Nonlawyers doing legal work gets Colorado’s approval
Today is Monday, the 163rd anniversary of the debut of the Pony Express. Here are some other news items. — Colorado allows certain nonlawyers to do legal work. — Kosovo’s ex-president faces murder and torture charges. — Could you be an impartial juror after seeing autopsy photos of children? — Did slip-and-fall cases spur a […]
Defendants’ rights not violated by masked prospective jurors, Md. appeals court says
A defendant’s constitutional right to view prospective jurors as they answer questions was not violated by the pandemic-spurred mandate that they wear masks, Maryland’s second-highest court ruled.
Lawyers had no duty to object before CSI effect ruling, Md. high court says
Maryland’s top court excused lawyers who failed to object to judges telling jurors the state need not present DNA evidence to prove guilt before a 2010 ruling.
Md. high court weighs ‘CSI’ effect’s impact on ineffective-assistance claims
This expectation of jurors has been dubbed the “CSI effect” in recognition of the popular show “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation."
Md. high court finds harmless error exception to mandatory voir dire question
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 […]
Md. high court will weigh if ‘CSI-effect’ rulings apply retroactively
The Maryland Court of Appeals will consider whether a general prohibition on judges telling prospective or sitting jurors that prosecutors need not present scientific evidence to prove a defendant’s guilt applies to criminal convictions reached before the high court issued its general ban about a dozen years ago. The court this month agreed to hear […]
Md. high court weighs exception to mandatory voir dire question
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 […]
Maryland high court will weigh exception to mandatory voir dire question
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.
Maryland high court gives defense lawyers break during jury selection
Attention criminal defense attorneys: Maryland’s top court has drawn a significant legal distinction between questions asked and not asked of prospective jurors in your trials.
Kazadi leads to overturned convictions, praise and prosecutorial lessons
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 […]
Appeals court overturns Baltimore murder conviction
They were tried together but only the convicted murderer will get a new trial because his attorney objected to the judge’s refusal to ask prospective jurors if they could presume the defendants innocent while the lawyer for the co-defendant convicted of handgun offenses failed to object, Maryland’s second-highest court ruled this week. In its reported […]
Justices decline Westminster robber’s ineffective-counsel appeal
The Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear a convicted Westminster armed robber’s argument that his trial attorney’s failure to exclude from the jury a juror who had acknowledged potential bias against accused thieves rendered the conviction invalid despite the evidence of guilt. The justices let stand without comment a Maryland high court ruling that […]