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Opinion Digests

Va. Cir.: No prejudice resulted from plea agreement withdrawal (access required)

Despite the defendant’s previous waiver of a preliminary hearing related to drug charges against him, he was not entitled to enforcement of an alleged oral plea agreement with a new prosecutor in his case. Background Defendant Sophann Mao was arrested ...

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Va. Cir.: Misdemeanor conviction bars felony records expungement (access required)

Possession of marijuana with intent to distribute – a misdemeanor – is a lesser-included offense of the felony of distribution of more than half an ounce but less than 5 pounds of marijuana. A petitioner convicted of the misdemeanor was ...

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CAV: Failure to advise of child’s first communion date didn’t merit contempt (access required)

The trial court erred in holding a father in contempt for failing to notify the mother of their child of the date of their son’s first communion. Background Father and Mother, who separated in 2008, are subject to a final ...

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EDVA: Vandalized hotel can try denied insurance claim (access required)

Genuine disputes of material fact precluded summary judgment as to whether an insurance company improperly denied coverage for property damage after vandals cut a water line in a hotel undergoing renovations. The insurer claimed that the hotel owners had misrepresented ...

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4th Cir.: Company’s agreement with feds preserved privilege for subsidiary’s disclosures (access required)

A written agreement between a corporation and the government preserved the company’s attorney-client privilege and work-product protection for information that the general counsel of a subsidiary entity disclosed to the government. Background Several years ago, federal prosecutors opened a grand ...

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4th Cir.: Court costs not a “penalty” that supports removal (access required)

An immigrant was not rendered ineligible for cancellation of removal based solely on $100 in court costs that he paid after pleading guilty to a misdemeanor. Such costs, which are not discretionary and sometimes are imposed by the court clerk, ...

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4th Cir.: MS-13 murder and related convictions upheld (access required)

Six defendants tried together were properly convicted of murder and attempted murder offenses related to their gang membership. Their convictions were upheld despite challenges to prosecutorial conduct, jury instructions, evidence admitted at trial, joint trial, access to counsel, warrantless cell ...

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4th Cir.: City worker’s Title VII retaliation claim revived (access required)

Fired the day after asking for grievance paperwork, a black employee reasonably believed she was subject to a hostile work environment that was attributable to her employer. The district court erred in granting summary judgment against her. Background In August ...

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