Law and Disorder in Calvert County
DWI Charges Repeatedly Dropped;
Robert Lee Wedding Leads a Charmed Life
Calvert States Attorney Laura Martin Explains Charmed Life of Robert Lee Wedding
“Most journalists (at least those who are interested in fair, non-biased reporting) that I have worked with throughout my years as a prosecutor usually ask for comments prior to writing an article – not afterward. That having been said, I will comment with the following:
In the first case, you discuss (citation numbers: 08X0HGS-08Z0HGS: The DUI citations were entered nolle prosequi because there was insufficient evidence to place the defendant behind the wheel as the driver of the vehicle. As you know, under Maryland law, the State must prove the defendant was operating the vehicle. He pled to the DWS citation. This was not a “plea bargain.” He entered a plea and the Judge sentenced the defendant to what the Judge felt was appropriate under the facts and circumstances of the case.
In the next DWI case you discuss, again, the defendant entered a plea of guilty. The Judge decided the sentence – not the assigned prosecutor.
In the third case involving the Possession of CDS/Oxycodone. Again, the defendant entered a plea of guilty. The Judge decided the sentence. In fact, in that case, which was coupled with a plea to Reckless Endangerment, the State requested an active period of incarceration. The Judge decided otherwise.
In the 2012 Concealed Weapon case, the defendant pled guilty, and the Judge sentenced him to a suspended sentence. When he violated his probation in 2013, the Judge did sentence him to 30 days of his backup time.
As for the assault charges:
CR1O0004240 assault 2/2/11 – this was dismissed because the victim did not appear in Court and did not cooperate with the prosecution of the case.
CR2O00043682- assault. 2/2/11 – the defendant was found not guilty, not because the defense attorney “outmaneuvered” the prosecutor in Court (and, by the way, his name is G. Del Lynch – not Mel Lynch); but rather because the victim invoked his 5th Amendment rights and refused to testify.
CR1O00043807- dangerous weapon intent to injure. 5/2/11 – the defendant was found not guilty because the victim invoked his 5th amendment right and refused to testify.
CR6O00037603- assault. 7/27/09 – this was dismissed at the request of the victim who did not wish to pursue the charges.
Maryland Judiciary Case Search – where you apparently obtained the information for your article – rarely tells the full picture of what occurs in the courtroom. Again, most of the journalists I have known known check and recheck their sources of information prior to going to print. The prosecutors in the Calvert County State’s Attorney’s Office are hardworking and dedicated to the community they serve.”
Laura L. Martin
Calvert County State’s Attorney
(Editor’s Note: Nothing could be more fair to a politician than providing our readers with the unedited verbatim response of that elected official to a news story, even a rather testy politician unaccustomed to explaining official court actions.)
PRINCE FREDERICK, MD. – Robert Lee Wedding, 27, of 12760 Olivet Road in Lusby, Md., was arrested for DUI on Oct. 3, 2015, by Calvert Sheriff’s Deputy P. Mosley at 2:58 am, according to Maryland Court Records. On April 28, 2016, the Calvert County States Attorney dropped all DUI charges except one driving while suspended charge in a plea deal with a taxpayer-provided public defender. The Deal: Probation Before Judgement with 60 days in jail with all 60 days suspended and no fine.
Wedding was charged with driving while suspended on July 3, 2015, by Calvert County Md. Deputy G. Gott at 7:37 pm while he operated a 2000 Ford on Rousby Hall Road near Buckets Bar. Also in the same plea deal as above, Wedding got another free pass from the Calvert County States Attorney with the charge being entered as a guilty plea with Probation Before Judgment.
Another DUI charge, this time placed by Maryland State Trooper C. Megelick on April 18, 2015 at 3:06 am, according to court records, was punted once again by the Calvert County States Attorney who dumped the DUI charge, also in the group dumping of charges on April 28, 2016 in Calvert County District Court. Wedding had failed to appear in court for the DUI charge on Sept. 14, 2015, and a bench warrant was ordered by the Judge resulting in Wedding being locked up and then released from jail on Sept. 18, 2015.
On a drug charge (other than marijuana), Wedding entered a guilty plea to possession on May 19, 2014, and was fined $100 with a year in jail, suspended to no time in jail.
On four counts of reckless endangerment filed by Calvert Deputy Hardesty on Jan. 1, 2014 in Calvert County District Court, Wedding entered a guilty plea on May 19, 2014, in a deal with the Calvert States Attorney. The Deal: 2 years in jail with all the time suspended. No fine, no time. Once again, the taxpayers paid for a public defender to protect Wedding from any consequences of the law while the States Attorney took a powder.
On a charge of driving on a suspended license on Jan. 1, 2014 at 9:27 pm issued by a Calvert Deputy, Wedding entered a guilty plea on May 22, 2014 and this time the deal from the Calvert County States Attorney provided for no jail time and a fine of $42.50 and a verdict of Probation Before Judgement.
Five counts of possession of drugs in jail were all dropped by the Calvert County States Attorney. A charge of a concealed deadly weapon filed on Jan. 7, 2012, resulted in a plea deal with the States Attorney in Calvert District Court on Sept. 21, 2012. In exchange for a guilty plea, jail time of 90 days was provided with all 90 days suspended. Thus, no time, no fine. The taxpayers, chumps that they are, as played by the Maryland Alice in Wonderland Legal System, once again paid for his lawyer. The Maryland Public Defender System was criticized by the Legislative Audit review for failing to obtain the modest fee from the persons they represent, leaving the Public Defender’s Office to be in the hole, more than was expected.
During 2011, Wedding was arrested at various times for fighting and assault and all the charges were either dropped by the Calvert County States Attorney or resulted in a not guilty verdict on May 2, 2011, when Public Defender Mel Lynch out-maneuvered the prosecutors in District Court.
On Oct. 4, 2010, Wedding was charged with intoxicated assault by Deputy Lord and the charges were dropped by the Calvert County States Attorney when faced with having to square off in court with Public Defender Mary Katharine Fowler, who must be a ferocious defense attorney.
In a remarkable achievement for the cause of justice, on Dec. 15, 2010, the Calvert County States Attorney was able to win for a change when Wedding came to court on a charge of disorderly conduct. The result of his guilty plea: ONE DAY IN JAIL! That sentence was not suspended, and he was given credit for one day he had been locked up when he was arrested. Thus, Wedding left court that day a free man.
The States Attorney never posts a reason for dropping charges nor are they required to under the law. Whether or not to drop charges is the sole decision of the prosecutor and they answer to no one. Deals that are cooked up by prosecutors in Maryland often include donations made to the favorite charities of prosecutors, all without public scrutiny or record of any type. The States Attorney is an elected office and therefore only answers to the voters, who rarely have a clue as to what type of job the prosecutor does while in office.
Typically, prosecutors drop charges or make sweet deals for defendants when defendants roll over on drug dealers and provide information to the cops. Drug dealers who have been prosecuted in Calvert County and have their drug trade known to Wedding might be able to figure out what happened to them.
On the other hand, Wedding could possibly be in possession of material that could be handy in a case of blackmail or extortion. Another possibility is that in each and every one of these cases, the law officers lost all evidence, failed to appear in court, lied on the stand or otherwise made a successful criminal prosecution impossible.
Another possibility is the District Court prosecutor is so terribly inept and unprepared that the charges are dumped to save the prosecutor from being embarrassed.
Comment from the Calvert County States Attorney has been requested. When that response is provided, it will be included with this story.