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Maryland Code, Criminal Law § 3-904

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(a) The General Assembly declares that:

(1) the protection and preservation of the home is the keystone of democratic government;

(2) the public health and welfare and the good order of the community require that members of the community enjoy in their homes a feeling of well-being, tranquility, and privacy and, when absent from their homes, carry with them the sense of security inherent in the assurance that they may return to the enjoyment of their homes;

(3) the practice of picketing before or about residences and dwelling places causes emotional disturbance and distress to the occupants;

(4) the purpose of this practice is to harass the occupants of the residences and dwelling places;

(5) without resort to this practice, full opportunity exists, and under the provisions of this article will continue to exist, for the exercise of freedom of speech and other constitutional rights;  and

(6) the provisions of this section are necessary in the public interest to avoid the detrimental results described in this subsection.

(b) This section does not prohibit:

(1) picketing or assembly in connection with a labor dispute, as defined in § 4-301 of the Labor and Employment Article ;

(2) picketing in a lawful manner of a person's home when it is also the person's sole place of business;  or

(3) holding a meeting or assembly on any premises commonly used for the discussion of subjects of general public interest.

(c) A person may not intentionally assemble with another in a manner that disrupts a person's right to tranquility in the person's home.

(d)(1) A person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and on conviction is subject to imprisonment not exceeding 90 days or a fine not exceeding $100 or both.

(2) Each day on which a violation of this section occurs is a separate violation.

(e) In addition to the penalty provided in subsection (d) of this section, a circuit court:

(1) may enjoin conduct proscribed by this section;  and

(2) in the proceeding for injunctive relief, may award damages, including punitive damages, against any person found guilty of violating this section.

Cite this article: - Maryland Code, Criminal Law § 3-904 - last updated December 31, 2021 |

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