Kelly v. McCarthy et al
MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge Richard D. Bennett on 3/21/2017. (c/m 3/22/17)(kr2, Deputy Clerk)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF MARYLAND
ANTHONY QUINTIN KELLY, #352736
STATE OF MARYLAND
CIVIL ACTION NO. RDB-17-765
On March 20, 2017, Plaintiff Anthony Quintin Kelly, who is currently confined at the North
Branch Correctional Institution, filed this 42 U.S.C.
1983 civil rights action seeking declaratory
and injunctive relief, as well as compensatory, monetary and punitive damages against the State of
Maryland, Montgomery County, Maryland State's Attorney John McCarthy, and Assistant State's
Attorney Kathy Knight.
He alleges that he was subject to malicious prosecution, false arrest, and
false imprisonment when Defendants acted with "evil motive" or "callous( ness]" to his constitutional
rights by indicting, prosecuting, and sentencing him.
ECF No. I. Although Kelly claims his
Complaint was accompanied by a Motion for Leave to Proceed In Forma Pauperis, no indigency
motion was attached to the filing. The Complaint shall nonetheless be summarily dismissed.
The state court docket shows that in October of 2002, Kelly was charged with first-degree
rape, first-degree assault, and use ofa handgun in the commission ofa felony or crime of violence in
Slale v. Kelly, Case No. 96433 (Cir. Ct. for Montgomery Cnty.). In May of2003, he was charged
with first degree rape and robbery with a dangerous and deadly weapon in Slale v. Kelly, Case No.
97760 (Cir. Ct. for Montgomery Cnty.). Also in May 01'2003, he was charged with two counts of
murder, first-degree burglary, robbery with a dangerous and deadly weapon, two counts of use ofa
firearm in the commission of a felony/violent crime, second-degree burglary, and theft in State v.
Kelly, Case No. 97749C (Cir. Ct. for Montgomery Cnty.). At the conclusion of pre-trial hearings, on
June 3, 2004, Kelly was declared incompetent to stand trial in all three cases. On February 5, 2008,
however, the Circuit Court determined that Kelly was competent to stand trial in all three cases. On
June 11,2008, ajury found Kelly guilty by ajury of first-degree rape, first-degree assault, and use of
a handgun in the commission ofa felony or crime of violence in State v. Kelly, Case No. 96433. On
July 2, 2008, a jury found him guilty of first-degree rape in State v. Kelly, Case No. 97760C.
August 4, 2008, ajury found Kelly guilty of two counts of first-degree murder, first-degree burglary,
armed robbery, and two counts of use of a handgun in the commission of a felony or crime of
violence in State v. Kelly, Case No. 97749C. On September 8, 2008, Kelly was sentenced in all three
cases to four consecutive life sentences plus additional twenty- and eighty-year consecutive terms.
Kelly noted a pro se appeal from all three judgments of conviction to the Court of Special
Appeals of Mary land. On July 10,2009, the appeals were dismissed on grounds of non -compliance
with the rules of appellate procedure.
Kelly's request for further review of the dismissal of his
appeal was denied by the Court of Appeals of Maryland on July 21, 2009.
md. us/casesearch/inq uirySearch.j is.
Kelly's Complaint for damages may not proceed for a number of reasons. First, his claim
against the prosecutors is not colorable.
Both McCarthy and Knight are immune from Kelly's
1983 claims for damages. A prosecutor is a quasi-judicial officer who enjoys absolute immunity
when performing prosecutorial, as opposed to investigative or administrative, functions. See Imbler
v. Pachtman, 424 U.S. 409, 430-31 (1976); Springmen v. Williams, 122 F.3d 211,212-13 (4th Cir.
1997); Lyles v. Sparks, 79 F.3d 372,376-77 (4th Cir. 1996). Decisions regarding whether and who
to prosecute fall within those prosecutorial functions.
1983 lawsuit may not be filed against the State of Maryland. Neither a state nor
an agency ofa state is a Aperson@ within the meaning of42 U.S.c.
1983. See Will v. Michigan
Dep=t a/State Police, 491 U.S. 58, 64-65 & 70-71 (1989). Moreover, the State of Maryland is
immune from liability under the Eleventh Amendment from a
1983 suit in federal court without
regard to the nature of the relief sought. See Pennhurst State School & Hospital v. Halderman, 465
U.S. 89,101-01 (1984);
c.H. v. Oliva,
226 F.3d 198,201 (3rd Cir. 2000).1
Finally, to the extent that Kelly's civil rights claim raises a challenge to the constitutionality
of his incarceration, it is not appropriately before the Court. Under Heckv. Humphrey, 512 U.S. 477,
486-87 (1994) a claim challenging a prosecution is barred, as a judgment in Kelly's favor would
necessarily imply the invalidity of his criminal convictions. See also Edwards v. Balisok, 520 U.S.
For the aforementioned reasons, Kelly's Complaint shall be dismissed for the failure to state
To the extent that Kelly's civil rights claim for damages raises a challenge to the
constitutionality of his incarceration, it is not appropriately before the Court. Under Heck v.
Humphrey, 512 U.S. 477, 486-87 (1994) a claim for damages challenging a prosecution is barred, as
a judgment in Kelly's favor would necessarily imply the invalidity of his criminal convictions.
RJCHARD D. BENNETT
UNITED STATES DISTRlCT JUDGE
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