A judge’s failure to ask prospective jurors if they respect a criminal defendant’s constitutional right not to testify is generally rendered harmless if the defendant does in fact take the stand at trial, a divided Maryland high court ruled this week. In it 5-2 decision, the Court of Appeals said such a testimonial exception exists […]
A defense attorney and a lawyer for the state battled at Maryland’s high court Monday over whether a judge’s failure to ask prospective jurors if they respect a criminal defendant’s constitutional right not to testify invalidates a subsequent conviction or whether the failure is rendered “harmless” if the defendant in fact testifies at trial. Assistant […]
Judges have enormous discretion over the process of jury selection, resulting in different approaches across states, counties or even in neighboring courtrooms.
Welcome to Monday, the 46th anniversary of the premiere of Saturday Night Live. Here are some news items to get your week started. — Arizona will eliminate peremptory challenges in move to end racial bias in jury selection. — Child custody disputes increasingly concern vaccination issue. — Amid partisan bickering, Wisconsin’s Democratic attorney general calls […]
Maryland’s top court will consider if judge’s failure to ask prospective jurors if they respect defendants' right not to testify is harmless if they do testify.
About a dozen overturned convictions have followed the Maryland high court’s landmark decision last year requiring judges to ask prospective jurors – when requested by defense counsel – if they can presume the defendant innocent, require the prosecution to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt and not presume the defendant guilty if he or […]
Montgomery County’s first criminal jury trial in a socially distanced world went “flawlessly,” and the selection of the masked jurors went “quicker than normal,” the county’s chief prosecutor said Thursday. State’s Attorney John McCarthy said the jury was selected within “a couple of hours” Monday morning, the first day of jury trials following their suspension […]
Maryland’s circuit courts will be ready to resume jury trials Oct. 5 in a socially distanced world by taking creative steps, such as converting firehouses to jury rooms, conducting jury selection via Zoom and having jurors sit and deliberate in courtroom spectator galleries, judges said Tuesday. “The days of packing jurors in jury rooms across […]
ANNAPOLIS – A sharply divided Maryland high court ruled Friday that trial judges must ask prospective jurors – when requested by defense counsel – whether they can presume the defendant is innocent, require the prosecution to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt and not presume the defendant is guilty if he or she exercises […]
Attention Maryland circuit court judges: The only way for you to ask prospective jurors if they have strong feelings about the crime charged is to ask them – without elaboration – “Do you have strong feelings about” the crime charged. So ruled Maryland’s top court last week in overturning a man’s convictions for burglary and […]
Maryland’s second-highest court Friday overturned the second-degree murder conviction of a man accused of beating his girlfriend to death in Dundalk, saying the trial judge unconstitutionally barred the defendant’s family from attending jury selection. In its reported 3-0 decision, the Court of Special Appeals said the family’s exclusion from the preliminary proceeding violated Clyde Campbel[...]
With the #MeToo movement continuing to dominate headlines, everyone is talking about sexual harassment — around the water cooler, around the family table and online. Media coverage of harassment is ubiquitous and #MeToo posts regularly go viral on social media. Often the issue is intertwined with partisan and divisive political views. In this environment, a […]