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Posted at 12:44 PM ET, 08/02/2012

Anne Arundel County Executive John R. Leopold’s trial postponed

An Anne Arundel County judge Thursday postponed the trial of the county’s chief executive John R. Leopold to give his defense more time to prepare.

Leopold was indicted in March on charges of misusing his office for personal and political purposes. Leopold’s trial was scheduled to begin Sept. 4, but his attorneys said they need additional time to gather information about the conduct of other elected officials in Maryland.

The Office of the State Prosecutor has alleged that Leopold used his security detail to do personal tasks, conduct research about his political opponents and arrange sexual liaisons. Leopold’s attorneys made the case in asking for a postponement that elected officials in Maryland routinely rely on security details for transport to personal and political events.

“It would appear that the defendant is the first elected official to be singled out for alleged misuse of county or state personnel despite public accounts of other elected and appointed officials being afforded the identical treatment,” according to the motion filed by attorney Bruce Marcus.

The state prosecutor’s investigation has already led to the departure of the county’s police chief, James Teare. Police officers had complained to Teare about Leopold’s conduct, according to the indictment, but prosecutors said, “no effective action was taken by the chief.”

A new date for the trial was not immediately set, according to a court spokesperson.

By  |  12:44 PM ET, 08/02/2012

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