A DUI conviction in Maryland and the District of Columbia could have dire consequences. You could lose your driving privileges, you could incur huge fines and you could face jail time. The thought of any of these outcomes can be frightening to most. It is important to make sure your rights are protected. An experienced DUI attorney in Maryland and the District of Columbia will have a number of tools readily available to help you fight your DUI charge.
Marital Privilege – Maryland has a marital privilege law that allows spouses to invoke their right not to testify in a criminal case against their wife or husband. This privilege is permitted one time and can, in some cases, lead to the case being dismissed. Sometimes, the prosecution presses forward even if the marital privilege is asserted. That can happen when the prosecution has an independent witness to support its case.
Many people wrongly believe that if they tell the prosecutor that they no longer wish to press charges that the case simply goes away. This rarely happens in Maryland as prosecutors pursue domestic violence cases quite vigorously.
Search and seizure issues under the 4th Amendment are extremely important in many drug cases. Often, police are making drug arrests without search warrants and it is important to have your attorney analyze your individual case to see if there was a violation of the 4th Amendment.
The consequences of a 4th Amendment violation can be extremely crucial in your case and can lead to your case being dismissed or the offer of a much more favorable disposition to your case. Get Help with your Drug Crime matter
Jonathan Fellner handles appeals and modification of sentences and post-conviction petitions. Mr. Fellner represents clients in the District of Columbia and Maryland in such cases.
Often, defendants who lose their cases at the trial level, are despondent and forget about important procedural deadlines. Noticing your appeal or modification request in a timely fashion is the first step toward getting another crack at your case.
Both Maryland and the District of Columbia require all defendants to note their appeals within 30 dates of sentencing. Maryland requires 90 days from sentencing to make a modification request. The District of Columbia has a 120-day time period for requesting a modification of sentence.
In addition to direct appeals and modifications, other possible post-conviction petitions, include: newly discovered evidence and ineffective assistance of trial counsel.
Protective Orders/Peace Orders
What is a protective order? A protective order is a civil order that people seek to prevent others from abusing, harassing or contacting them. The orders can be issued by a judge or a commissioner. Protective orders usually apply when people are related or married or if they have lived together in an intimate relationship for 90 days within the past year. Laws governing protective orders are located at Maryland Family Law Section 4-504 to 4-509
What is a peace order? A peace order is an order issued by a judge or commissioner that requires the person named in the order as the respondent to stay away from the person who sough the order, the petitioner, and not to have any contact with that person. Peace orders must relate to events that occurred within the last 30 days. The law governing Peace Orders is found in Courts and Judicial Proceeding Sections 3-1503- to 3-1508.
Bottom Line: While peace orders and protective orders are civil in nature, it is important to consult with an attorney before consenting to such an order. Any violation of a peace or protective order is subject to a criminal case and possible 90-day jail sentence.
This article explains exactly which type of order to apply for if you are unsure.