The Penalties for Domestic Violence in Maryland

The Consequences of a Conviction for Domestic Abuse

The Penalties for Domestic Violence in MarylandProsecutors and legislators in Maryland take a serious approach to domestic violence and abuse. If you are convicted of assault in relation to domestic violence, you can be sentenced to:

  • Up to 1o years in prison on a charge of second-degree assault. Second-degree assault includes any type of offensive touching that reasonably puts the victim in fear of imminent harm.
  • Up to 25 years in prison when charged with first-degree assault. An assault will rise to the level of first-degree assault if a firearm is involved or if the assault causes serious bodily injury or death.

To determine whether a defendant will be charged with first-degree assault, prosecutors will typically look at a number of aggravating factors, including:

  • The nature and extent of injuries
  • Whether or not the injuries are permanent
  • Whether or not there were any broken bones
  • Whether or not the victim required emergency medical treatment or hospitalization

Aggressive Ellicott City Criminal Defense Lawyer

Attorney Jonathan Scott Smith brings more than three decades of experience to criminal defendants across the Baltimore metropolitan area and the state of Maryland, including people charged with domestic violence or abuse. He has been received an AV-rating (the highest rating possible) under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System from his colleagues in the Maryland bar for more than 34 years. He has been ranked among the top 100 lawyers in Maryland listed by SuperLawyers and was named a Top-Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyer Magazine. He has also earned Martindale-Hubbell’s Client Distinction Award, awarded to less than 4% of all lawyers nationwide.

Over the past three decades, attorney Smith has successfully protected the rights of individuals facing all types of criminal charges, including prosecution for domestic violence or abuse. He will work hard to protect your constitutional rights, fully investigating your case to verify that law enforcement officers and prosecutors follow proper procedures when gathering evidence. He’ll question all potential witnesses and preserve all relevant evidence, so that he can prepare and present the most compelling arguments for your acquittal.

Attorney Smith has been listed among the top 100 attorneys in Maryland by the National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization. He holds a 10.0 (Superb) rating as a trial attorney from AVVO, as well as AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars.

Results-Oriented Montgomery County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Contact our office by e-mail or call 410-740-0101 for a free initial consultation. We represent criminal defendants in Carroll County, Frederick County, Howard County, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Assault Crimes in Maryland

What Are the Different Charges You Can Face? What Are the Potential Penalties?

Assault Crimes in MarylandImagine yourself in a situation where someone has done something to cause you to lose your temper. You say something or you engage in a reflex gesture, maybe clenching your fists, and the next thing you know, the police are at your door, seeking to arrest you on charges of assault. It can happen.

In Maryland, assault is generally categorized as first-degree assault or second-degree assault. Assault in Maryland is defined as an “offensive touching,” made without consent or permission, that creates a reasonable fear of imminent harm. Even the slightest contact can be considered assault. Maryland law distinguishes the different levels of assault this way:

  • First-degree assault either involves the use of a firearm or causes serious injury or death
  • Second-degree assault may be charged anytime there is offensive physical contact

Unlike other states, Maryland does not differentiate between assault and battery. Accordingly, an attempt to cause bodily harm or to put a person in reasonable fear of imminent harm may constitute an assault, even if there is no physical contact.

Experienced Baltimore County Criminal Defense Attorney

Attorney Jonathan Scott Smith brings more than 30 years of experience to persons facing criminal prosecution in Maryland, including people charged with any type of assault, including domestic violence. SuperLawyers has listed him as one of the top 100 lawyers in Maryland and The American Lawyer Magazine has also named him a Top-Rated Lawyer.

Attorney Smith has held an AV-rating (the highest possible) under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System for more than three decades. He has also received Martindale-Hubbell’s coveted Client Distinction Award, an accolade earned by less than 4% of all attorneys nationwide. He carries a 10.0 (Superb rating) as a trial lawyer from AVVO and has also earned AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars.

