Havre de Grace, MD asked in Criminal Law and Domestic Violence for Maryland

Q: My attorney failed me. How can I be prejudged without my evidence and complete statement heard by the states attorney?

My attorney told me that my ex and I would have our charges dropped the day before the trial, so i was totally unprepared to know if I should have agreed to the stet. I now know the states attorney planned to find my ex innocent a month before the trial, even though I was the one that was assaulted. my lawyer didn't present my evidence. he didn't have it. But they heard the neighbor lie when she called 911 about me calling me crazy and that there was a protective order that he had on me, that wasn't true. I was told because it happened in his house, because he called first, and because i hesitated to press charges, i was supposed to have been the aggressor and they thought him more credible. he is handicapped with a walker, which he used as a weapon to hurt me with. I was his caregiver for over a year. I was not invited in his house, but he was cordial at the door and I was not turn away. he got mad at me later and screamed at me to leave. I didn't leave right away. but i left.

1 Lawyer Answer
Lee Eidelberg
Lee Eidelberg
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Towson, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: The Office of the State's Attorney has the prerogative either to prosecute, dismiss or in your case(s), place the cross assault cases filed against both you and your ex on an inactive or "stet" docket. Neither case, if "stetted" was dismissed. Thus, if you possess evidence you believe was not presented to the State which proves that you were the victim of an assault (and does not suggest that during some confrontation with your ex you became the "aggressor" and also committed an assault), there is nothing to prevent you from now presenting that evidence to the State to reconsider and possibly "reopen" the "stetted" case against your ex. However, since your post indicates that the State was inclined to side with your ex and possibly dismiss its case against him, the fact that his case was also "stetted" might have been to your benefit, since if the behavior reoccurs in the future, the next offense, as well as the one now inactive, could be reopened. I presume that as a condition of the stets, you are both required to avoid any future unlawful conduct with the other and hopefully the status of the two cases will suffice to prevent further interactions between you.

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