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New judge to Md. Special Appeals court

Ruben Castaneda

Circuit Court Judge Michele D. Hotten, who has served on the bench in Prince George's for 16 years, has been appointed by Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) to the Court of Special Appeals, the state's second-highest court.

The governor announced the appointment late Friday. Hotten, 56, will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Judge James P. Salmon.

In a statement, O'Malley said Hotten will bring to the appellate court "a broad range of legal expertise, a true commitment to pubilc service, and a dedication to upholding the laws of the state."

Hotten is known as a hard worker, a trait which will serve her well on the Court of Special Appeals. Typically, the appellate court issues more than 1,400 opinions a year.

"She's been appointed to the hardest-working court in the state, and that will suit Judge Hotten fine because she has a tremendous work ethic," said Timothy F. Maloney, a Greenbelt-based attorney who does criminal defense and civil work.

For the past 15 years, Hotten has served as a Circuit Court judge in Prince George's, presiding over serious criminal trials as well as civil cases. Before she was named to the Circuit Court bench, Hotten served for a year as a District Court judge.

Before being appointed to the bench, Hotten worked as an assistant state's attorney in Prince George's.

Hotten has also worked in private practice, working on cases that involved medical malpractice claims, insurance cases, criminal defense and administrative law issues.

Hotten is a past president of the Prince George's County Bar Association and a past president of the J. Franklyn Bourne Bar Association. In 2008, she received the Daily Record's Leadership in Law award.

Hotten earned her bachelor's degree from the University of South Florida and her law degree from the Howard University School of Law.
In 2008, Hotten sentenced a man who was convicted of murdering two elderly women in a Suitland flower shop to life in prison.

-- Ruben Castaneda

By Ruben Castaneda  |  July 26, 2010; 3:10 PM ET
Categories:  From the Courthouse , Maryland , Ruben Castaneda  | Tags: Court of Special Appeals, Maryland judiciary  
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