A highly experienced trial lawyer, Jonathan has a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of Maryland criminal law and procedure. He knows how to effectively gather and preserve evidence and will take all necessary measures to ensure that law enforcement officers did not violate your constitutional rights.

Contact a Proven Assault Crimes Defense Lawyer

At the law offices of Jonathan Scott Smith, we aggressively advocate for criminal defendants throughout the greater Baltimore area and across the state of Maryland. Contact us online or call 410-740-0101 to arrange a meeting. We handle cases throughout Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Howard County, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Can You Refuse to Take a Field Sobriety or BAC Test in Maryland?

The Potential Consequences of Choosing Not to Be Tested

Can You Refuse to Take a Field Sobriety or BAC Test in Maryland?In Maryland, as in other states, when you have been pulled over by a police officer, you may be asked to submit to either a field sobriety test (to establish probable cause) or a blood alcohol test, to determine whether you are in violation of the law. Can you refuse to take either one of these tests? If so, are there consequences?

Refusing to Take a Field Sobriety Test

Maryland law does not require that you submit to a field sobriety test. You may have valid reasons for not doing so—health issues, weather or your personal safety, for example. Though you won’t face legal sanctions for refusing to take the field sobriety test, your refusal can be construed as suggesting or even creating probable cause. Accordingly, the officer may choose to make an arrest based on your refusal.

Refusing to Take a Breath Test

As with the field sobriety test, you are not legally required in Maryland to take a preliminary breath test. Even if you agree to take the test, it may not be admissible at trial. However, you can expect that, once you are taken to the police station, you will be asked to take another blood alcohol content test. Because Maryland is an “implied consent” state, when you get behind the wheel, you agree to submit to such a test when requested. If you refuse, your driving privileges will automatically be suspended for 9 months (270 days).

Results-Oriented Baltimore Drunk Driving Lawyer

Attorney Jonathan Scott Smith has more than 30 years of experience successfully protecting the rights of criminal defendants across the Baltimore metro area and the state of Maryland, including people charged with drunk driving. He has been awarded an AV-rating (the highest rating possible) under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System by fellow members of the Maryland bar for more than 34 years. He has been listed among the top 100 lawyers in Maryland listed by Super Lawyers as well as a Top-Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyer Magazine. He has also earned Martindale-Hubbell’s Client Distinction Award, awarded to less than 4% of all attorneys listed in Martindale-Hubbell’s directory.

Over the past three decades, attorney Smith has successfully handled the defense of a wide range of criminal charges, including cases involving prosecution for drinking and driving. He will aggressively protect your constitutional rights and fully investigate your case to determine whether police and prosecutors follow proper procedures when gathering evidence. He’ll carefully interview all potential witnesses, so that he can prepare and present the most compelling arguments in your defense at trial.

Attorney Smith has been listed among the top 100 attorneys in Maryland by the National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization. He holds a 10.0 (Superb) rating as a trial attorney from AVVO, as well as AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars.

Effective Howard County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Contact us online by e-mail or call 410-740-0101. for an appointment. We represent criminal defendants in Carroll County, Frederick County, Howard County, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

The Different Types of Field Sobriety Tests

The Ways a Police Officer Can Establish Probable Cause in a DUI/DWI Case

The Different Types of Field Sobriety TestsIn Maryland, as in other states, when a police officer pulls you over for speeding, running a red light or other traffic infractions, he or she may look for evidence that you are intoxicated or under the influence of drugs. One of the common ways that a law enforcement officer will look to establish probable cause that you have been drinking before you got behind the wheel is with what is known as a “field sobriety test.” There are three field sobriety tests commonly used by police officers in Maryland:

  • The one-leg stand test: You will be asked to stand on one leg and count to a certain number (usually between 15 and 30), while the officer looks for evidence of instability caused by alcohol or drugs. Of course, many people cannot pass this test because of physical conditioning (or lack thereof).
  • The horizontal gaze nystagmus test: The officer will hold an object in front of your face and move it from side to side (typically a light or a pencil). The officer will watch your eyes to see if they jerk back and forth, supposedly an indication of intoxication.
  • The walk and turn test: You’ll be asked to walk “heel-to-toe,” often both forward and backward. You may also be asked to turn left, right or completely around. The officer is looking for a failure to follow directions or some clumsiness in your gait.

