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Md. court considering same-sex spousal privilege

•  National News     updated  2011/04/25 09:21


A court in Hagerstown is poised to consider whether a woman who legally married her lesbian partner in another jurisdiction can assert the spousal privilege of refusing to testify against her in Maryland, where same-sex marriage isn't allowed.

Lawyers are set to argue their positions Monday during a hearing in a 2010 assault case

Washington County prosecutors want the judge to compel Sharron Saleem to testify about her statement to police that Deborah Snowden pushed her and threatened her with a knife.

A brief filed by Snowden's public defender cites a 2010 opinion by Maryland Attorney General Douglas Gansler that out-of-state, same-sex marriages may be recognized under Maryland law. But Gansler's opinion didn't directly address the question of spousal privilege.


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