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By William Thompson and William Thompson,Eastern Shore Bureau of The Sun | July 25, 1994
OCEAN CITY -- Like countless others before him, the stocky 20-year-old man had come to Maryland's seaside resort to party and to soak up the rays.He partied. Now he was waiting to see if he was to get burned. Not by the sun this time, but by the bespectacled man in the black robe seated behind the polished wood bench inside Ocean City's District Court building on 65th Street.It's not listed in any of the glossy brochures touting the vacation spot's attractions. But the Ocean City District Court -- a satellite facility of Worcester County's central court system in nearby Snow Hill -- is where thousands of vacationers end up each year when their quest for a good time turns bad.The court handles traffic and minor criminal cases throughout the year.
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NEWS
By Frederick N. Rasmussen, The Baltimore Sun | September 30, 2013
Former Baltimore City Circuit Judge Basil A. Thomas, whose legal career spanned more than seven decades, died Friday of congestive heart failure at the Blakehurst Retirement Community in Towson. He was 98. "He's my guy. Basil lived a long and full life that was very productive, and you can't ask for any more than that," said retired Chief Judge Robert M. Bell of the Maryland Court of Appeals. "He was a very interesting man and the consummate professional. For him, the rule of law was paramount.
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NEWS
May 7, 2004
City police are investigating the disappearance of more than $12,000 in cash and checks from a safe at the Eastside District Court -- the proceeds from fines and court cost payments. The apparent theft was discovered about 4 p.m. yesterday when two employees of the court in the 1400 block of E. North Ave., using a confidential combination, and a security officer of Dunbar Armored Inc., who had a key, opened a safe in the cashier's officer and discovered the funds were missing, said Officer Nicole Monroe, a city police spokeswoman.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Susan Reimer and The Baltimore Sun | July 22, 2013
What was the hardest lesson you've learned so far? "That kids grow up too fast. " What do you do to relax? "Go to the gym. " Your (other) dream job would be ... "Interior designer or kindergarten teacher. " What's on your playlist? "Citizen Cope, U2 and The Great Gatsby soundtrack. " What is your favorite book? "Anything historical. " What's your favorite vacation destination? "The beach anywhere!"
NEWS
By Jay Apperson and Jay Apperson,Sun Staff Writer | January 24, 1995
Baltimore jurors, already the lowest paid in the state at $10 a day, would see their pay cut in half under a preliminary budget submitted by city court officials.The proposal is at the center of a budget tussle between Joseph H. H. Kaplan, the city's administrative judge, and Edward J. Gallagher, the city budget director.While justifying the proposal as the quickest way to cut the court budget to meet city demands, Judge Kaplan said in the next breath that he'd rather see the city relax its budget allowance and leave juror pay where it is.In response, Mr. Gallagher said the juror fee reduction would not be considered and the $6.6 million "target" figure would remain "pretty firm."
NEWS
By M. Dion Thompson and M. Dion Thompson,SUN STAFF | January 27, 2000
Baltimore's Circuit Court showed "dramatic" improvements last year in its efforts to address "serious institutional and systemic problems," Maryland's chief judge told the General Assembly yesterday. During his annual State of the Judiciary address, Judge Robert M. Bell appeared to be making a case for lawmakers to release millions of dollars they have withheld from the court system. Skeptical legislators have kept the money to force the court to make needed improvements. "You should be aware of, and the record should reflect, the dramatic results the Circuit Court for Baltimore City has achieved," Bell said.
NEWS
By Caitlin Francke and Caitlin Francke,SUN STAFF | October 20, 1999
Baltimore's administrative judge told state legislators yesterday that the courts have solved the crisis in the city's justice system that led to chronic trial delays and the release of several criminal suspects.In the past nine months, the criminal case backlog has been slashed, trial delays have been reduced and, for the first time in six years, judges and prosecutors are closing more cases than are being filed, Judge Ellen M. Heller, the city's new administrative judge, told lawmakers.
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel and Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF | July 27, 2000
A Baltimore lawyer who was a former assistant federal prosecutor and one-time deputy director of the Legal Aid Bureau had his law license suspended yesterday by the Court of Appeals. Michael G. Middleton, in private practice since 1988, received a suspension of at least three years. In a 16-page opinion, the state's top judges said he was incompetent in representing several criminal defendants and he had been found in criminal contempt last November for lying to a Baltimore County judge to win a delay for a trial.
NEWS
By Jamie Smith and Jamie Smith,SUN STAFF | August 19, 1997
Saundra Elizabeth Banks, the city Circuit Court clerk for as long as the position existed, died Sunday at Johns Hopkins Hospital from complications from a heart transplant. She was 49.During her 14 years in the elected position, the former Saundra Smith developed a reputation as a problem-solver and dedicated worker who loved her job."I really can't say enough about her," said Joseph H. H. Kaplan, the Circuit Court's administrative judge, who worked with Mrs. Banks for almost 20 years. "My only hope is we ultimately find someone who can be half the person she was."
