Dixon Seeks To Block Subpoenas

July 09, 2009|By Jacques Kelly | Jacques Kelly,jacques.kelly@baltsun.com

Attorneys for Mayor Sheila Dixon have moved to block the state prosecutor's attempt to get additional information from one current and one former city employee he has called to testify before a grand jury.

The lawyers filed a motion this week to quash subpoenas issued to Dixon's scheduler, Zoe Michal, and Anne Lansey, who previously worked in the city's Department of Transportation. Michal and Lansey were to appear Thursday at the Clarence M. Mitchell Jr. Courthouse.

In his motion, Dixon's attorney, Arnold Weiner, said that the state prosecutor is abusing the grand jury process by subpoenaing witnesses to gather more evidence for the mayor's coming trial. She faces seven criminal charges, including theft, relating to gift cards that had been donated to give to the needy. Weiner said that prosecutors may not use the grand jury to attain evidence for use in pending cases or to prepare for trial.

Weiner said the prosecutor's subpoenas reveal a "fundamental weakness" in the case against Dixon, which he said was "dealt a significant blow" in May when a judge threw out five of the original 12 charges against the mayor.

Weiner called the new subpoenas "grossly improper" and "anathema to the proper use of the grand jury."

State Prosecutor Robert A. Rohrbaugh declined to comment on the filing. "It would be extremely inappropriate," he said.

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