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Brown Law Blog

The Firm recently won an extraordinary victory in a Motion for Modification in Prince George’s County. Our client was one of the youngest individuals ever convicted of murder in the State of Maryland — he was only 14 years old. When he was sentenced, almost 15 years ago, the Judge imposed a term of “life suspend all but 35 years.” Although our client committed a terrible crime, the sentence was very harsh for someone his age. Our more

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We have received extensive media coverage for our efforts to recover $122k for one of our clients in a federal civil forfeiture case. Here are links to some of the recent articles: Baltimore City Paper, “Frisky Business Above the Law, “Did an AUSA Knowingly Produce a Forged Document Just to Get a Forfeiture Judgment?” Baltimore Sun, “MdTA police launch probe of K-9 unit”

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In an extraordinary decision with sweeping consequences to federal drug sentencing, the United States Sentencing Commission has voted unanimously to make the two-point drug reduction for federal prisoners fully retroactive. According to the Commission, the amendment will have an instruction that prohibits any person from getting released until Nov 1, 2015. It is estimated that about 47,000 federal inmates could benefit from this change in the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines. Judges can begin to consider motions

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“We owe C. Justin Brown such a debt of gratitude and there is nothing I can write in this review that will do justice to how my family and I feel about him and the job he did in representing my brother in a recent criminal defense case. Last year, my brother was arrested for possession of large amounts of a controlled substance. We as a family understood the very serious nature of his offense

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A recent Fourth Circuit opinion gives some needed relief for a limited class of federal inmates. Whiteside v. United States opens the door for convicted defendants to bring post-conviction claims, under 28 U.S.C. § 2255, based on their erroneous classification as career offenders. This is likely to have the most impact on individuals who were sentenced as a career offender based on Maryland second degree assault. Criminal defendants with two prior qualifying convictions – for

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Sometimes as a defense attorney we need to do the police’s job for them. That is exactly what happened in a case in which one of our clients was accused of breaking into a parked car in front of his gym. By many standards this was not a huge case, but for an accountant with no criminal record, it was. We proved his innocence and the State dropped the charges. The case started when a

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The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Baltimore (and other offices around the county) has announced a new policy, effective March 13, in which certain drug offenders will receive a 2-level downward departure on the drug quantity chart. This is fantastic news and it aligns with imminent changes to the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines. Statistically, this amounts to shorter sentences by about 11 months per drug offender. The move is largely in response to overcrowded federal prisons, which

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It is a sad state of affairs when Debo Adegbile cannot be confirmed to head the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. The Senate last week rejected his appointment – after President Obama nominated him. What is sad is the reason why he was not approved, despite his stellar credentials. He was not approved because, when he was head of the NAACP legal defense education fund (the same post Thurgood Marshall once held), the NAACP took

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A new law that would reduce drug sentences passed a major Senate hurdle this week with bipartisan support. It still has a long way to go before it will become law, but it is off to a good start. The Smarter Sentencing Act, which passed the Senate Judiciary Committee, would take some of the sting out of federal drug sentencing. It would do so in three ways: First, it would expand eligibility for the drug

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The Law Office of C. Justin Brown won a $50,000 jury verdict in Baltimore City for a 13-year-old boy who alleged that he was beaten by police, falsely arrested and then illegally detained. The Jury found that Baltimore City Police Officer Dale Mattingly, Jr., falsely arrested, falsely imprisoned, and violated the constitutional rights of the Client. The Client alleged a story that is all to familiar in Baltimore: He was walking down the street, doing

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