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Right to A Jury Trial in a Criminal Case


It is generally thought that a criminal defendant may only have a jury trial if the crime charged exposes the defendant to more than 90 days of incarceration. While this is true in the District Court of Maryland, it does not apply in the Circuit Court. If the defendant is convicted in the District Court of, for example, driving while impaired, which generally only has a maximum of 60 days of incarceration, and the defendant appeals that matter to the Circuit Court, the defendant is entitled to a jury trial if the defendant so wishes based on the below statute.

Criminal Procedure
ยง 6-101. Right to trial by jury
In a criminal case tried in a court of general jurisdiction, there is no right to a jury trial unless:
(1) the crime charged is subject to a penalty of imprisonment; or

(2) there is a constitutional right to a jury trial for the crime.
MD Code Crim. Proc. 6-101 Right to trial by jury (Maryland Code (2019 Edition))
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