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Are DUI Penalties Tough Enough for Maryland Officials?

dui punishmentA Maryland delegate, Don Dwyer Jr., proposed a bill in February to make sentences harsher for those charged with a DUI who occupy offices or are public officials. Though the bill didn’t gain a lot of traction in the senate, it stands as something that made a lot of officials start to think. Since Dwyer had been accused of two alcohol related offenses in the past two years, he’s one of the most qualified to speak about the issue – interestingly enough, he prefers harsher punishments, stating, “[Officials] are held to a higher standard, and [they’re] not an average Joe.” Dwyer spent 30 weekends in a detention center after his drunk driving incident and he thinks that his penalty (or 60 consecutive days) should be the base for what public officials should have to deal with after committing a crime like DUI. He also proposed that officials should have to have a blow and go (“ignition interlock system”) for a minimum of 18 months and attend an alcohol rehabilitation program in addition.

Most of the house and senate thought this proposition was a little steep (surprise, surprise) and not well thought out. Some did back him, though, and believed that the penalty should be a little bit steeper for our Maryland officials. They didn’t agree with his exact method of punishment, but it’s the general idea that counts. Should public officials be held to a higher standard? Probably so. They’re supposed to lead by example. Shouldn’t those who are making the laws have to abide by them the same way any other citizens do? It seems that instead of having to suffer tougher consequences, most times our officials spend less time in jail and deal with lighter penalties – no judge wants to be the one who put a senator or house representative behind bars. We want to know what you think. Should your public officials be held to a higher standard than an average citizen? Or do you think that since public officials are people just like anyone else, that they should have the same consequences as your average Joe? Let us know!

If you’re an average Joe (or a public official) who has been accused of DUI, you’re going to desire aggressive criminal defense. The experienced Maryland criminal defense lawyers at Bruce Robinson & Associates can help.  If you have any questions about DUI charges or criminal defense in Maryland, give Bruce Robinson & Associates a call at 443.524.7395 or visit our website. We’re here to help when you need it most. Call today for a free consultation, anytime day or night.


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