Argument Schedule -- May 2013


September Term, 2012


Wednesday, May 1, 2013:

Bar Admissions

AG No. 15  Attorney Grievance Commission of Maryland v. Dean Clayton Kremer

Attorney for Petitioner: James P. Botluk
Attorney for Respondent: Dean Clayton Kremer

AG No. 18  Attorney Grievance Commission of Maryland v. Jason Ashley Kobin

Attorney for Petitioner: James N. Gaither
Attorney for Respondent: Jason Ashley Kobin

No. 78  Joanna Anthony v. Peter Garrity

Issues – Family Law – (1) When a person is on the street outside a dwelling from which that person is barred by a Protective Order, does an individual inside the dwelling have probable cause to call 911 as a matter of law or is that a fact issue to be resolved by a jury based on the subjective beliefs of that individual? (2) Does the street area in front of a home constitute a "common area surrounding the dwelling" in cases where a Protective Order bars entry to the dwelling? (3) Is calling 911 enough to establish grounds for a "malicious prosecution" claim, where arrest and prosecution resulted from the decision of law enforcement that the Protective Order was violated?

Attorney for Petitioner: Susan M. Euteneuer
Attorneys for Respondent: Steven S. Hamilton and James M. Nichols

No. 77  Ocean City, Maryland Chamber of Commerce, Inc. v. Daniel J. Barufaldi

Issues – Courts & Judicial Proceedings – (1) Did CSA employ the wrong standard of review in reversing the trial court's denial of fees? (2) May trial courts consider the inability of a defendant to pay in deciding whether to award fees in a Maryland Wage Payment and Collection Law (MWPCL) case? (3) May trial courts consider the deterrent effect of a fee award in deciding whether to award fees in an MWPCL case? (4) May trial courts consider the applicability of the case beyond its particular factual context in deciding whether to award fees in an MWPCL case? (5) On what grounds or under what circumstances may a trial court properly deny a claim for fees under the MWPCL?

Attorney for Petitioner: Bruce F. Bright
Attorney for Respondent: Philip B. Zipin


Thursday, May 2, 2013:

AG No. 20  Attorney Grievance Commission of Maryland v. Gina Michelle O'Leary

Attorney for Petitioner: Lydia E. Lawless
Attorney for Respondent: Gina Michelle O'Leary

No. 80  Bashawn Montgomery Ray v. State of Maryland

Issues – Criminal Law – (1) Did CSA err in holding that there existed probable cause to arrest Petitioner under the common enterprise theory when counterfeit credit cards were discovered in a vehicle that was later found to contain items purchased using those credit cards? (2) Should CSA have refused to address Petitioner's claim that he was arrested without probable cause where this issue was not raised at the suppression hearing and no testimony or evidence was produced on the circumstances of his arrest?

Attorney for Petitioner: Nancy S. Forster
Attorney for Respondent: Todd W. Hesel

No. 83  John L. Webb, Sr., et ux. v. G. Philip Nowak, et ux.

Issues - Real Property - (1) Is the principle that the interpretation of a deed is a question of law to be considered de novo in appellate review inapplicable in boundary disputes, as CSA opined? (2) May the preference for monuments over courses and distances be applied to reduce the amount of a grant, as CSA determined? (3) Was the trial court's interpretation of the deed incorrect?

Attorney for Petitioner: William C. Wantz
Attorney for Respondent: Nicholas J. Nowak


Monday, May 6, 2013:

AG No. 21  Attorney Grievance Commission of Maryland v. Jimmy Anthony Bell

Attorney for Petitioner: JaCina N. Stanton
Attorney for Respondent: Derrick G. Hamlin

No. 84  In Re: Adoption/Guardianship of Jayden G.

Issues - Family Law - (1) Did CSA err in affirming the trial court's order terminating parental rights, where the trial court proceeded with that hearing while the appeal challenging the CINA order changing the permanency plan from reunification to nonrelative adoption was still pending in CSA, and where ultimately the order changing the permanency plan was vacated? (2) Did the trial court err in basing its decision to terminate parental rights on Jayden's prospect of being adopted by, as well as the quality of care provided by, his current foster care providers?

