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Baltimore Criminal Law Blog

What are the different types of protective orders in Maryland?

Maryland has long seen the benefits of allowing victims of domestic abuse to obtain court orders that prohibit abusers from having contact with their victims. Currently, Maryland recognizes three types of protective orders: interim, temporary and final.

The interim protective order is really a method of last resort. Victims seeking protection from the courts when the court clerk's offices at both the circuit and district courts are closed can still receive an interim effective order in some cases. Typically, a victim will seek out the nearest district court commissioner and appeal to him or her for assistance. However, a personal representative of the victim can also ask for relief.

Statistics on drug trafficking offenses

Drug trafficking is a serious crime and it has stiff penalties. This is especially true if it is charged at the federal level. Here are some statistics on federal drug trafficking, as well as some other federal drug offenses.

-- Six types of drugs accounted for almost all of the drug trafficking cases. Those drugs were cocaine, methamphetamine, marijuana, crack cocaine, heroin, and oxycodone.

Aggravated assault: Defining this violent crime

Assault generally means an unlawful attempt by someone to inflict harm on another person. Aggravated assault, according to Federal Bureau of Investigation's Uniform Crime Reporting Program, is an attack on a person to inflict aggravated or severe bodily injury. In most cases, there is a weapon involved that would likely result in great bodily harm or death.

Attempted aggravated assault also usually involves the threat to use or to display a weapon. Such as weapon may be a gun, a knife or something else that could produce serious bodily injury.

Baltimore bar owner convicted in 1979 child sex abuse case

A 65-year-old Baltimore bar owner was convicted of four counts of sexual child abuse and over 12 counts of third-degree sex offense. The jury found the man not guilty of rape.

In 1979, the alleged female victim in the case was 10 years old. She lived with her mother above Bill's Cafe and said that for over three years, she was sexually abused by the man. The man was charged at the end of 2013 after she remembered the abuse in 2012 and contacted police. One of her own grandchildren was involved in a child abuse investigation and she said that is what triggered her memory of the abuse.

What is the legal definition of homicide?

When people see the word homicide, they often equate it with the word murder. This becomes important in news reports because a homicide will be declared and many reading the report will think that this automatically means a crime has been committed. Despite this widespread belief, that's not actually true.

Technically speaking, any time that a human being is killed, it is a homicide. It is simply the act of taking the life. That doesn't mean it's illegal. For example, if someone breaks into a house with a knife and the homeowner shoots him or her in self-defense, perhaps protecting his or her family, it may be justified. This is still a homicide, but it is not a crime.

What is a protective order and what does it mean for a defendant?

A protective order is granted by the court to keep someone away from another person or persons. It is most commonly ordered in domestic violence cases as a way of protecting an alleged victim from his or her alleged abuser.

In order for the alleged victim to get a protective order, he or she will need to do the following (you'll notice how the alleged abuser will have little say in whether or not the order is issued):

Estimates for deadly DUI charges examined

When caught for drunk driving alone, the penalties may not be that stiff. They differ depending on many different factors, such as how many similar charges you may have on your record. However, the charges can get to be more harsh if you are also involved in an accident, and they go up even higher if someone else is killed in that accident.

These laws are not mandated by the federal government, but work on a state-by-state basis. According to Mothers Against Drunk Drivers, or MADD, the approximate sentence that one would get for a deadly DUI crash in Maryland ranges from zero to five years. This is an estimate, so sentences have been given out that do not fall into this range, but it still gives you a rough idea of what is expected.

Former state delegate to pay $92,000 for drunk boating accident

In August 2012, a now-former Maryland delegate was on the Maghony River on The Legislator, a 26-foot Targa Baha Cruiser. The boat crashed into a 18-foot Bayliner. Eight people were injured in the boating accident, including children. The former delegate was operating The Legislator and was charged with drunken boating. Both operators were charged with "rules of the road" violations, negligence and not registering their boats.

In addition to a conviction for boating DUI, the former delegate had a conviction for drunk driving the next year. He spent 60 days in jail. One of the people injured in the boating accident filed a lawsuit against the ex-delegate, as well as the operator of the other boat. The latter was dismissed in July 2014. The only charge the other operator eventually faced was for not registering his boat.

Prescription drug charges

Prescription drug charges are serious and they come with severe consequences for those who are convicted of them. Furthermore, Maryland police officers are diligent in their monitoring and enforcement programs relating to prescription drug crime in this state.

Authorities keep their eyes out for certain criminal behaviors, which could result in an investigation and an arrest. One of the things they look out for is referred to as doctor shopping. Individuals who doctor shop commonly have several physicians who they go to in order to obtain extra prescriptions for the same pharmaceutical drugs. In these situations, doctors are usually unaware that their patient is taking too much of the drug they are prescribing.

Why would an accuser make up a story of rape?

False allegations of rape can ruin a man's life and it happens more often then you might think. There is little evidence required for such allegations except for the alleged victim's report. According to one website, there are a number of reasons why a woman may falsely report a rape. Here are some of the most common:

-- False allegations of rape can be used to put an ex-husband or ex-boyfriend in jail. It could also be a way for a woman have a current partner out of the picture.