Criminal Law: Criminal Law

Criminal Law in Maryland FAQ

The definition of criminal law is fairly straightforward. Criminal law is a system of laws concerning the punishment of those that commit anything deemed illegal. This includes a wide range of statutes, including but not limited to:

Assault charges may include:

  • Arson
  • Assault
  • Acts of sexual violence
  • Weapon and firearm violations
  • Forgery
  • Child abuse
  • Kidnapping
  • Drug manufacture and possession
  • Theft
  • Murder
  • Accidental manslaughter
  • Violations of local city codes

Since criminal law covers so many issues, it can be difficult to understand the details and proper procedures of your specific case. Below is a list of frequently asked questions about criminal law. For answers more specific to your individual case, make an appointment with C. Gregory Coburn and see how we can best help you.

How are criminal laws established in Maryland?

Criminal laws are written and passed by the General Assembly, the legislative body of the state. This includes all of the definitions used in the text of the laws, such as the many degrees of murder and sexual assault, the definition of consent, the definition of cyber-crime, and many more. These definitions, along with the punishments associated with specific crimes, enable attorneys to defend the rights of the accused.

How is criminal law different in Maryland compared to other U.S. states?

Assisted by the guidelines of the United States federal law, every state features different penalties and definitions to prevent crime. While definitions may only differ slightly according to the unique needs of each state, penalties can vary greatly.
For instance, Maryland has extremely stiff penalties for drug crimes. Alternatively, in contrast to states like Florida and Texas, Maryland abolished the death penalty and capital punishment in 2013. Accordingly, laws were changed to match legislated penalties to crimes once defined in criminal law as capital punishment.

As an example, how are DUIs (Driving Under the Influence) handled in criminal law?

As in all U.S. states, driving a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol is illegal and is considered criminal according to the laws of Maryland. Additionally, Maryland is not a “zero tolerance” state, meaning that anyone driving with any level of blood-alcohol concentration (or BAC .07 or greater) more than likely will receive a DUI charge. The consequences of DUIs are severe, up to and including fines and jail time.

The penalties of DUI felonies are defined by the Maryland Transportation Code. This is also defined and passed by state legislation.

Have More Questions About Criminal Law?

As laws continue to change, you need a knowledgeable defender who stays up to date and ready to defend the rights of their clients. If you have been charged with a crime in Maryland, contact the Law Office of C. Gregory Coburn to receive counsel and legal representation in your specific case. For nearly 30 years, C. Gregory Coburn has helped hundreds of clients protect the rights afforded them according to criminal law. Get the criminal law representation you need today from our experienced Maryland lawyer.