Maryland

(information last updated Fall 2017)

Ongoing Projects:

State Project:

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) runs a volunteer water quality monitoring program: Stream Waders.  See Stream Waders, Md. Dep’t of Nat. Resources, http://dnr.maryland.gov/streams/Pages/streamWaders.aspx  last visited Apr. 10, 2017).  We were unable to find statutory authority for the program, which DNR appears to have created on its own initiative.

Place of Collection:

Criminal Liability for Trespass Despite Lack of Notice:

In order for entry upon property to constitute trespass, the property must either be “planted with a crop or orchard” or be “posted conspicuously against trespass” by signs or paint marks on trees or posts at road entrances and “adjacent to public roadways, public waterways, and other land adjoining the property.”  Md. Code Ann., Crim. Law §§ 6-402; 6-406(b).

Drone Laws:

Limits:

“Only the State may enact a law or take any other action to prohibit, restrict, or regulate the testing or operation of unmanned aircraft systems in the State.”  Md. Code Ann., Econ. Dev § 14-301.

 

Encourages Depart of Business and Economic Development, University of Maryland, Department of Transportation, and other “interested groups” to work together to evaluate benefits and risks of drones to develop further law/policy in Maryland regarding drones.

Stalking Laws:

Criminal Law:

 “(a) Stalking" defined. -- In this section, "stalking" means a malicious course of conduct that includes approaching or pursuing another where the person intends to place or knows or reasonably should have known the conduct would place another in reasonable fear:

    (1)

        (i) of serious bodily injury;

        (ii) of an assault in any degree;

        (iii) of rape or sexual offense as defined by §§ 3-303 through 3-308 of this article or attempted rape or sexual offense in any degree

        (iv) of false imprisonment; or

        (v) of death; or

    (2) that a third person likely will suffer any of the acts listed in item (1) of this subsection.

(b) Prohibited. -- The provisions of this section do not apply to conduct that is:

    (1) performed to ensure compliance with a court order;

    (2) performed to carry out a specific lawful commercial purpose; or

    (3) authorized, required, or protected by local, State, or federal law.

(c) Applicability. -- A person may not engage in stalking.

(d) Penalty. -- A person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and on conviction is subject to imprisonment not exceeding 5 years or a fine not exceeding $ 5,000 or both.

(e) Sentence. -- A sentence imposed under this section may be separate from and consecutive to or concurrent with a sentence for any other crime based on the acts establishing a violation of this section.”  Md. Code Ann., Crim. Law § 3-802.

Use of Information:

Although incomplete, our research has not found any provisions relating to the use of information collected by citizens in enforcement or administrative/legislative actions.

Evidentiary Standards:

Pleading a Claim:

Requires certification that “there is good ground to support” the claim.  Md. R. Evid. 1-311.

Authentication or Chain of Custody:

 

“The requirement of authentication or identification as a condition precedent to admissibility is satisfied by evidence sufficient to support a finding that the matter in question is what its proponent claims.”  Md. R. Evid. 5-901.

Expert Testimony:

Frye standard, but Maryland court have not rejected the Daubert standard (case-by-case basis).  See Smith v. State, 880 A.2d 288, 304 (2005); Reed v. State, 391 A.2d 364, 367–68 (1978).

Discussion

Please note that this discussion is not moderated by the Emmett Environmental Law & Policy Clinic.