First hearing in Leopold case scheduled for Wed. afternoon

The first court hearing in the corruption case of Anne Arundel County Executive John R. Leopold is scheduled to take place this afternoon.

The hearing is a scheduling conference, where lawyers typically set a timeline for other hearings. Leopold is not required to attend.

Leopold, a Republican, was charged earlier this month by the Maryland State Prosecutor with four counts of misconduct in office and one count of misappropriation of county funds. An indictment alleged that Leopold directed his taxpayer funded security detail to perform personal and political tasks, including arranging frequent sexual encounters with a county employee and investigating his political opponents.

Leopold has vowed to fight the charges.

Retired Howard County Judge Dennis M. Sweeney, has been assigned to the case. Sweeney presided over the 2009 corruption trial of former Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon, a Democrat.

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