Proven Maryland DUI/DWI Defense Lawyer

For more than three decades, attorney Jonathan Scott Smith has protected the constitutional rights of criminal defendants across Baltimore and through out the state of Maryland, including people charged with DUI or DWI. Super Lawyers has named him among the top 100 lawyers in Maryland and The American Lawyer Magazine has also listed him as a Top-Rated Lawyer.

Jonathan has maintained an AV-rating (the highest possible) under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System for more than 34 years. He has also received Martindale-Hubbell’s coveted Client Distinction Award, an honor earned by less than 4% of all attorneys in Maryland. He enjoys a 10.0 (Superb rating) as a trial lawyer from AVVO and has also earned AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars.

A well-respected trial lawyer, Jonathan has a thorough understanding of Maryland criminal law and procedure, and has considerable experience successfully handling a wide range of criminal cases. He knows how to effectively gather and preserve evidence and will take all necessary measures to ensure that law enforcement officers did not violate your constitutional rights.

Aggressive Anne Arundel County Drunk Driving Defense Attorney

At the law offices of Jonathan Scott Smith, we fight for the rights of criminal defendants throughout Baltimore County and the surrounding communities. Contact us online or call 410-740-0101 to arrange a meeting. We handle cases throughout Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Howard County, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Violation of Protective Orders in Maryland

The Potential Consequences of Violating the Terms of a Restraining Order

Violation of Protective Orders in MarylandIn Maryland, protective orders can be put in place for many reasons, often in connection with allegations or findings of domestic violence or abuse. Any violation of the terms of a protective order can be considered contempt of court, and can subject you to an arrest warrant. Typically, when a person has acted contrary to the terms of a protective order, the person being protected has the right to call law enforcement officers, who will typically investigate. If there’s probable cause to believe that the order has been violated, the offender may be arrested, and could face fines and/or jail time.

There may, however, be additional consequences for such actions. If you are a party to a divorce proceeding or are a non-custodial parent, you may face sanctions, such as limitation of visitation.

AV-Rated Baltimore Criminal Defense Lawyer

Attorney Jonathan Scott Smith has more than three decades of experience successfully protecting the rights of DWI/DUI defendants across the Baltimore metro area and the state of Maryland. He has been awarded an AV-rating (the highest rating possible) under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System by fellow members of the Maryland bar for more than 34 years. He has been listed among the top 100 lawyers in Maryland listed by Super Lawyers as well as a Top-Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyer Magazine. He has also earned Martindale-Hubbell’s Client Distinction Award, awarded to less than 4% of all attorneys listed in Martindale-Hubbell’s directory.

Over the past 30+ years, attorney Smith has successfully handled the defense of a wide range of criminal charges, including cases involving prosecution for domestic violence. He will aggressively protect your constitutional rights and fully investigate your case to determine whether police and prosecutors follow proper procedures when gathering evidence. He’ll carefully interview all potential witnesses, so that he can prepare and present the most compelling arguments in your defense at trial.

Attorney Smith has been listed among the top 100 attorneys in Maryland by the National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization. He holds a 10.0 (Superb) rating as a trial attorney from AVVO, as well as AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars.

