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Maryland Constitutional Law Questions & Answers

Q: After you have fulfilled all parts of a plea agreement on time, does the state have the right to breach this deal?

Promised early expungement, but new States Attorney doesn't want to grant. Plea deal was reached in Harford Circuit Court, and all components of deal were met in full and on time with no additional problems.

Mark Oakley answered on Jun 3, 2019

If you can prove the terms of the plea deal to specifically include early expungement (which all the state can do is agree not to object to it, or consent to the request, because it is up to the judge to grant such a request), then yes, you can enforce the plea agreement and block the State from... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights, Constitutional Law and Consumer Law for Maryland on

Q: My friend passed away and I have a car at his house. The car is titled in my name but his wife wont ler me have it?

Mark Oakley answered on May 26, 2019

Legal title means it’s yours. You own it. You cannot be charged with theft of your own property. You can be charged with trespassing, however, or assault if you go there and a fight ensues. If the vehicle is in the public street, go get it (use a spare key or have it towed). If not, or if you... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Gov & Administrative Law and Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: county government employees are coming on to my property without prior permission

shortly after their visit I have had things stolen.

Timur Akpinar answered on Apr 11, 2019

It's difficult to guess what's taking place here, but when government employees, public utility employees, or other people who have a valid reason for entering your property appear, they generally identify themselves and present ID. In many instances, their visits are announced ahead of time... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Civil Rights and Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: Is the law habitual beggar of Salisbury Maryland 21801 unconstitutional or constitutional ?

I was charged and my lawyer said it was unconstitutional I he could not convince them of it and I still got convicted you

Mark Oakley answered on Jan 31, 2019

The test of constitutionality of anti-begging laws can be quite complex and very fact-based. Whether the particular law in question violates the First Amendment or other constitutional prohibition would require a detailed analysis which your post does not provide a sufficient basis to do. Many... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: Can a company that is open to the public use the reason of a “barring notice” to obtain a persons ID?

The police of been called on a subject in a store for suspicious activity. Can the store require an ID to complete a banning notice. Does that subject have to show ID or can he just leave?

Mark Oakley answered on Jan 12, 2019

Just leave. Only the police can request proof of identity, and then only after they have probable cause to arrest. In DC, there is a limited requirement to provide ID for certain pedestrian (street) offenses without arrest, but that would not apply here.

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law, Constitutional Law and Federal Crimes for Maryland on

Q: My boyfriend was pulled over and the passenger had marijuana and money. He got charged is it legal

The passenger told cops it was his but it wasn't found on him nor was it his vehicle. We it was he say she say.

Mark Oakley answered on Jul 25, 2018

Yes. It’s called constructive possession: if it’s open in an area within reach, and everything in his car is in reach, it creates a rebuttable inference it was his. He has a defense, however, and cases like this can be won. Just because there’s probable cause to charge does not mean there’s... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights and Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: If I have a housemate and the police produce a search warrant for them, are my possesions included in the warrant?

For example; can they search my room or if I have a locked safe?

Mark Oakley answered on May 18, 2018

The search warrant generally applies to an entire premises, unless it is limited by its terms. If not limited, they may very well search and seize your items. If that were to happen, you would need to retain counsel to either invalidate the seizure as to your possessions, or move to suppress any... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Appeals / Appellate Law and Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: I was found guilty of CDS poss in 2016 but sentenced after penilty changes

I was found guilty in 2016 of CDs possession and the maximum penalty then was for years however I was sentenced last week and the sentencing guidelines were changed to 6 months in October of 2017 so my question is is there any case law or statute that says weather sentencing goes by date of guilt... Read more »

Mark Oakley answered on Apr 2, 2018

You are subject to the maximum sentence provided by the law as it was in effect on the date of the offense. The sentencing guidelines are not binding, and a judge is free to consider any mitigating or aggravating circumstances in arriving at the sentence.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Family Law, Personal Injury and Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: In Maryland, Can you defend yourself by using any object against another individual?

Can u use an object to defend yourself against teens & other adults like your parents if your life is at risk?

Peter N. Munsing answered on Jan 3, 2018

You need to consult a criminal defense attorney if you have done this, and discuss no facts on any social media.

Any person may use REASONABLE force to defend themselves but what is reasonable depends on the circumstances.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Divorce, Family Law and Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: Can an attorney represent her lover in court ? In maryland?

I think my ex husband girlfriend will be representing him in our divorce and custody case, she's a lawyer and she's been posing as his lawyer in all of his resent defense cases. Who do I report her to? Is that a conflict of interest?

