I have spent over 15 years regularly working in our courts, having handled thousands of criminal cases as both a prosecutor and private attorney. I served as a Senior State's Attorney for Carroll County, and an Assistant Attorney General for Maryland. While in private practice, I have represented people charged with criminal offenses allowing me to directly see the crime and drug issues facing Carroll County. I serve as a legal instructor for law enforcement, including the FBI, ATF, Maryland State Police, National Fire Academy, and numerous others around the State and country. I have trained thousands of police in proper investigative procedures, and have even been asked to teach our state judges and prosecutors. I recently was awarded a Maryland State Police Superintendent Salute for my "countless contributions" to law enforcement throughout the course of my career.
I am seeking the position of State's Attorney because after 20 years of incumbency we have complacency in the criminal prosecution of cases and it is time for fresh leadership. The job of the State's Attorney is a 24/7 commitment that requires regular leadership in the courtroom and strong partnerships with our police in order to continually combat the ever-changing face of crime.
In 2012, the official state statistics showed Carroll County serious crime increased by 11%, while all surrounding counties saw a decrease. Even more alarming were state statistics showed drug overdose deaths had increased in 2012 by a staggering 253%. Carroll County also ranks 8th in the State in alcohol and drug related crashes, and there have been more murder charges in this county since 2010 then the previous 7 years combined. There are real families behind these statistics.
The Carroll County Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 20, has overwhelmingly endorsed me for State's Attorney. They have publicly stated their belief we are at an "important crossroads," and the direction being taken to address the "significant spike in serious crime and drug overdoses" is not a proper one. I have the experience, knowledge, passion, and plans needed to change the path we are on.
Pro-actively Target Our Worst Repeat Offenders
I will put an end to the excessive plea bargaining currently taking place that too often has created a revolving door in the courtroom. I will take a very pro-active approach to our worst offenders by creating a Repeat Offender Prosecution Team made up of senior prosecutors that will work directly with our police to both identify, investigate, and convict the individuals most responsible for repeatedly victimizing the citizens of this County. I will create special prosecution zones in order to bring a "zero tolerance" approach to those committing crimes that are seriously impacting the quality of life in certain business areas and neighborhoods. Crime does not have borders, and without implementing a strong pro-active approach we will see more criminals flocking to Carroll.
Aggressive Approach to the Rising Drug Abuse Issue
I will attack the alarming drug trends in several ways. I will not only target those dealing drugs and engaging in prescription fraud, but actively seek to prevent our children from using those drugs by personally providing education to both children and parents along with the health department and our school officials. I have plans to aggressively intervene on those using drugs when we first have the opportunity in the court system, and require sustained treatment and monitoring of those abusing drugs in order to prevent their continued drug use that routinely leads to more theft, burglary, and robbery victims.
Restore Law Enforcement Relationships & Trust
I bring a strong working relationship that will restore trust between the State's Attorney's Office and our police, as well as surrounding prosecutor's offices. We have seen a public breakdown in these relationships, and the Carroll County FOP in endorsing me stated our police know these partnerships are currently lacking and that I have a "solid reputation for creating strong and effective partnerships." This trust and strong partnership is critical in order to effectively and efficiently combat the issues we face now and into the future. I humbly ask for your vote as I stand ready to commit myself 24/7 to keeping all of our families safe now and in the future.
Editor's note: All introductory columns appear exactly as they were received from the candidate.