Effective Howard County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Contact our office by e-mail or call 410-740-0101 for an appointment. We represent criminal defendants in Carroll County, Frederick County, Howard County, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Things You Need to Know about Your Maryland MVA Hearing

Determining the Impact on Your Driving Privileges after a DUI/DWI

Things You Need to Know about Your Maryland MVA HearingWhen you have been arrested and charged with drinking and driving in Maryland, you’ll have go through two separate legal proceedings: the criminal prosecution to determine guilt or innocence and assess penalties; and the MVA (Motor Vehicle Administration) hearing to establish the impact on your right to drive. Here are some important things to know about the DMV proceeding:

  • You can expect the hearing to take place within four to six weeks from the date you request it—you must make the request within 30 days of your detention and arrest
  • You may be able to postpone the hearing, provide you submit a written request at least five days before the scheduled date
  • If you miss the hearing, a suspension or revocation will automatically be put in place
  • You can appeal the decision of the administrative law judge at the hearing, but must do so within 30 days of the hearing
  • After the administrative law judge makes his or her ruling, the MVA will be notified of the decision. If you have not already surrendered your drivers’ license and are ordered to do so, you must immediately bring it to an MVA branch office. Your suspension will not start until you turn in your license.

Experienced Maryland Drunk Driving Defense Attorney

For more than 30 years, attorney Jonathan Scott Smith has fought for the constitutional rights of criminal defendants across Baltimore and through out the state of Maryland, including people charged with drinking and driving. Super Lawyers has named him among the top 100 lawyers in Maryland and The American Lawyer Magazine has also listed him as a Top-Rated Lawyer.

Jonathan has maintained an AV-rating (the highest possible) under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System for more than 34 years. He has also received Martindale-Hubbell’s coveted Client Distinction Award, an honor earned by less than 4% of all attorneys in Maryland .He enjoys a 10.0 (Superb rating) as a trial lawyer from AVVO and has also earned AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars.

A highly respected trial lawyer, Jonathan has a thorough understanding of Maryland criminal law and procedure, and has considerable experience successfully handling a wide range of criminal cases .He knows how to effectively gather and preserve evidence and will take all necessary measures to ensure that law enforcement officers did not violate your constitutional rights.

Proven Baltimore County DUI/DWI Defense Lawyer

At the law offices of Jonathan Scott Smith, we fight for the rights of criminal defendants throughout Baltimore County and the surrounding communities. Contact us online or call 410-740-0101 to arrange a meeting. We handle cases throughout Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Howard County, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Maryland Man Found Guilty in Murder-for-Hire

Defendant Put Out Contract in Drug-Related Matter

Maryland Man Found Guilty in Murder-for-HireA 36-year-old Maryland man has been convicted in federal court of a number of crimes, including murder-for-hire, related to the deaths of three people in rural Pennsylvania in 2016. Kevin Coles, a native of Hagerstown, is alleged to have put out a contract on his girlfriend, Wendy Chaney, after he learned that she was cooperating with federal authorities in a criminal investigation into a drug distribution operation he ran. Authorities say that Coles worked through intermediaries to recruit and hire members of the Baltimore gang known as the “Guerilla Family,” who traveled to a barn in rural Pennsylvania, where they found Chaney, zip-tied her hands behind her back and shot her in the head. Two others, who happened to be at the farm when the killers found Chaney, were also killed.

AV-Rated Maryland Criminal Defense Lawyer

Attorney Jonathan Scott Smith has more than 30 years of experience successfully protecting the rights of DWI/DUI defendants across the Baltimore metro area and the state of Maryland. He has been awarded an AV-rating (the highest rating possible) under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System by fellow members of the Maryland bar for more than 34 years. He has been listed among the top 100 lawyers in Maryland listed by SuperLawyers as well as a Top-Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyer Magazine. He has also earned Martindale-Hubbell’s Client Distinction Award, awarded to less than 4% of all attorneys listed in Martindale-Hubbell’s directory.

Over the past 30+ years, attorney Smith has successfully handled the defense of a wide range of criminal charges, including cases involving prosecution for violent crimes. He will aggressively protect your constitutional rights and fully investigate your case to determine whether police and prosecutors follow proper procedures when gathering evidence. He’ll carefully interview all potential witnesses, so that he can prepare and present the most compelling arguments in your defense at trial.

