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RONNELL D. HOLLIDAY v. STATE OF MARYLAND

Criminal procedure — Ineffective assistance of counsel — Insufficient evidence of crime

On October 28, 2015, Ronnell D. Holliday entered a house in College Park and stole an assortment of personal items from the six people who lived there. Mr. Holliday was still in the house when one of the residents, Ronald Yi, arrived home. Mr. Yi saw Mr. Holliday descend the stairs and flee out the open back door with items in his hands and decided to pursue him. After a brief chase and scuffle, Mr. Holliday left the scene, leaving behind what he had taken and some of his own belongings. Mr. Holliday was charged with first-, third-, and fourth-degree burglary, second-degree assault, and three counts of theft in the Circuit Court for Prince George’s County. A jury convicted him of two counts of theft and three counts of burglary and acquitted him of the remaining charges. Despite a dearth of evidence that Mr. Holliday had committed a breaking, Mr. Holliday’s trial counsel did not move for judgment of acquittal on the burglary counts.1 Mr. Holliday contends that the failure to move for judgment and preserve the issue for appeal deprived him of his Sixth Amendment right to effective assistance of counsel. Rather than bring his claim in a post-conviction proceeding, he urges us to review his claim on direct appeal. Because the error was …

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