142 A. 96 (Md. 1928), 26, Barrett v. State

Docket Nº:26.
Citation:142 A. 96, 155 Md. 636
Opinion Judge:ADKINS, J.
Party Name:BARRETT v. STATE.
Attorney:William H. Harlan, of Bel Air, for appellant. Thomas H. Robinson, Atty. Gen., and W. Worthington Hopkins, State's Atty., of Bel Air, for the State.
Judge Panel:Argued before BOND, C.J., and PATTISON, URNER, ADKINS, OFFUTT, DIGGES, PARKE, and SLOAN, JJ.
Case Date:May 25, 1928
Court:Court of Appeals of Maryland
 
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Page 96

142 A. 96 (Md. 1928)

155 Md. 636

BARRETT

v.

STATE.

No. 26.

Court of Appeals of Maryland

May 25, 1928

Appeal from Circuit Court, Harford County; Walter W. Preston, Judge.

Elmer Barrett was indicted for larceny, and from an order directing the entry of a nolle prosequi, he appeals. Affirmed.

Argued before BOND, C.J., and PATTISON, URNER, ADKINS, OFFUTT, DIGGES, PARKE, and SLOAN, JJ.

William H. Harlan, of Bel Air, for appellant.

Thomas H. Robinson, Atty. Gen., and W. Worthington Hopkins, State's Atty., of Bel Air, for the State.

Page 97

ADKINS, J.

Appellant was indicted for larceny, and pleaded "not guilty." When the case was called for trial, the witnesses for both sides were present, and both sides stated they were ready for trial, and the defendant elected to be tried by a jury. The jury being about to be impaneled, the state's attorney stated to the court that the state was unable to prove the charge against the defendant, and further stated that he desired to enter a nolle prosequi in the case. The defendant objected to this entry being made, and moved the court to require the state's attorney either to enter "not guilty confessed," or to proceed then and there to impanel a jury to try the charge upon which the defendant had been indicted. The court ruled that the state's attorney had the absolute right against the protest, and therefore overruled the motion of the defendant, and directed the entry of a nolle prosequi to be made as asked by the state's attorney. This appeal is from that action of the court.

There is a motion by appellee to dismiss the appeal on the ground that there was no sentence, judgment, or final determination of the case.

The motion is overruled. There was a final disposition of the case when the court ordered the entry of the nolle prosequi at the instance of the state's attorney. The question raised by the motion of the defendant was, not the proper exercise of discretion, but the right to make the entry over the objection of the defendant.

If we agreed that there had not been "a final determination of the case," it would be difficult to sustain the action of the trial court. For it would be intolerable, and subversive of the constitutional rights of the accused to a speedy trial, if the state's attorney had the power, with or without the concurrence of the court, to discontinue...

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