Attorney Smith has been listed among the top 100 attorneys in Maryland by the National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization. He holds a 10.0 (Superb) rating as a trial attorney from AVVO, as well as AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars.

Effective Maryland Criminal Attorney

Contact our office by e-mail or call 410-740-0101 for an appointment. We represent criminal defendants in Carroll County, Frederick County, Howard County, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

Baltimore Police Cleared in Fatal Shooting

State Attorney’s Office Finds “Probable Cause” of Serious Harm

Baltimore Police Cleared in Fatal ShootingThree Baltimore law enforcement officers, all still current members of the force, will not face prosecution for the death of a 35-year-old man on February 21, 2021. The officers were in pursuit of the victim, Benjamin Tyson, believing him to be a suspect in the shooting of a 23-year-old man earlier that night. When police approached him on the ramp of the Harbor Parking Garage, they say he pulled out a gun. They responded with gunfire, killing him almost instantaneously. Police believe that Tyson could not fire at the police officers because his gun had jammed.

The State’s Attorney’s Office conducted an extensive investigation of the case and concluded that the officers had “probable cause to believe their lives were in imminent threat of serious harm or death.”

Proven Baltimore County Criminal Lawyer

For over three decades, attorney Jonathan Scott Smith has protected the constitutional rights of criminal defendants across Baltimore and throughout the state of Maryland, including people charged with assault or other violent crimes. SuperLawyers has named him among the top 100 lawyers in Maryland and The American Lawyer Magazine has also listed him as a Top-Rated Lawyer.

Jonathan has maintained an AV-rating (the highest possible) under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System for more than 34 years. He has also received Martindale-Hubbell’s coveted Client Distinction Award, an honor earned by less than 4% of all attorneys in Maryland. He enjoys a 10.0 (Superb rating) as a trial lawyer from AVVO and has also earned AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars.

A respected trial attorney, Jonathan has a thorough understanding of Maryland criminal law and procedure, and has considerable experience successfully handling a wide range of criminal cases. He knows how to effectively gather and preserve evidence and will take all necessary measures to ensure that law enforcement officers did not violate your constitutional rights.

Aggressive Maryland Criminal Defense Attorney

At the law offices of Jonathan Scott Smith, we fight for the rights of criminal defendants throughout Baltimore County and the surrounding communities. Contact us online or call 410-740-0101 to arrange a meeting. We handle cases throughout Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Howard County, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

The Potential Penalties for Drunk Driving in Maryland

The Possible Consequences of a Conviction for DUI or DWI

The Potential Penalties for Drunk Driving in MarylandIn Maryland, as in other states, when you have been arrested and charged with operating a vehicle while under the influence (DUI) or while impaired (DWI), you will be subjected to both an administrative proceeding and a criminal prosecution. The administrative proceeding will be conducted by the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA), whereas the criminal prosecution will take place in the state court system.

The purpose of the administrative hearing is to determine the status of your driving privileges. You must request a hearing with the MVA within thirty days of your arrest or your license will automatically be suspended. Furthermore, if you don’t want your license suspended before the administrative hearing, you must ask for the review within 10 days of the traffic stop. In some situations, in lieu of suspension, you may ask the court to allow you to participate in the state’s ignition interlock program. The judge will have the discretion to grant or deny that request.

The objective of the criminal prosecution is to establish guilt or innocence and determine criminal sanctions. The penalties for conviction may include fines of $500 to $5,000, as well as jail/prison terms ranging from two months to five years.

