Progress in Drug Policy

Progress in Drug Policy A recent Court of Appeals decision threatening to require appointment of counsel at bail hearings before District Court commissioners spurred long-overdue reforms in drug laws. Chapter 352 of the Acts of 2012 allows probation before judgment for a second drug possession offense; a similar proposal by Delegate Curtis Anderson and others […]

Reefer Madness: Reform our crazy marijuana laws

baltimoresun.com Reefer madness: Reform our crazy marijuana laws 750,000 marijuana arrests a year have gotten our society nowhere By George W. Liebmann 7:00 AM EDT, August 15, 2011 The militarization of the Mexican border is a new phenomenon for two nations whose militaries have traditionally been made to stay out of politics. There are constant […]

Reform crime laws

Let's hear from the state's attorney candidates on peremptory challenges, drug offenses In a little more than two weeks, Baltimore City voters will participate in a seriously contested election for state’s attorney. There are various suggestions for rendering the criminal justice system more efficient. “Smoking out” the candidates would be useful to city voters next […]

Reform crime laws

Let’s hear from the state’s attorney candidates on peremptory challenges, drug offenses In a little more than two weeks, Baltimore City voters will participate in a seriously contested election for state’s attorney. There are various suggestions for rendering the criminal justice system more efficient. “Smoking out” the candidates would be useful to city voters next […]

Deep flaws in proposed hate crimes bill

– Endorsement by major media organs like The Washington Post and many “liberals” in the nation’s political establishment of the proposed “hate crimes” bill exists in strange juxtaposition with recent articles and editorials on the U.S. attorneys scandal deploring the abuse and over-centralization of federal law enforcement. But the supporters of the hate crimes bill […]

Bush Replaces U.S. Attorneys in Power Play

The news that the Bush administration has replaced seven U.S. attorneys, none charged with or guilty of wrongdoing, with people fairly describable as Washington apparatchiks should give pause to all those concerned with America’s working Constitution. This was made possible by a provision of the Patriot Act allowing the president to make interim appointments of […]

A Short Attention Span

A Short Attention Span Ten years ago, a City Council Committee, under a Chairman who shall go nameless (his name starts with “O’” and is neither German nor Ukrainian), took a look at the Baltimore City criminal justice system. Its central focus was Baltimore’s notorious Central Booking Facility, a state-financed facility whose operation has important […]

George Liebmann: The conflict between Mr.Malley and Mr. Clark

PDF BALTIMORE – The recent opinion by an especially distinguished panel of the Court of Special Appeals in Clark v. O’Malley allowing a fired police commissioner’s suit to go forward should have come as a surprise to nobody. An 1860 statute dictating that the police commissioner of Baltimore City can be discharged only for just […]

Counterpoint – ‘Civil Gideon’: An idea whose time has passed

A lawsuit seeks to accord civil litigants a constitutional right to state-paid lawyers like that guaranteed criminal defendants by the famous case of Gideon v. Wainwright. The test case is Frase v. Barnhart, a child custody matter which the Court of Appeals is to hear this October. Not one Marylander in a hundred knows about […]

The Baltimore Criminal Justice System: The Judges Speak

MR. GEORGE W. LIEBMANN: This is a symposium on the criminal justice system in Baltimore City that is jointly sponsored by three organizations: The Bar Association of Baltimore City, Maryland Business for Responsive Government, and the Calvert Institute for Policy Research. We are honored to have with us this evening four distinguished judges, Judge Charles […]