County hires assistant attorneys


Carroll County has hired a local judge's law clerk and a U.S. Department of Defense analyst as assistant county attorneys. They will begin work Thursday.

Beth L. Evans, 33, of Reisterstown has been a law clerk for Circuit Judge Luke K. Burns Jr. since August 1992. She is a 1985 graduate of the Dickinson School of Law in Carlisle, Pa.

Mary Jo Murphy, 38, of Woodbine has been a Department of Defense analyst at Fort Meade for 20 years. She is a 1991 graduate of the University of Baltimore law school.

Ms. Evans and Ms. Murphy will replace Michelle M. Ostrander and Brian M. Bowersox, who left the county attorney's office in October to open a practice in Westminster.

Deputy County Attorney George A. Lahey said 80 lawyers applied for the jobs, which pay $35,900 a year.

Ms. Evans and Ms. Murphy were hired in part because they have ties to Carroll, he said.

"They seem to be capable and personable people. I think they're going to be a valuable addition to the office," Mr. Lahey said.

This will be Ms. Murphy's first job as a lawyer. She attended law school while working part time for the federal government.

She has been volunteering one day a week in the county attorney's office since May to gain experience, she said. She mainly has been helping other attorneys with research.

"I wasn't working in the field, and I wanted to get my hands in," Ms. Murphy said.

In her work with Judge Burns, Ms. Evans said, she helped him prepare mainly for civil cases. She also has done some work on criminal cases.

After graduating from law school, she was an associate in the five-lawyer firm of Hidey, Coyle and Getty in her hometown of Cumberland for three years. She handled real estate and domestic cases.

After leaving Cumberland, she did real estate work for Commonwealth Land Title Insurance Co. in Severna Park and Chicago Title Co. in Annapolis for about one year.

Ms. Evans will handle Department of Social Services cases, which include child abuse and neglect cases, Mr. Lahey said. Her salary is paid by the state.

The county requires that she move to Carroll. She said she may buy a home in the northern part of the county.

Mr. Lahey said he is not sure what county departments Ms. Murphy will advise. She probably will begin by handling tax collections and Sheriff's Department work, he said.

Ms. Murphy has lived in Carroll for 11 years with her husband, Tom, and children Chrissy, 11, and Steve, 16.

The county attorney's office has four other lawyers, including Mr. Lahey.

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