What You Should Know About Criminal Law In Maryland
Anyone facing criminal charges has many questions they need answered. After over 15+ years as a criminal defense attorney and experience as a former prosecutor, attorney Kathleen Kirchner has answers to frequently asked questions about criminal offenses.
Should a person speak with a police officer when arrested?
The short answer is “no.” The reason is written out in the Miranda warning: “Anything you say, can and will be used against you in a court of law.” Even if you are not under arrest, your words, statements and actions are potential weak spots for law enforcement to probe.
Every year, across Annapolis and Anne Arundel County, throughout Maryland, and the United States as a whole, police arrest people for crimes they did not commit. Many of those people may have spoken with the police with the best intentions in mind, but the police used those intentions against them.
Consequences of a criminal conviction go beyond fines and jail time. What does this mean?
While the most obvious consequences of a criminal conviction are fines and jail time, the most long-lasting effects are less tangible. A criminal conviction will reflect on your criminal record and that record will follow you across state lines and well after your sentence ends. This can affect your:
- Future employment status
- Professional license
- Housing opportunities
- Loan applications
Many people consider pleading guilty to a DUI to save time and money on their defense. However, a guilty plea, even with no time served, can disrupt your life in the long term.
What actions are considered probation violations in Maryland?
If you are on probation, you still must meet certain expectations and requirements to maintain your freedom. While minor violations such as a missed meeting with your probation officer may lead to short stints in jail; a judge may revoke probation entirely for other major violations, such as:
- Getting arrested
- Violating court orders
- Failing to register as a sex offender for certain sex offenses
Is recreational marijuana legal in Maryland?
While medical marijuana is legal, as of this writing, Maryland has not legalized recreational marijuana. Possessing 10 grams or less of marijuana is considered a civil offense and punishable by fines that increase with each repeat offense.
Kathleen M. Kirchner, Esq., Can Answer Your Questions
Your situation is unique, and you deserve the personal attention and guidance of a skilled, experienced attorney. Contact Kathleen M. Kirchner, Esq., by calling 410-970-0304 or sending an email, to schedule a free consultation.
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