Ready for Trial: Law Enforcement Compliment
A law enforcement compliment can be a hard thing to come by for a Maryland criminal defense attorney.
But, in the last week, we have had two Maryland police officers give us law enforcement compliments after standing by our firms’ mantra: Ready for trial!
The courts and prosecutors treat you differently when you are: Ready for trial! Judges and Assistant State’s Attorneys don’t remember criminal defense attorneys that plead their clients guilty, but they do recognize the lawyers that take cases to trial.
Frederick County DUI Trial: Law Enforcement Compliment
The first law enforcement compliment arose from a Frederick County DUI trial.
We put the police officer through a detailed and thorough cross-examination about the stop, standard field sobriety tests, arrest, and breathalyzer.
Unfortunately, the judge did not agree with our theory of the case and found my client guilty of DWI. We are currently appealing the case in the Frederick County Circuit Court and will be scheduled for a jury trial in the coming months.
My client represented himself at the MVA hearing. After the MVA hearing, the police officer approached my client and said that he was really impressed with his defense attorney during the trial.
Apparently, my cross-examination had struck a chord with the police officer. I wasn’t rude, or insulting. I stuck to a strategy of identifying everything the police either did wrong, or failed to observe.
By everything, I mean everything.
The prosecutor in our district court DUI trial did a great job and I look forward to litigating the case, again, in circuit court.
Washington County Theft Trial: Law Enforcement Compliment
The second law enforcement compliment arose from a Washington County theft trial. The case was weak.
I knew. The State knew it. The co-defendant’s attorneys knew it. The police officer knew it.
After advising the Assistant State’s Attorney that my client and I were ready for trial, the police officer approached me in the hallway.
He wanted to work the case out by way of a guilty plea. Said he wasn’t opposed to my client getting a probation before judgment and no jail time.
I explained that I understand his position and the hard work he put into the case, but I couldn’t advise my client to plead guilty. The case was weak, and the State was going to have a hard time prove an important element of theft: intent.
I also explained that I thought the police officer’s interrogation of my client without Miranda rights was unconstitutional. My plan to was gut the State’s case, leaving the prosecutor with no evidence linking my client to the theft.
If that failed, then I would judo law my client’s statements and use them against the State by showing that he never admitted to knowing about the theft. An important element of theft.
The police officer and I cordially agreed to disagree with the outcome of the case.
About 30 minutes later, the police approached me with the victims in the case. The police officer explained to the victims that my client’s was being dismissed.
What changed? First, the more culpable co-defendant plead guilty. Second, the officer realized his case against my client was weak. Rather than sit around for another two hours and have a trial, it was easier to come to grips with the fact that we were ready for trial.
In the hallway after my client’s was dismissed, the police officer asked if I was local Hagerstown attorney. I said I wasn’t, that I was a Carroll County Criminal Defense Attorney.
The prosecutor in this case had a tough set of facts and I appreciate the willingness to use their discretion and dismiss the case.
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The Law Office of Ross W. Albers is located in Westminster, Maryland. Maryland Criminal Defense Attorney Ross W. Albers is a former Baltimore City prosecutor that knows what you’re up against. The Law Office of Ross W. Albers is a litigation law practice that focuses on taking criminal and driving under the influence cases to trial.