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RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 13748
Experience:  Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
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Hello, I am the victim of assault. The matter is scheduled

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I am the victim of assault. The matter is scheduled for court tomorrow. On today, I was advised by the States Attorney's Office that she would enter a nolle pros. The Attorney has done no work on my case. I feel strongly about the matter and want to continue the pursuit of justice. What are my options? Can I contest the entering of a nolle pros at tomorrow's court hearing? Can I choose to represent myself. Can I file ineffective assistance of counsel?

I believe the states attorneys office is prejudice against me. Although I am the victim in this assault matter, the same states attorneys office is currently prosecuting me for an unrelated charge.
Thank you for your question.

Unfortunately, you cannot claim ineffective assistance of counsel as the Assistant State Attorney working this case is not your lawyer, specifically but a lawyer for the state. Additionally, as it is the state who is charged with the ability to prosecute those suspected of committing crimes (and therefore, also their decision as to what cases can be successfully prosecuted and which cannot) you cannot prosecute this person yourself, though you could file a civil suit against them for any damages you suffered, such as medical bills, time missed off work, etc.

A prosecutor is not required to provide an explanation or justification of any decision declining to prosecute with any matter, because as stated above, they have prosecutorial discretion.

When the prosecution declines to act, the victim's remedy is the civil court against the person that assaulted you.

I am sorry I cannot tell you otherwise.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

How and where do I obtain information about filing a civil claim? Also, Can I make the fact that I will be filing a civil claim against the person who assaulted me known on the record in court tomorrow?

Also the assault occurred while at work. I filed a workers compensation claim. How bad does a nolle pros affect the workers compensation case.

Thank you for your reply.

For bringing a possible civil suit, you'd want to discuss the matter with a personal injury lawyer. To assist you in finding a lawyer, you should contact your local county bar association (or the one closest to your county, if your county doesn't have one). A complete listing of county bar associations in Maryland can be found here:

You may also want to look into filing a claim for compensation with the Maryland Criminal Injuries Compensation Board:

Now, with respect to the civil suit, I cannot say for certain, as I do not practice in worker's compensation, but the fact that you filed a worker's compensation claim may limit your ability to file against your attacker (lest you get "two bites of the apple", if you understand what I'm saying). That is something to discuss in consultation with a lawyer. Many lawyers offer a free or low cost initial consultation, as well, so it may cost you little or nothing to discuss a possible civil claim with a lawyer.

As for mentioning it in court tomorrow, you won't get the chance, most likely. If the hearing lasts 5 minutes, that's long. What will happen is the judge will call the case, the prosecutor will stand up, announce that they are dismissing the matter, and that's it. It's literally done in 60 seconds.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

It seems there has to be some checks and balances as to how a States Attorney decides what cases to prosecute. Again the States Attorney decided not prosecute without requesting/reviewing an available surveillance video of the assault or the completed internal investigative report. I strongly feel I was assaulted. I should have some measure of the case was reviewed properly.

Unfortunately, there is not. As I said, they have discretion when reviewing cases and get to make the decision as to which cases are strong enough to move forward and which are not. I'm not disputing your claim that you were assaulted, just telling you that they are entitled to final say.

You can contact the State Attorney's Office and speak with this attorney's supervising attorney and ask for a case review, but I honestly would not expect them to change their decision.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I thank you for the advice.

You're very welcome. I would appreciate you remembering to give me a positive rating as that is the only way I am compensated for my time.
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