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Baltimore Criminal Defense Blog

Summertime brings sunshine and DUIs to Maryland

As the temperatures start to rise, most residents are thinking ahead to their summer vacation and all the activities that come with the summer heat. Pool parties, barbecue and holiday celebrations are just some of the highlights we look forward to every summer.

However, one summer activity that no one looks forward to is a DUI. A DUI can not only ruin your summer, but it has long-lasting effects on your driving record, your insurance rates and possibly your career.

What's in your car? Say no to police searches

It's around midnight. You're driving home from the bar. You're just miles away from campus when you see the red lights flashing behind you. Did you swerve? Were you speeding? You rack your brain as you start to move over to the shoulder, putting your hazards on.

Everything is going rather standard for a traffic stop. The officer asks if you've been drinking. Where you are coming from. Where you are going. The rather standard questions. He has the flashlight in your face, but is also clearly peeping inside your car. Now he formally asks, "Can I take a look around?"

What happens if your child is caught selling drugs?

When your children are young, you see them as perfect, innocent human beings. They could do no wrong in your eyes because they are your kids. But as young children become young adults, a parent’s perspective shifts.

You can no longer control your children’s decisions, especially when they move off to college. It’s up to them to take action and live with the consequences. But what happens to your child if they are caught distributing drugs?

Can you get a DUI on a snowmobile?

While many people dread the snow, others cannot wait to get outside and begin their long-awaited winter activities. You may be one of many who are ready to get away from the city and head out on their sleds for some snowmobiling fun.

Amidst all of the fun of going off-road, it is still important to keep safety in mind and avoid getting a DUI charge at all costs.

Police can't force you to unlock your phone

Think about all the private data you have in your phone. There are emails, text messages, photos, data stored in apps -- just to name a few. By just looking at someone's smartphone, you could get a pretty good idea of who someone is and how they like to spend their time.

But is there also incriminating information in our phones? And do police have the right to search our phones to gather evidence?

You have rights: Understanding search and seizure laws

Talking to police is intimidating. They can make you feel like you do not have any options when it comes to answering questions or allowing a search of your property. But this is not true. You have rights. 

Why do some college students turn to drugs?

College is a time of experimentation for young adults, but some college students go too far with what they are willing to experiment with. Some students turn to experimentation with alcohol or drugs for stress release or increased attention.

It doesn't matter if your child were the top student in their high school class, they are vulnerable to drug abuse in their environment. The best way to tackle drug abuse is to know why students start using illegal prescriptions in school.

Can 'helicopter parenting' lead to college drinking?

When kids have a problem with alcohol, whether it's a habit of drinking to excess or a DUI arrest, parents often ask themselves if they're to blame. At the very least, they wonder if they could have done something to prevent it.

Some research has pointed to helicopter parenting as a cause of binge drinking in teens and college-age kids. "Helicopter parents" are known for being excessively protective of their kids, hovering over them and wanting to know what they're doing at all times.

Alcohol is being offered everywhere from yoga classes to funerals

It sometimes seems as though alcohol is available just about everywhere. Many hair salons offer clients a glass of wine. Yoga and painting classes sometimes make alcohol available. Book club meetings and even children's play dates are often an excuse for people to have a glass of wine (or a few). Bowling alleys have long sold beer and other alcoholic beverages. Some gun ranges even serve alcohol on their premises.

Some funeral homes offer alcoholic beverages as well -- to help friends and family toast to a life well lived or simply to help them cope with a loss. Either way, if you drive somewhere you aren't expecting to drink and end up consuming more than a glass or two of alcohol, you can place yourself and others in danger when you get in the car.

Could Probation Before Judgment be the right solution for you?

If you have been arrested for your first crime, you may be worried and scared. You may also be wondering what sort of options you have. Maryland has a program for first-time offenders that may help you. The Probation Before Judgment (PBJ) law allows offenders to complete a probation program without having a conviction on your record. Here are a few things you should know about PBJ: