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Maryland Church Leader’s DUI Drama Unfolds

By now, most Marylanders have heard of the distressing DUI case involving a leading figure in the state’s Episcopal Diocese. Heather Elizabeth Cook, who had only recently been promoted to the position of bishop within the church, was arrested and charged with drunk driving and manslaughter after her car struck and killed a bicyclist back in December. The aftermath of her case has been a textbook example of how devastating a DUI charge can be for any individual’s career.

Heather CookDUI Charge Has Led to Long-term Consequences for Cook

As the facts and anecdotal evidence seem to indicate, Heather Cook has been struggling for years with an alcohol-related problem.  Sadly, this most recent case is not her first DUI charge; she was charged in 2010, before her appointment as bishop, with driving under the influence as well. But despite that initial charge, Cook was still able to be promoted within the ranks of the church and, seemingly, to get her life back on track. The tragic events in December proved, unfortunately, that she had not been successful in that endeavor probably because she failed to identify and accept that she had a problem with alcohol and to work through that problem.  The first toward successfully living with this decease is to acknowledge the problem.

Bishop’s Downfall in the Baltimore Community

Cook is now facing the diocese’s request for her resignation, serious charges of DUI and manslaughter, and the unfortunate decimation of her reputation in the community. If her case represents anything, it represents this: no one is exempt from making the kinds of mistakes that can lead to this kind of situation, not even a high-ranking church official.

Getting the Help She Needs

It is clear from reports that what Cook would benefit from most is help accepting and dealing with her alcohol problem and counseling. Individuals who find themselves charged with a DUI often are people who suffer from the disease of alcoholism and who need rehabilitation more than anything else to get them back on the right track. Hopefully, those who make the ultimate decision in Heather Cook’s case will take note of that fact; but when the disease is complicated by extreme acts like in this case, proper punishment can be difficult to determine.

Finding a DUI Lawyer in Maryland

If you have been charged with a DUI, then you are far from the only one who has faced such a harrowing and upsetting situation. Whether you have made a one-time error in judgment or you are suffering from alcoholism and need help, the strict, unyielding punishments of the justice system may not be what’s appropriate in your case. To find the help that you need and regain control over your life, you need to seek out a qualified DUI attorney in your area. Call on The Law Offices of Bruce Robinson & Associates today.

Bruce Robinson & Associates

Bruce Robinson & Associates is a criminal defense law firm based in Baltimore, MD. If you have been accused of criminal actions and need to seek aggressive counsel, Robinson & Associates is here to help. Robinson & Associates a call at 443-524-7395 or visit us at You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.


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