NEWS
By Julie Bykowicz and John Fritze and Julie Bykowicz and John Fritze,sun reporters | June 19, 2008
Former Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Clark will not get his job back, a city judge has ruled. Saying Clark's case was flawed and that returning him to office would create too much chaos, Circuit Judge Carol E. Smith on Tuesday denied the former commissioner's motion for reinstatement. Clark, who says he was wrongly dismissed in 2004, is also suing the city for $120 million. The case returned to city court after the state's highest court, the Court of Appeals, sided with Clark in a March ruling, saying that mayors may fire commissioners only under certain circumstances.
NEWS
June 5, 2012
Morgan State University has gone on lockdown. Unfortunately, it was not before one of its students, Alexander Kinyua, allegedly beat a man in a campus apartment with a baseball bat, or before Mr. Kinyua admitted to killing, dismembering and eating some body parts of his off-campus roommate. Instead, the school's officials, from the president and regents chairman on down, have gone into a defensive crouch in response to increasingly difficult questions about whether someone at the university should have heeded what, in retrospect, look like warning signs that something was amiss with the former engineering student and ROTC cadet.
NEWS
By Tricia Bishop, The Baltimore Sun | June 5, 2012
Roughly 40 Baltimore circuit court employees and their union representatives marched to City Hall Monday afternoon, complaining of dangerous courthouse conditions and threatening to sue if they don't get funds for new office space, as prosecutors have been separately promised. "If … we're left behind, that's not justice," said Pat Kelly, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, Local 3674, which represents members of the Circuit Court clerk's office.
BUSINESS
By Hanah Cho, The Baltimore Sun | May 9, 2011
Constellation Energy Group shareholders have filed six lawsuits in Baltimore City Circuit Court since the power company announced in late April that it had agreed to sell itself to Chicago-based Exelon Corp. for $7.9 billion in an all-stock deal. In a filing Monday with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Constellation said the class-action lawsuits allege the company's directors breached their fiduciary duties because the deal does not maximize shareholder value. Within a day of the deal's announcement, law firms were seeking plaintiffs in filing class-action lawsuits challenging the proposed union, which would create the largest U.S. competitive energy provider and one of the largest utility systems in the country.
NEWS
By Tricia Bishop, The Baltimore Su | April 12, 2011
The woman sat handcuffed in front of Baltimore Circuit Judge Gale Rasin, freshly convicted of second-degree child abuse for beating her 8-year-old grandchild with a belt. She was 44, depressed, diagnosed with bipolar disorder and likely dealing with post-traumatic stress from being raped twice, according to a court medical report, yet she had received little treatment. Her father physically abused her growing up, and she, in turn, abused her own family, Rasin concluded during the hearing.
NEWS
By Jacques Kelly, The Baltimore Sun and Baltimore Sun reporter | October 26, 2010
Judge John Prevas loved the music of rockers Steely Dan and sang most Wednesdays at Southeast Baltimore karaoke bars. He was recalled Tuesday as an old-school, tough jurist who knew his law inside and out and could also argue baseball trivia with the best. Judge Prevas, the chief judge of the Circuit Court for Baltimore City, died of a heart attack Monday night at Mercy Medical Center. He was 63. Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski called the judge "a friend, an adviser," adding that "Baltimore has lost a truly great man. " Born in Baltimore, he was the son of an attorney, Konstantine "Gus" Prevas, who survives him and lives in Baltimore.
NEWS
October 18, 2010
When Maryland voters go to the polls next month, they'll face decisions on three statewide questions that would impact the state constitution. The first two are straightforward — whether to hold a constitutional convention (a measure we believe is unnecessary and potentially problematic) and whether to amend the constitution to limit the right to a jury trial in civil disputes to lawsuits where the amount in controversy is greater than $15,000, a reasonable reform that would save money and help speed the docket.
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel and Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF | June 5, 1999
Judges of the state's highest court heard arguments yesterday in a case whose chronic delays spotlighted congestion in Baltimore's courts and sparked major changes there.The Maryland attorney general's office asked the Court of Appeals to reinstate the child-molestation conviction of a Baltimore County man. His lawyer, Deborah Liu, asked the court to uphold the intermediate appellate court ruling that threw out the conviction because the case had been postponed so many times in the city's Circuit Court.
NEWS
By Michael A. Fletcher and Michael A. Fletcher,Evening Sun Staff | December 6, 1990
Gearing up to mount an "aggressive lobbying effort" during the 1991 General Assembly, Baltimore is spending $24,700 to hire one of Maryland's best known lobbyists to plead its case.The Board of Estimates yesterday approved the hiring of Edgar P. Silver, a former City Circuit Court judge and city legislator, who now is a partner in the law firm Rifkin, Evans and Silver.Silver has worked closely with Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke since Schmoke was elected city state's attorney in 1982. Also, for more than 50 years, Silver has been a friend and confidant of Gov. William Donald Schaefer, who is perhaps Schmoke's chief political antagonist.
NEWS
By Larry Carson, The Baltimore Sun | August 5, 2010
Gas fumes, possibly from a cleaning product in use for maintenance, sent three people to Sinai Hospital in Baltimore and forced the evacuation of 200 people from the Ellicott City District Court building Thursday afternoon. The three people sent to Sinai are in serious condition for exposure to what investigators believe was chlorine powder being used by a contract maintenance crew working on the ventilation system. A fourth visitor to the building was treated at the scene and a county police officer was treated and released.
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