The Law Office of Matthew E. Bennett
A Maryland Law Firm Based in Silver Spring And Serving Surrounding Communities

Silver Spring Maryland Criminal Defense Legal Blog

A DUI can destroy your commercial driving career

Do you drive a commercial vehicle for a living? Are you facing accusations of driving your commercial or personal vehicle while under the influence of alcohol? If so, a lot is riding on how you choose to approach your DUI charge in a Maryland criminal court.

Driving under the influence is a significant violation for any driver. For those who operate commercial vehicles, the consequences can be far greater than they are for the average driver. Why? The damages caused when a commercial vehicle is involved in an accident are usually significant.

College students, peer pressure and underage drinking

For many Maryland teens, college is the first real taste of freedom and adulthood they get. As they struggle to find their footing, they may end up at a party or with new friends who drink alcohol. Even though you probably talked to them about these types of scenarios, it is now up to them to make the right choice.

The problem is that peer pressure doesn't disappear when you graduate from high school. In some cases, it only gets worse. Intoxicated college students could put unbearable pressure on your teen to join in on the "fun." Unless your child understands how to deal with this type of barrage, you could receive a phone call from a police station.

Facing the aftermath of a trucking accident

A motor vehicle accident is a frightening experience. Even if the events seem to happen in slow motion, your body and mind may undergo a kind of paralysis that prevents you from reacting physically. However, if your accident involved a large vehicle, such as an 18-wheeler or construction truck, the terror may be something you will never overcome.

Even if you are driving a pickup truck or SUV, your vehicle may be no match for a tractor-trailer. Commercial vehicle accidents have many factors that set them apart from crashes between two similarly sized vehicles. Understanding the differences may lead to a more successful pursuit of damages.

Preparing for DUI checkpoints

Chances are at some point over the holidays, Maryland law enforcement will establish a sobriety checkpoint. These controversial methods of deterring drunk drivers are legal in most states thanks to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling, which declared that the benefits of a checkpoint outweigh any risk of violating a driver's Fourth Amendment rights.

Nevertheless, the legality of a DUI roadblock does not grant carte blanche to law enforcement, and the federal government established strict guidelines for officers to follow to avoid violating your rights.

Will contributory negligence laws affect your car accident case?

After a car accident, you may need immediate medical attention because of the injuries you suffered. Doctors and other medical staff may ask you numerous questions that you need to answer truthfully in order to help them diagnose and treat your injuries. Of course, these individuals are not the only ones who will need answers.

You may ask yourself many questions, and police officers may also need answers to determine exactly how the accident happened. In particular, you and they may want to know who to consider at fault for the incident. If another person is considered at fault for the injury-causing accident, you may have reason to seek compensation for damages.

Don't waive your rights after your Miranda Warning

It doesn't matter whether you face charges for a non-violent misdemeanor or a violent felony; you receive the same rights under the United States Constitution. The Miranda Warning makes sure that you know you have the right to remain silent and the right to obtain counsel.

Before police can question you, a law enforcement official must read you these rights. If officers fail to do this prior to questioning, then a court may prevent the prosecutor from using against you in court anything that transpires. The same may also be true if police continue to question you after you invoke your rights.

Is it possible to survive a head-on collision?

It may seem obvious to you to hear that increasing your speed on the highway increases your chances of serious or even fatal injury in an accident. After all, you probably notice that speeds decrease in school zones, heavily populated areas and roads with many cross streets, and this is a matter of safety. Therefore, it may not surprise you to know that the faster the speeds of the vehicles involved in a head-on collision, the more the chances of survival decrease for the drivers and passengers.

A head-on collision often results in catastrophic, life-altering or fatal injuries. Still, worldwide research is finding that slower speeds in areas where you may encounter opposing traffic is one way to reduce the chances of these tragedies.

Did the officer mistake hypoglycemia for intoxication?

Somewhere in the neighborhood of 23.6 million people across the country suffer from diabetes. A few million of them don't even know they do. This puts them at risk for several adverse health events, but it also puts them at risk for being accused of intoxication by a police officer.

One of the reasons why courts tend not to allow the results of roadside preliminary breath tests into evidence in DUI cases is because they are notoriously unreliable. For instance, if your blood sugar drops to dangerous levels because you have diabetes or suffer from hypoglycemia, you could appear drunk and your breath test results could indicate you are drunk.

Deadly pedestrian accidents are on the rise

Whether you walk for pleasure or out of necessity, walking is a great alternative to conventional transportation methods. As a pedestrian, you likely get more exercise than the average person in Maryland does, and you have a greater opportunity to simply enjoy the act of being outside. However, this healthy habit could also be putting you in harm's way. 

Pedestrian deaths are on an upward trend. Despite some attempts to make roadways safer for people on foot, it does not look as though the number of fatalities will go down any time soon. 

Feeling whipped after that rear-end collision?

What started out like any other day, ended with you in a lot of pain. While in your car waiting in traffic, the driver behind you failed to pay attention and slammed into the back of your vehicle. At first, you felt okay so you refused medical treatment. It's only been a few hours, but now your body is singing a different tune. You have whiplash, which is a common injury following a rear-end collision.

Rear-end collisions happen all too frequently on Maryland roads. While the injuries associated with such accidents can vary, whiplash is the most commonly seen. It may not sound like anything too horrible, but it can be -- especially if not treated properly.


The Law Office of Matthew E. Bennett
8720 Georgia Avenue
Suite 701
Silver Spring, MD 20910

Phone: 301-960-5347
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Attorney Matthew E. Bennett