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constitutional law

Jan 26, 2015


Notwithstanding the Department of Corrections' written assurances to the contrary, there is currently a judgment requiring Doe to register as a sex offender—a judgment that, in light of Doe I and Doe II, is wrong.

Jan 23, 2015


By twice indicating his acceptance and satisfaction with the jury as empaneled, without qualification, appellant waived appellate review of his claim that the State exercised its peremptory challenges in violation of Batson; however, his convictions should have merged for sentencing purposes.

Jan 21, 2015

Convicted rapist files Supreme Court challenge to DNA sweat-test

A convicted rapist is urging the Supreme Court to reverse his conviction, saying the Maryland State Police violated the Fourth Amendment by checking the DNA in perspiration he left on a chair while voluntarily answering questions at an MSP station.

Dec 26, 2014

The failed constitutional amendments

A clever tweet that probably will set off alarm bells in the minds constitutional law scholars.

May 8, 2013

Opinions – 5/9/13: Maryland Court of Appeals

Constitutional Law Preemption of local tobacco regulation  BOTTOM LINE: State law occupies field of regulating packaging and sale of tobacco products, and thus impliedly preempted county ordinances regulating packaging, sale and distribution of cigars. CASE: Altadis U.S.A., Inc. v. Prince George’s County, No. 85, Sept. Term, 2010 (filed Apr. 25, 2013) (Judges Bell, Harrell, Battaglia, […[...]

Aug 26, 2012

Opinions – 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals: 8/27/12

Constitutional Law Freedom of speech BOTTOM LINE: Statutory ban on falsely assuming or pretending to be a law enforcement officer was not unconstitutionally overbroad and did not violate defendant’s First Amendment right to freedom of speech because defendant failed to show realistic danger that the statute would significantly compromise anyone’s First Amendment rights, and statute […]

Aug 5, 2012

Opinions – 8/6/12: Maryland Court of Appeals

Constitutional Law Search & seizure BOTTOM LINE: Defendant’s Fourth Amendment rights were not violated where police had reasonable articulable suspicion to initiate a traffic stop of the vehicle in which defendant was a passenger and probable cause to arrest him. CASE: Ray v. State, No. 1444, September Term, 2011 (filed July 2, 2012) (Judges WATTS, […]

Jul 29, 2012

Opinions – 7/30/12: 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals

Constitutional Law Compelled non-commercial speech BOTTOM LINE: City ordinance requiring limited-service pregnancy centers to post signs disclaiming that they did not provide or make referral for abortion or birth control services violated pregnancy center’s right to free speech, because ordinance was content-based restriction compelling non-commercial speech and was not narrowly tailored to ser[...]

Jun 10, 2012

Opinions – 6/11/12: 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals

Civil Procedure Preservation of sufficiency of evidence challenge BOTTOM LINE: Where party moved orally for judgment as a matter of law for insufficiency of evidence under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 50(a) after opposing party’s presentation of the evidence, renewed motion on same grounds at close of all the evidence, but failed to renew motion […]

Apr 1, 2012

Opinions – 4/2/12: 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals

Constitutional Law Qualified immunity BOTTOM LINE: Defendant employees of county sheriff’s department were entitled to qualified immunity from liability for violation of anti-abortion organization’s First Amendment rights by requesting protesting organization to remove graphic anti-abortion signs, because it was not objectively unreasonable for defendants to believe that they could allow organ[...]

Mar 26, 2012

Turley: On health care, don’t forget Scalia

Interesting post from GW’s Jonathan Turley Monday on the health care arguments before the Supreme Court. While all eyes are on Justice Kennedy, Turley urges us to think of it as a “court of two,” with one additional complication: As I have previously noted, it is not simply Justice Kennedy but Justice Scalia that will […]

Mar 4, 2012

Opinions – 3/5/12: Maryland Court of Appeals

Constitutional Law Right to counsel in post-conviction proceedings BOTTOM LINE: Criminal defendant had no right to counsel in post-conviction collateral proceedings, and therefore circuit court did not abuse its discretion in allowing defendant to discharge counsel and continue pro se in post-conviction collateral proceedings. CASE: Grandison v. State, No. 117, Sept. Term, 2010 (filed Feb. [&helli[...]

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