Del. Alston’s attorney says no pretrial deal with state prosecutors

September 18, 2012

Prince George’s Del. Tiffany Alston is unlikely to reach a deal with state prosecutors this week that would allow her to avoid a trial on charges that she tried to use campaign money to help pay for her wedding.

Alston’s attorney Raouf M. Abdullah said Tuesday that the first-term legislator has stopped taking painkillers as part of her recovery from foot surgery and “decided she did not wish to enter an agreement.” 

Last week, Alston’s attorneys and State Prosecutor Emmet Davitt told an Anne Arundel County Circuit Court judge that they had “reached an agreement” that would avoid a trial next month on Alston’s alleged misuse of campaign donations.

In June, Alston (D) was convicted on separate charges of using $800 in General Assembly funds to pay an employee of her private law firm. Davitt said in court that the outlines of the deal discussed last week would have resulted in a “total resolution” of both cases.

But Alston’s attorney said Tuesday that the legislator was “not in any position” to consider such a deal last week while she was taking medication. Abdullah said that Alston would instead proceed with plans at a hearing Wednesday afternoon to ask Judge Paul F. Harris Jr. for a new trial in the theft case.

Alston “maintains her innocence in all these matters,” he said.

Maryland’s Constitution requires public officials convicted in such crimes to step down from office once a conviction is final upon sentencing. Harris had agreed to put off Alston’s sentencing until after the second trial.

Davitt declined to comment.

This Post has been updated.

Ann covers legal affairs in the District and Maryland for the Washington Post. Ann previously covered state government and politics in California, New Hampshire and Maryland. She joined the Post in 2005.
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