2010 Maryland Code
Subtitle 3 - Newly Discovered Evidence
Section 8-301 - Petition for writ of actual innocence.

§ 8-301. Petition for writ of actual innocence.

(a)  Grounds.- A person charged by indictment or criminal information with a crime triable in circuit court and convicted of that crime may, at any time, file a petition for writ of actual innocence in the circuit court for the county in which the conviction was imposed if the person claims that there is newly discovered evidence that: 

(1) creates a substantial or significant possibility that the result may have been different, as that standard has been judicially determined; and 

(2) could not have been discovered in time to move for a new trial under Maryland Rule 4-331. 

(b)  Requirements.- A petition filed under this section shall: 

(1) be in writing; 

(2) state in detail the grounds on which the petition is based; 

(3) describe the newly discovered evidence; 

(4) contain or be accompanied by a request for hearing if a hearing is sought; and 

(5) distinguish the newly discovered evidence claimed in the petition from any claims made in prior petitions. 

(c)  Notice and response to filing.-  

(1) A petitioner shall notify the State in writing of the filing of a petition under this section. 

(2) The State may file a response to the petition within 90 days after receipt of the notice required under this subsection or within the period of time that the court orders. 

(d)  Notice to victim or victim's representative.-  

(1) Before a hearing is held on a petition filed under this section, the victim or victim's representative shall be notified of the hearing as provided under § 11-104 or § 11-503 of this article. 

(2) A victim or victim's representative has the right to attend a hearing on a petition filed under this section as provided under § 11-102 of this article. 

(e)  Hearing.-  

(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, the court shall hold a hearing on a petition filed under this section if the petition satisfies the requirements of subsection (b) of this section and a hearing was requested. 

(2) The court may dismiss a petition without a hearing if the court finds that the petition fails to assert grounds on which relief may be granted. 

(f)  Ruling.-  

(1) In ruling on a petition filed under this section, the court may set aside the verdict, resentence, grant a new trial, or correct the sentence, as the court considers appropriate. 

(2) The court shall state the reasons for its ruling on the record. 

(g)  Burden of proof.- A petitioner in a proceeding under this section has the burden of proof. 

[2009, ch. 744; 2010, chs. 233, 234.] 

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