Articles Posted in Repeat Offenders

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As an Aggressive Baltimore Maryland DUI/DWI Attorney I have represented hundreds of people who were charged with their second, third or even fourth DUI or DWI. These individuals are known in the legal system as repeat DUI/DWI offenders. These are very serious matters in which the defendant faces the very real possibility of incarceration even for a second offense. For instance, I wrote about a case in Baltimore City recently where a defendant, who was represented by an attorney who does not appear in criminal court on a daily basis, received a sentence of four months in jail for a second offense. And this was a case in which there was no accident and the defendant’s prior conviction occurred more than 10 years prior to this case.

Needless to say, repeat DUI/DWI offenders need to take these matters very seriously and make sure that they are represented by an attorney who specializes in these matters. There is a very easy way to do this and that is by checking your attorney out on Maryland Judiciary Case search. http://casesearch.courts.state.md.us/inquiry/inquiry-index.jsp. On this web site an attorney’s court record can be researched to determine whether or not that attorney regularly handles these cases.

I represented a repeat offender in Baltimore County District Court this week who had been to a previous attorney didn’t have very much experience. That attorney told my client that he would have to plead guilty and was likely to do some jail time although he believed that he could get him weekend incarceration. I reviewed the case and immediately recognized that there was a substantial issue surrounding the probable cause, or in this case the lack there of, for the stop. Here are the facts:
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Experienced Baltimore Maryland DUI/DWI Attorney discusses Probation Before Judgment under Maryland Law. For those who are not familiar with the term “probation before judgment” or PBJ, it is a sentencing alternative that the trial judge may utilize in DUI and DWI cases, typically in cases where a person is a first offender. Probation Before Judgment is found in the Criminal Procedure Article (Sect. 6-220) and allows a judge who has found a defendant guilty of a crime, in this case DUI or DWI, to strike that guilty finding and allow a person to serve a period of probation without the conviction on his or her record.

So long as the person does not violate his or her probation the conviction will never go on their record. This disposition is particularly valuable in DUI cases as it spares the defendant the 8 or 12 points that would accrue on the person’s record as a result of the conviction which invariable leads to action, including possible suspension or revocation of a person’s driver’s license, by the Motor Vehicle Administration.
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A new list ranking U.S. cities with the the most drunk driving offenders only confirms what most experienced Baltimore criminal defense attorneys already new-Baltimore has made the list. Charm City came in at #18 on the list appearing on Insurance.com.

The list ranks the number of drivers with alcohol related convictions among the top most populous cities in the U. S. San Diego ranked No. 1, followed by San Jose, Charlotte, Phoenix and Columbus, Ohio.

The only surprising thing to me about the list is Baltimore did not rank higher. I suspect that is because either PBJs are not reported or many offenders find a way to beat the charges.
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As a Baltimore Maryland DUI/DWI Attorney I often represent people in DUI/DWI cases who have previously been convicted of a DUI or DWI in the past. These defendants are known as repeat or subsequent offenders in courthouse vernacular. Over the past few years prosecutors have begun to seek and judges have started to impose, harsher and harsher penalties including incarceration, even for defendants with only one prior offense. It is now pretty common for second offenders to receive 30 days or more and defendants with two or more prior convictions to serve sentences of six months or longer.

I blogged about a case a few weeks ago that I got involved after the sentence had been imposed and tried unsuccessfully to reverse the damage. In that case the defendant did not get into an accident, blew a .16 and had only one prior occurring 11 years prior to the second. He received a sentence of 4 months to serve in the Baltimore City Jail after the case was badly mishandled by his attorney. I represented a similarly situated second offender in the exact same court last week with a completely different outcome. Here are the facts.
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As a Baltimore Maryland DUI/DWI Lawyer I handle DUI’s almost every day in the District Courts of Baltimore City and Baltimore County. Because I am always in court I am often in a position to watch other attorneys handle, and in many cases mishandle, DUI cases. I have blogged many times in the past about these cases usually positing the question, “are you being represented by the right lawyer”.

I recently got involved in a DUI case that was badly mishandled by another attorney in Baltimore City Circuit Court. Here are the facts:
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https://www.mdattorney.com/lawyer-attorney-1301140.htmlhttps://www.mdattorney.com/lawyer-attorney-1301140.htmlSome of the most difficult Maryland DUI/DWI cases that Maryland DUI/DWI Attorneys are called upon to handle are cases in which the offender has prior convictions for Driving Under the Influence or Driving While Impaired. These people are known as “repeat offenders” and are, as one would expect, generally treated far more harshly than people charged for the first time. State’s Attorney’s typically seek jail terms for people with one or more prior convictions and file enhanced penalties which allow for sentences of up to 3 years instead of just 1 year which is the maximum penalty if the State has not filed the enhanced penalties. This week I kept an offender with four prior convictions out of jail in spite of the fact that the State had a virtually bullet proof case against him. I will explain momentarily but first a few general observations about representing repeat offenders in Maryland.
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Any Experienced, Aggressive Maryland DUI/DWI Attorney will tell you that courts in Maryland and throughout the nation are getting tougher and tougher on people convicted or even charged with multiple offenses for Driving Under the Influence or Driving While Impaired by Alcohol. People in this situation are increasingly being hit with significant bails and ultimately increasing long prison terms. No longer are the days that a person charged with his or her second or third offense can count on being released on their personal recognizance and receiving probation.

A particularly shocking example of this trend is the DUI/DWI case that I was hired for on Tuesday. The client was picked up for DUI/DWI on Sunday night. He allegedly made a right turn on red at an intersection where doing so was prohibited. He pulled over immediately and was totally cooperative and polite throughout the investigation. After not performing the field sobriety tests to the satisfaction of the officer he was arrested and taken to Central Booking. Sometime on Monday morning he saw a court commission who set his bail at $10,000.

At this point his wife attempted to post their home for the bail but was told by the commissioner that they had insufficient equity. The reason for this is that the court calculates the equity in a home by subtracting the outstanding mortgage from the tax assessment value of the home. The tax assessment value is almost always substantially less than the market value of the home.
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