Thomas Joseph Maronick Jr answered on Aug 4, 2017

From what you have described it absolutely seems like a conflict. You can file a motion petitioning the court to order her withdrawal from the case. You can also contact the lawyer directly and insist she withdraw due to the conflict, if you are representing yourself or obtain a lawyer who would... Read more »

Q: Does a police officer need probable cause to stop your vehicle. a) is yes, does the police have to state in their

report/cititation the reason they stop your vehicle. b) if not is that grounds for dismissal at a motions hearing regardless of any citations issued. c) what would be a good up to date case to cite e.g., Maryland V. Pringle, 540 U.S. 366, 371 (2003), or is their a more recent case. In my case I was... Read more »

Peter N. Munsing answered on Apr 3, 2017

An officer doesn't have to state the reasons he stopped the vehicle in any citation. He observed something wrong and can flag you over. If he's going to arrest or search he needs probable cause. In stop and frisk, it's the frisk that is more probable cause related.The officer can ask someone to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Appeals / Appellate Law, Constitutional Law and Criminal Law for Maryland on

Q: I have a few questions, basically resolving on one certain incident. But basically is 40 years to long to re open a case

My uncle was stabbed and killed in the back 40 years ago. The man got off on self defense. Is there anyway to appeal or retry the case in court. I understand double jeporday, but I don't believe the full story was told with the recent discoveries I've made.

Cedulie Renee Laumann answered on Jan 28, 2017

Double jeopardy prevents re-prosecuting a criminal case against someone, even if the full story was not told at the original trial. There are other legal doctrines that generally prevent the litigation of very old cases (although statute of limitations may not apply to certain acts like murder).

1 Answer | Asked in Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: Officers deny freedom of speech?

Asked an officer for his name and badge number and was told "if you want to go this route I will place you back in this car and you can go to jail, say one more word and you can go to jail? Does this violate my civil liberties?

Bennett James Wills answered on Jan 24, 2017

From your question it doesn't seem like the officer denied you any freedom of speech rights. But if you believe that your rights have been violated in some other way, consult a local civil rights attorney.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights, Constitutional Law and Criminal Law for Maryland on

Q: My neighbor has several cameras pointed at my house with one pointed at my bathroom window. Do I have legal action?

I've asked him to move them and he says he can legally do what he wants.

Bennett James Wills answered on Dec 3, 2016

Probably not. If the cameras are located on his property he can point them at any point he wishes for security.

2 Answers | Asked in Education Law, Constitutional Law and Civil Rights for Maryland on

Q: Can I sue my school on basis of discrimination?

Bennett James Wills answered on Oct 16, 2016

You could. But as a Plaintiff you'll bear the burden to prove your case. Consult with local counsel.

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1 Answer | Asked in Constitutional Law and Criminal Law for Maryland on

Q: Is it legal to carry a sword in public and just have around you for protection?

I been walking around with a sword while sheathed with me for protection and quiet a few cops passed by me witout a word so is it legal??

Bennett James Wills answered on Oct 14, 2016

Probably not a good idea. You could be charged with carrying a dangerous weapon. See Md. Code Ann., Criminal Law, 4-101, for example. While "sword" is not specifically used in the definition, the police or prosecutor could probably find a way to charge you.

1 Answer | Asked in Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: What is a haebus corpus/? The state oa va's vasap program informed be today that the court has one on me for a driving v

Robert Jason De Groot answered on Oct 20, 2015

Habeas corpus is an extraordinary writ. I do not understand the sentence you wrote after the question.

1 Answer | Asked in Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: Can an atheist serve in a public office, or jury duty, in the state of Maryland?

In Torcaso v. Watkins the U.S. Supreme Court found that Maryland's test for public office violated the first amendment. Have there been any other similar cases in Maryland? I'm just a little confused on the wording of articles 36/37 of the Maryland constitution and was hoping for some... Read more »

Robert Jason De Groot answered on Oct 20, 2015

Yes. I do not know and you would probably have to pay an attorney in your state to do the research you want done.

1 Answer | Asked in Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: Can a lawsuit be filed against a correctional facility for housing inmates under a construction site?

My living quarters was a gym, the on the roof of the ceiling they were doing hard hat hat construction work, can a lawsuit be filed for recklessness endangerment?

Robert Jason De Groot answered on Oct 20, 2015

I seriously doubt it.

1 Answer | Asked in Constitutional Law for Maryland on

Q: Are Miranda rights still included in a school

Robert Jason De Groot answered on Oct 20, 2015

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