1 N. Charles St., Suite 1301
Baltimore, MD 21201
Phone: 410-244-5444
FAX: 410-934-3208
1
/
3
/

Our Story

Brown Law was formed with a fundamental goal: to provide high-end legal counsel with integrity. We are driven by the understanding that many of our clients face life-altering challenges. We thrive when the stakes are highest. Because of our past success, we are confident that we can deliver for you.

See more

“Mr. Brown saved my life. I owe him everything.”

B.P. (former client),

“We owe C. Justin Brown such a debt of gratitude and there is nothing I can write… that will do justice to how my family and I feel about him and the job he did in representing my brother in a recent criminal defense case.”

J.N. (former client),

“This firm is extremely good at what it does and offers an excellent professional relationship with clients by making them feel at ease even in the most dire situations. The firm rose high above my expectations…”

B.P. (former client),

“I highly recommend this firm . They put in the hard work it takes to win. They really see you as a person not just another client… They keep you well informed and explains everything clearly and listen.

P.W. (former client),

Recent blog posts

Lloyd Hall is Free after 34 years

July 14, 2018
(Photo by Alan Chin)   A Montgomery County Circuit Judge ordered Lloyd Hall to be released from prison on Thursday – immediately – vacating a life-without-parole sentence and ending an injustice that had persisted for 34 years. Hall walked out of the courthouse in a new black suit around 1:15 p.m., and was greeted by a cheering crowd of family and supporters. Hall had been convicted in 1984 for burglary and related offenses. Because he had three prior convictions for burglary and housebreaking, he was sentenced to mandatory life in prison under Maryland’s “three strikes” law. The law considered Hall to be a violent re-offender – even though none of his predicate convictions encompassed any acts of violence. Rather, Hall had struggled with drug abuse and had committed a string of petty offenses to support his habit. At the age of 29, Hall was condemned to live out the remaining days of his life in prison. In a cruel twist that made his fate even more difficult to accept, Maryland soon thereafter changed the law that classified Hall as a violent offender. After Hall’s sentence was imposed, the Legislature changed the “three strikes” rule so that Hall’s predicates were no longer considered crimes of violence. But, for Hall it was too late. He had no way to get back into court. Many years later, Hall came to us seeking help. He was supported by the tireless advocacy of his sister, Carolyn Williams, who had pledged to him many years ago that he would not die in prison. After research and investigation, we filed a post-conviction petition raising a single issue: that Hall’s trial counsel, back in 1987, had been constitutionally ineffective for failing to file a motion seeking a modification of Hall’s sentence. If trial counsel had filed that routine motion, we argued, Hall would have been able to get back into court and obtain a new sentence in light of the changed law. Rather than confront the State with our petition in open court, we decided to negotiate with the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office, and persuade them that relief was merited. Hall had been a model prisoner, he had a supportive family, and he had developed a detailed plan for what he would do upon release. After extensive negotiation and vetting, the Montgomery County State’s Attorney – to his credit – agreed with us that Hall should be granted the relief we were seeking: his immediate release from prison. The final step was to convince the court to honor our bargain. On July 12, 2018, we appeared before Montgomery County Circuit Court Judge Ronald B. Rubin and presented our arguments. In an hour-long hearing in a packed courtroom, Judge Rubin heard from witnesses, including forensic social worker Rebecca Bowman-Rivas, considered the appropriate law, and issued his order. “I order you released, forthwith,” Judge Rubin said.

Adnan Syed Updates

December 14, 2017
September 20, 2018 The Maryland Criminal Defense Attorneys’ Association and the Maryland Office of the Public Defender jointly filed an amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief today in support of Adnan Syed. The brief, authored by Steve Klepper, of Kramon & Graham, is also signed by a group of 16 long-time Maryland criminal defense attorneys. The brief addresses, among other things, the duty of defense counsel to investigate an alibi witness. The brief is available HERE.   September 20, 2018 Today we filed our brief on behalf of Adnan Syed in the Maryland Court of Appeals. To recap, we won a new trial for Adnan more than two years ago. Since that time the State of Maryland has been appealing the ruling granting the new trial. First the State appealed to the Court of Special Appeals (and lost). Now they are appealing to the Court of Appeals, which is the highest court in Maryland. The State, as the Appellant, filed the first brief a month ago. Today’s filing is our response. You can read the filing HERE.   July 27, 2018 First, sorry for the lack of updates on this page. We’ve been busy. There are some developments to report in the Syed case. The Court of Appeals of Maryland — the highest court in the state — has agreed to review the decision of the Court of Special Appeals (which upheld the trial court order granting Adnan Syed a new trial). The Court of Appeals will consider both issues that were before the lower courts: the alibi issue and the cell tower issue. When this appeal is completed — probably about a year from now — the state appellate process will be complete. Barring some unusual event, the only place to go after that will be the United States Supreme Court. We are frustrated that this process has dragged on so long. Syed was granted a new trial more than two years ago, yet he remains in jail. But there is nothing we can do about this; it is the system we live in. The good news is that the last stage of the state appellate process should go relatively quickly. A briefing schedule has already been issued (HERE), and it is expected that oral arguments will take place the first week of December.   May 29, 2018 We just filed (today) our Opposition to the State’s Petition for Writ of Certiorari, and our Conditional Cross-Petition. In this filing we do two things. First, we argue that the State’s petition for writ of certiorari should be denied because that State has presented a fact-based issue that is not meritorious of review. In fact, the facts of this case do not even support the State’s “Issue Presented.” Second, if the State wants to appeal the alibi issue (which we won at the Court of Special Appeals), we are suggesting that the Court of Appeals re-consider the cell tower issue (which the Court of Special Appeals denied on waiver grounds).

Judge Reverses Life Sentence in AA County

October 7, 2018
Brown Law last week won a high-stakes post-conviction proceeding in Anne Arundel County when a Circuit Court Judge found that prosecutors had withheld critical evidence from the defendant. As a result, our client’s life sentence was vacated and a new trial ordered. This marks the sixth time the Firm has reversed a life sentence. The Judge granted the post-conviction petition on three separate grounds: one Brady violation and two claims of ineffective assistance of counsel. The Brady violation was based on the failure of the State to turn over exculpatory evidence. The State had argued to the jury that the defendant had destroyed a computer to hide evidence of a crime. But in fact, the Court found, the police had been in possession of the computer the whole time. The prosecutors never turned over to the defense a report showing that the police had the computer, and that there was no inculpatory evidence on it. The opinion in State v. Martin can be read HERE.

This is why we fight.

December 31, 2017
I get asked the question all the time. Why do you represent criminal defendants? Sometimes I ask myself. But this is why. I have sat in prison visiting booths with inmates serving life sentences whom I believed were innocent. I have stood side by side with guilty defendants who were better human beings than the people judging them. I have seen men plead guilty to crimes they did not commit – and face very long sentences – only to protect the people they loved. I do this because I understand that people make mistakes. I do this because I understand that more often than not our system is not fair, and probably never will be. I do this because even someone accused of the most atrocious crime needs an attorney who will fight like hell. I think if more people had the chance to see it from my side they would understand. Sometimes I wish prosecutors could spend an hour with each of my clients. They might see that some of them are innocent. They might see that some of them are guilty, but deserve to walk free nonetheless. They might start to understand that prison without rehabilitation is nothing but a waste of money and time. And what I do is not a one-way street. My clients have given back. I’ve had clients who were cheated by the system encourage me that the system can work. I’ve had people in the most desperate of situations show me the path to victory. I’ve had clients go away and come back a better person. So happy new year to all my clients, past and present. Keep up the fight, and we’ll see you next year!