University of Baltimore Law Forum


The Court of Appeals of Maryland held that a defendant waives review of any issue as to allegedly inconsistent verdicts by failing to object before the verdicts become final and the court discharges the jury. Givens v. State, 449 Md. 433, 486, 144 A.3d 717, 748 (2016). Although the defendant in this case did not request plain error review, the court stated that the alleged inconsistent verdicts were not clear and obvious; therefore the four-factor plain error test was not met. Id. at 482, 144 A.3d at 746.

On November 15, 2011, several people including Dominic Givens ("Givens"), pulled up in a minivan at a playground where five individuals were located. Givens proceeded to rob one victim, taking money and a phone, while the other individuals robbed the additional five victims. The incident escalated when one of the assailants and victim, Marvin Darrell Tomlinson ("Tomlinson") began fighting over a gun. As the other victims fled, Givens grabbed the gun and shot Tomlinson twice, leaving him mortally wounded. He later succumbed to his injuries at the hospital.



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