Argument Schedule -- March, 2015


September Term, 2014


Monday, March 2, 2015:

No. 92 Kathy Fuller, et al. v. Republican Central Committee of Carroll County, Maryland

Issues – State Government – 1) Does Article 3, Section 13 of the Constitution of Maryland (“Section 13”) prohibit a party central committee from submitting more than one name to the Governor to fill a single vacancy in the General Assembly? 2) Is a temporary restraining order appropriate relief to prevent a party central committee from violating Section 13.

Attorney for Appellant: H. Mark Stichel
Attorneys for Appellee: Dirk D. Haire and Jessica V. Haire


Friday, March 6, 2015:

Bar Admissions

No. 64 County Council of Prince George's County, Maryland, Sitting as the District Council v. Zimmer Development Company

Issues – Zoning and Planning – 1) Did CSA err in its statutory construction of the “Regional District Act” (“RDA”) by holding that the District Council is vested with appellate rather than original jurisdiction over Planning Board preliminary determinations with respect to regional and legislative zoning matters? 2) Did CSA err by applying County Council of Prince George’s County v. Curtis Regency, 121 Md. App. 123, even though it involved a preliminary planning matter rather than a legislative, regional zoning matter which conflicts with this Court’s holding in County Council of Prince George’s County v. Dutcher, 365 Md. 399? 3) Whether the County Council’s 1996 enactment of the County Code (“PGCC”) § 27-132(f), providing that the District Council “shall exercise original jurisdiction” in its “review [of] a decision made by … the Planning Board,” is consistent with the provisions of the RDA? 4) Whether CSA’s holding improperly transfers the legislative, regional zoning authority expressly provided to the District Council by the RDA to the Planning Board, a subordinate agency? 5) Whether CSA’s holding violates the separation of powers doctrine because the judiciary has divested the legislative body of its legislative authority over regional zoning, including the applications related to zoning map amendments sought here, specifically designated by State law? 6) Whether CSA nullified the District Council’s statutory right to “remand” a case to the Planning Board for further information, and the District Council’s obligation to issue a “final” decision prior to judicial review, by holding that the District Council is limited after remand to only those issues that were remanded? 7) Assuming, arguendo, that CSA correctly held that the District Council’s standard of review of the Planning Board’s actions is the “arbitrary, capricious, discriminatory or illegal” standard, then whether CSA erred by reinstating the Planning Board’s recommendations as to Zimmer’s applications, instead of remanding for the District Council to apply the correct standard of review?

Attorney for Petitioner: Rajesh A. Kumar
Attorney for Respondent: Timothy F. Maloney

No. 53 State of Maryland v. Derrell Johnson

Issue – Criminal Law – Did CSA err in merging both the kidnapping and robbery sentences into the felony murder sentence, rather than merging only one of them?

Attorney for Petitioner: Gary E. O'Connor
Attorney for Respondent: Piedad Gomez


Monday, March 9, 2015:

No. 63  Tommy Garcia Bonilla v. State of Maryland

Issue – Criminal Law – Did CSA err by affirming the trial court’s judgment that a sentence below a binding plea agreement constitutes an illegal sentence?

Attorney for Petitioner: Erica J. Suter
Attorney for Respondent: Michelle M. Martin

No. 52  Jessica N. Woznicki v. Geico General Insurance Company

Issues – Insurance Law – 1) In an uninsured/underinsured motorist case, did CSA err when it held that as a matter of law the underinsured motorist (UIM) carrier did not waive its right to written notice of a pending settlement with the tortfeasor’s insurance carrier where there was unequivocal testimony from Petitioner’s counsel that he received oral consent to settle from a UIM carrier representative? 2) Did CSA err when it held that the UIM carrier did not bear the burden of proving prejudice arising from the Petitioner’s failure to give written notice of the pending settlement with the tortfeasor’s insurance carrier?

Attorney for Petitioner: Angus R. Everton
Attorney for Respondent: Frank F. Daily

No. 54  Jeannine Morse v. Erie Insurance Exchange

Issue – Insurance Law – When an underinsured motorist insurance company cannot prove prejudice should the law excuse it from paying contracted-for underinsurance benefits because the insured did not strictly comply with the requirements of Md. Code Ann., Cts. & Jud. Proc., § 19-511?

Attorney for Petitioner: Ryan S. Perlin
Attorney for Respondent: Jonathan R. Clark


Tuesday, March 10, 2015:

No. 55  David S. Bontempo, Individually and on behalf of Quotient, Inc. v. Clark J. Lare, et al.

Issues – Corporations and Associations – 1) Does Maryland adhere to the equitable reasonable-expectations employment doctrine or does it subordinate the doctrine to the at-will employment doctrine absent a written agreement guaranteeing continued employment? 2) Did the trial court apply incorrect legal standards in making its rulings on “fraudulent” conduct under §3-413 of the Corporations and Associations Art., petitioner’s constructive-fraud claim, and petitioner’s punitive-damages claim?

Attorney for Petitioner: Geoffrey H. Genth
Attorneys for Respondent: Niccolo N. Donzella and William J. Murphy

No. 62  Jermaine Hailes v. State of Maryland

Issues – Criminal Law – 1) Does C.J.P. § 12-302, which authorizes an appeal by the State from “a decision of a trial court that excludes evidence offered by the State … alleged to have been seized in violation of the Constitution of the United States, the Maryland Constitution, or the Maryland Declaration of Rights,” permit an appeal from the pretrial exclusion of evidence where the evidence was not seized and the constitutional violation will occur only if the State introduces the evidence at trial? 2) Did the victim’s statement of identification constitute a dying declaration where the victim made the statement four days after he was injured, two days after he was told that it would be unlikely if he lived for more than 24 hours, and two years before he died? 3) Does the Sixth Amendment right to confrontation bar the admission of the evidence in this case?

Attorney for Petitioner: Brian L. Zavin
Attorney for Respondent: Carrie J. Williams


Wednesday, March 11, 2015:

Misc. No. 4 State of Maryland, et al. v. G&C Gulf, Inc., et al.

Certified question of law from the Court of Special Appeals

Questions - 1) Whether there is a justiciable controversy between the parties? 2) Whether Md. Code Ann., Transp. (1977, 2012 Repl. Vol., 2013 Supp.)("Transp.") §§ 21-10A-04(a)(3) and 21-10A-04(a)(4) are arbitrary, oppressive, or unreasonable and, thus, unconstitutional under Article 24 of the Maryland Declaration of Rights; and, if so, whether Transp. §§ 21-10A-04(a)(3) and 21-10A-04(a)(4) are severable? 3) Whether Transp. § 21-10A-04(a)(7) is void for vagueness and, thus, unconstitutional under the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution; and, if so, whether Transp. § 21-10A-04(a)(7) is severable?

Attorney for Appellant: Bradley J. Neitzel
Attorney for Appellee: Frederic J. Einhorn

No. 56 State of Maryland v. Eric Yancey

Issue – Criminal Law – Did CSA incorrectly find reversible error where the trial court, after denying the defendant’s request to approach the bench during voir dire examination of two potential jurors, only one of whom was selected to serve on the jury, stated that defense counsel could consult with Yancey before any decision regarding whether to strike a juror was made and found explicitly credible the seated juror’s testimony that she could be “fair and impartial”?

Attorney for Petitioner: Jason J. George
Attorney for Respondent: Amy E. Brennan


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 March 11, 2015 the Court will recess until April 1, 2015.