Trial of liquor board commissioner delayed

June 15, 2006|By LYNN ANDERSON | LYNN ANDERSON,SUN REPORTER

City liquor board Commissioner Edward Smith Jr. appeared in Baltimore Circuit Court yesterday to answer charges that he threatened the mother of his daughter and the woman's fiance with an ax in December.

Smith, a well-known defense attorney and outspoken member of the liquor board, had requested a trial, but it was postponed until Oct. 10 after his attorney asked Judge Gale E. Rasin to assign a judge to the case who did not know Smith, or to transfer it out of the city court system altogether.

"We have to find a judge that doesn't know Mr. Smith," said Smith's attorney, Russell Neverdon.

Smith appeared in the courtroom briefly but was not present when Neverdon discussed the matter of his trial with Rasin.

Smith has been charged with two counts of second-degree assault and possession of a deadly weapon in connection with the Dec. 10 incident that occurred in front of his home in the 6100 block of Benhurst Road.

According to court documents, Smith pulled an ax from the trunk of his car and approached Eleanora Franklin, the mother of his daughter, and Franklin's fiance, Gary W. Forbes, after they came to his home to pick up the girl.

Forbes, who filed the complaint in Baltimore District Court on Dec. 12, said Smith verbally assaulted Franklin and used obscene language when Forbes tried to intervene. Forbes said Smith threatened the couple with an ax, stating: "Do you want some of this?"

Smith, who was appointed by Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. to the liquor board in July, has declined to discuss the matter.

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