakes, fabulous florists, luxury limousines: of the 200 or so vendors at the Baltimore Bridal Show, the overwhelming majority were focused on making the couple’s wedding day fantasies a reality.

At one booth, though, the fantasy took a back seat to real-life issues that can make or break a life of wedded bliss. Hodes, Pessin & Katz P.A. — the only law firm in attendance — was on hand with information about such things as prenuptial agreements, credit-history cleanups, estate planning and even vendor contracts.

2. U.S. Senate committee recommends Russell for federal bench — by Steve Lash

Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge George L. Russell III took a giant step forward Thursday in his bid for a seat on the U.S. District Court in Greenbelt.

The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, by voice vote, recommended that the full Senate vote to confirm Russell to the federal bench. That Senate vote has not yet been scheduled.

If confirmed by the Senate, Russell would succeed Judge Peter J. Messitte, who took senior status three years ago.

3. ACLU suit over Preakness video survives police department’s challenge — by Ben Mook

A federal judge in Baltimore has refused to dismiss a lawsuit against the police department by a man who claims police confiscated his cell phone and deleted his videos after he recorded a confrontation at the Preakness last year.

Judge Benson E. Legg denied the Baltimore Police Department’s motion to dismiss because Christopher Sharp’s original complaint as “an amalgamation of conclusions and speculations that are not supported by facts.”

4. Court of Appeals delays bail counsel rule — by Steve Lash

Maryland’s top court has effectively decided to hold off on ordering that public defenders be provided to indigent suspects at initial bail hearings until the General Assembly acts on legislation that could make such an order moot.

The Court of Appeals on Thursday considered but deferred a vote on proposed rules regarding how district court commissioners and public defenders could coordinate such legal representation at the proceedings when a commissioner first sets a defendant’s bail.
An appeals court has upheld a $3.6 million verdict for a 9-year-old boy who suffered brain damage because doctors were too slow to perform a Caesarean section when his mother suffered complications 26 weeks into her pregnancy.

The Court of Special Appeals rejected the hospital’s argument that it should be absolved of liability because it had saved the baby’s life by stopping his mother’s preterm labor and putting her on bed rest three weeks earlier.


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