AV-Rated Maryland DUI/DWI Defense Lawyer

Attorney Jonathan Scott Smith has more than three decades of experience successfully protecting the rights of DWI/DUI defendants across the Baltimore metro area and the state of Maryland. He has been awarded an AV-rating (the highest rating possible) under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Rating System by fellow members of the Maryland bar every year since 1988. He has also been listed among the top 100 lawyers in Maryland listed by SuperLawyers as well as a Top-Rated Lawyer by The American Lawyer Magazine. He has holds Martindale- Hubbell’s Client Distinction Award, awarded to less than 4% of all attorneys listed in Martindale-Hubbell’s directory.

Over the past 30+ years, attorney Smith has successfully handled the defense of a wide range of criminal charges, including allegations of DUI and DWI. He will aggressively protect your constitutional rights and fully investigate your case to determine whether police and prosecutors follow proper procedures when gathering evidence. He’ll carefully interview all potential witnesses, so that he can prepare and present the most compelling arguments in your defense at trial.

Attorney Smith has been listed among the top 100 attorneys in Maryland by the National Trial Lawyers Association, a “by invitation only” professional organization. He holds a 10.0 (Superb) rating as a trial attorney from AVVO, as well as AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars.

Results-Oriented Maryland DWI/DUI Defense Attorney

Contact our office by e-mail or call 410-740-0101 for an appointment. We represent criminal defendants in Carroll County, Frederick County, Howard County, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

DWI or DUI? What’s the Difference in Maryland?

What Are the Requirements? What Are the Potential Penalties?

DWI or DUI? What’s the Difference in Maryland?In many states, the terms “DUI” and “DWI” are used interchangeably to refer to virtually any charge involving drinking and driving. In Maryland, however, they refer to two distinction violations of the law.

Drive while impaired, or “DWI,” is the least serious of the drunk-driving offenses in Maryland. A person will generally be charged with driving while impaired if his or her blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is above .07%, but below .08%. In those situations, the decision to charge a person with a DWI is typically based on other signs of impairment, including the failure of a field sobriety test or visible evidence or impaired driving. Conviction on a DWI charge can lead to a 60-day jail term and a $500 fine for a first conviction, with the jail term extended to 12 months for subsequent convictions.

Driving under the influence (DUI), on the other hand, involves a traffic stop where the driver registers a BAC of .08% or higher. A first-time offender may potentially face a fine of $1,000 and a one-year jail sentence, and penalties for subsequent convictions may be as high as $5,000 and five years in prison. A DUI conviction will also typically lead to the accumulation of points on your driving record, which customarily leads, in turn, to increased insurance premiums.

Proven Carroll County Drunk Driving Defense Lawyer

For more than 30 years, attorney Jonathan Scott Smith has tenaciously fought for the rights of criminal defendants across Baltimore and throughout the state of Maryland, including people charged with DWI or DUI. SuperLawyers lists him among the top 100 lawyers in Maryland and The American Lawyer Magazine has also named him a Top-Rated Lawyer.

Jonathan carries an AV-rating (the highest possible) under Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review

Rating System every year since 1988. He has also received Martindale-Hubbell’s coveted Client Distinction Award, given to less than 4% of all attorneys in Maryland. He enjoys a 10.0 (Superb rating) as a trial lawyer from AVVO and has also earned AVVO’s Client’s Choice Award, with an average client review of 5 stars.

A respected trial attorney, Jonathan brings an extensive knowledge of Maryland criminal law and procedure to every case, as well as considerable experience successfully handling a wide range of criminal cases. He knows how to effectively gather and preserve evidence and will take all necessary measures to ensure that law enforcement officers did not violate your constitutional rights.

Proven Baltimore County Criminal Defense Attorney

At the law offices of Jonathan Scott Smith, we fight for the rights of criminal defendants throughout Baltimore County and the surrounding communities. Contact us online or call 410-740-0101 to arrange a meeting. We handle cases throughout Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Frederick County, Howard County, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and Montgomery County in Maryland.

ADDRESS :

  • Jonathan Scott Smith 10490 Little Patuxent Parkway, Suite 200 ,Columbia, MD 21044-4960

  • Call for consultation 410-740-0101