JOSEPH LEON HALL, JR.
STATE OF MARYLAND
Argued February 11, 2014.
Circuit Court for Baltimore City. Case Nos. 108315045 & 108345048.
Michael T. Torres, Assistant Public Defender (Paul B. DeWolfe, Public Defender, Baltimore, md) on brief FOR PETITIONER.
Robert Taylor, Jr., Assistant Attorney General, (Douglas F. Gansler, Attorney General of Maryland, Baltimore, MD) on brief FOR RESPONDENT.
Barbera, C.J., Harrell, Battaglia, Greene, Adkins, McDonald, Watts, JJ. Opinion bye Watts, J.
[437 Md. 536] Watts, J.
We decide whether the Circuit Court for Baltimore City (" the circuit court" ) abused its discretion in giving an " anti-CSI effect" jury instruction, and, if so, whether the abuse of discretion was harmless. We hold that the circuit court abused its discretion in giving the " anti-CSI effect" jury instruction; nonetheless, we are satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt that the abuse of discretion was harmless.
The State, Respondent, charged Joseph Leon Hall, Jr. (" Hall" ), Petitioner, with armed carjacking and other crimes. In the circuit court, a jury tried Hall.
At trial, as a witness for the State, John Kim (" Kim" ) testified as follows. On October 29, 2008, Kim was walking in the 800 block of Hollins Street in Baltimore City. Hall and another man approached and pointed guns at Kim. Hall and
the other man with a gun told Kim " to get down on the ground," and Kim obeyed. Hall and the other man with a gun took Kim's wallet, keys, and other effects. Kim stood up, and a third male (" the teenager" ), appearing to be in his late teens, approached. Hall " forced" Kim to lead the way to where Kim's car was parked. Using Kim's keys, Hall unlocked the doors and got into the driver's seat. ...