Journalist's Guide

Initial Appearance : The first appearance of a defendant before a judicial officer by reason of execution of a warrant or before the court, in person or by an attorney, in response to a summons. Insanity Plea : A claim by a defendant that they are not criminally responsible (NCR) for a criminal act due to insanity. Interstate Detainer : An arrest warrant issued on a charging document in another state and lodged with a Maryland correctional institution where a defendant is detained, to ensure continued detention until delivery to the custody of the other state for prosecution on the pending charges. Intrastate Detainer : An arrest warrant issued on a Maryland charging document and lodged with a Maryland correctional institution where a defendant is in custody for the same or another offense, to ensure continued detention until processing on the charges underlying the warrant. Jointly and Severally : Acting together or separately; anyone so liable can sue or be sued with or without others joining in the action. Judgment : The final order of a court; in a criminal case, the conviction and sentence constitute the judgment, so there is no judgment until sentence is imposed. Judgment of Acquittal : A judgment entered by a court on a determination the state’s evidence is insufficient to support a conviction and, thus, insufficient to go to the jury. Judicial notice : A court’s recognition of the truth of basic facts without formal evidence. Jurisdiction : The authority by which courts receive and decide cases. Appellate Jurisdiction: the authority a higher court has to review cases decided or pending in a lower court; in Maryland, the Court of Appeals, the Court of Special Appeals, and the Circuit Courts. General Jurisdiction: the unlimited authority over cases brought before the court to decide rights and grant remedies available under the law in Maryland, the Circuit Courts. Limited Jurisdiction: the authority over only particular types of cases or cases under a prescribed amount in controversy or seeking only certain types of relief, in Maryland the District Court and Orphans’ Courts. Juvenile Waiver : A procedure by which a charge(s) against a minor is transferred from a juvenile to adult court (compare “reverse waiver”). Lesser Included Offense : A crime composed of some, but not all of the elements of a greater crime; commission of the greater crime automatically includes commission of the lesser included offense. Mandamus : A court order compelling an individual to fulfill an official ministerial duty. Mandate : A judgment issued on the decision of an appellate court.


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