Tag Archives: murder

Md. high court upholds rap lyrics’ admissibility in murder trial

"The lyrics are relevant because they bear a close factual and temporal nexus to the details of Mr. Forrester’s murder,” Judge Joseph M. Getty wrote for the majority. (The Daily Record/File Photo)

Maryland’s top court Wednesday upheld the second-degree murder conviction of a jailhouse rap singer who argued in vain that his violent lyrics should not have been admissible at trial despite their eerie similarity to the details of the slaying. In ...

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Murderers’ ‘duress defense’ applies only to imminent death, Md. court says

FILE - In this June 21, 2016 file photo, a child peers from behind the door of her home, covered with Mara Salvatrucha, or MS-13, gang graffiti, in Soyapango, El Salvador. The Maryland Court of Appeals said the sentencing judge validly considered Oscar Cruz-Quintanilla’s 10-year membership in MS-13, a gang so violent – and devoid of any lawful activity – that its initiation involves committing a crime.(AP Photo/Salvador Melendez, File)

Members of violent gangs who kill out of fear they would soon be killed if they disobeyed a deadly order cannot later claim they acted out of duress in order to change a murder charge to voluntary manslaughter, Maryland’s second-highest ...

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Md. high court weighs rap lyrics’ admissibility in murder trial

Maryland Court of Appeals (File Photo)

A convicted murderer’s attorney told Maryland’s top court this week that the trial judge erred in admitting into evidence the violent rap lyrics his client wrote and sang to an associate during a jailhouse telephone call before trial. The lyrics ...

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Md. high court: Defense’s victim-blaming opening cannot be rebutted

“Here, we unequivocally hold that, despite the circumstance – and our recognition – that jury nullification sometimes occurs, jury nullification is not authorized in Maryland and a jury does not have the right to engage in jury nullification,” Judge Shirley M. Watts wrote for the high court majority. (The Daily Record/File Photo)

A defense attorney’s opening statement blaming the victim of a violent crime does not “open the door” for the prosecutor to present evidence of the victim’s peaceful demeanor, Maryland’s top court unanimously ruled in a murderer’s appeal Friday. Rather, the ...

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