Attorney for Petitioner: Nenutzka C. Villamar
Attorneys for Respondent: Ann M. Sheridan and Cherie J. Jones

No. 86  Tommy Whack, Jr. v. State of Maryland

Issue - Criminal Law - Did the trial court abuse its discretion in denying defense counsel's motion for a mistrial after the State, in a rebuttal closing argument, mischaracterized the statistical significance of the DNA evidence?

Attorney for Petitioner: Amy E. Brennan
Attorney for Respondent: James E. Williams


Tuesday, May 7, 2013:

No. 75  Gail B. Litz v. Maryland Department of the Environment, et al.

Issues – Courts & Judicial Proceedings – (1) Whether the statute of limitations bars a claim against a defendant who has continuously contaminated surface and groundwater for longer than three years, and who continues to contaminate that water? (2) Whether groundwater contamination that polluted surface water is a permanent nuisance notwithstanding that Respondents had entered into a Consent Order which required the Town to abate the nuisance? (3) Whether Petitioner's cause of action for inverse condemnation accrued when the lake was first polluted in 1996 or when her bank foreclosed on her property in 2010? (4) Whether the lower court erred when it held that Petitioner has not shown a "series of acts or course of conduct" that could toll the statute of limitations?

Attorney for Petitioner: G. Macy Nelson
Attorneys for Respondent: Steven R. Johnson and K. Nicole Nesbitt

No. 82  Bernard Dixon, etc., et al. v. Ford Motor Company

Issues – Torts – (1) Did CSA err in concluding that the trial court abused its discretion by admitting under Rule 5-702 the opinion of Plaintiff's medical expert, Dr. Welch, because Dr. Welch's testimony did not satisfy CSA's newly-articulated model of "probabilistic causation"? (2) Did the trial court abuse its discretion by admitting the opinion of Dr. Welch that Mrs. Dixon's alleged secondary exposure to asbestos through Petitioner's work with Ford brake linings was a substantial contributing factor in her mesothelioma, where that opinion was offered in response to a hypothetical question that assumed facts not in evidence? (3) If admitting this expert witness was error, was it harmless error because of the unchallenged admission of substantively identical testimony by another expert witness and because the jury concluded that the exposure in question was the only substantial contributing factor causing the illness? (4) Did the trial court err by using it's revisory power under Md. Rule 2-535(a) to hold Georgia-Pacific, LLC liable on Ford's cross-claim based on the trial court's conclusion that the jury's verdict that Georgia-Pacific was not liable for Mrs. Dixon's death, but that Ford was so liable, were irreconcilably inconsistent? (5) Did the trial court err in failing to use its revisory power to also enter judgment on Ford's cross-claim against Honeywell? (6) Whether the different treatment of individuals with identical damages under the statutory cap on non-economic damages found at C&JP §11-108 violates the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution and Articles 5, 19, 23, and 24 of the Maryland Declaration of Rights, as interpreted by this Court in Murphy v. Edmonds, 325 Md. 342, 601 A.2d 102 (1992). (7) If Dr. Welch's causation opinions were inadmissible, should final judgment in favor of Ford be rendered, as opposed to merely a new trial? (8) Whether the trial court abused its discretion in denying Ford's Motion for New Trial given that (a) the jury's verdict was inconsistent and against the great weight of the evidence, (b) Plaintiffs' closing arguments were highly improper, and prejudicial and (c) the verdict was shocking?

Attorney for Petitioner: Jonathan Ruckdeschel
Attorneys for Respondent: J. Tracy Walker, IV and Robert Dale Klein

No 102  Georgia-Pacific, LLC v. Jocelyn A. Farrar

Issues - Torts - 1) Does this Court's multi-factor test for determining when duties enforceable in tort are owed to third parties apply to product liability claims and, if so, do product manufacturers have a legal duty to warn household residents of the risks of exposure to toxic materials carried home by workers who did not use the product in question but were exposed indirectly as bystanders? 2) What is the minimum threshold of sufficient evidence that satisfies Balbos' "frequency, proximity, and regularity" test for substantial-factor causation?

Attorney for Petitioner: James L. Shea
Attorney for Respondent: Edward Lilly


On the day of argument, counsel are instructed to register in the Clerk’s Office no later than 9:30 a.m. unless otherwise notified.

After May 7, 2013 the Court will recess until June 5, 2013.