Maryland Criminal Lawyer
A committed legal professional, Colleen Kirby is a former prosecutor and a member of the Maryland State Bar Association, the Howard County Bar Association, and the Maryland Criminal Defense Attorneys Association. She was also recently named one of the top trial lawyers under 40 by the National Trial Lawyers Association, and maintains a perfect 10/10 “Superb” rating from attorney peer rating site AVVO. A dedicated advocate for defendants in local criminal cases, she carefully evaluates each case to consider every possible defense strategy. Whether arguing for dismissal, aggressively fighting for an acquittal at trial, or negotiating a reduced charge, she handles each case with the passion and skill necessary to achieve the best possible outcome for her clients.
Without a criminal defense lawyer to guide you through the justice system, being charged with a crime can be frightening and intimidating. If you have been charged with a crime, the first step in protecting your rights, your freedom, and your future is contacting a criminal defense attorney. Your lawyer will not only build a case for your defense, but will also advise you on appropriate actions and protect you from mistakes that may jeopardize your case.
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Consequences of a conviction create a ripple effect that extends far beyond the legal ramifications. Fines and jail or prison sentences are immediate legal consequences. Though these penalties are considered paid upon completion, certain aspects of the conviction linger. Lengthy probation can affect ones freedoms and privileges and can mandate time-consuming treatment programs and community service. A criminal conviction carries a stigma that can have a devastating impact on one’s relationships with family members and friends. A record can inhibit employment opportunities or student status, and it can make it difficult to secure housing or a financial loan.
Losing immigration status, security clearance, and custody of your children are all possible outcomes of a conviction that can affect you for a lifetime. To help you avoid conviction or minimize the impact of a criminal conviction, consult a qualified lawyer to discuss your defense options.
An experienced lawyer understands the severity of a criminal charge and the lingering effects of a criminal conviction. Criminal defense attorney Colleen Kirby is dedicated to providing quality legal representation to those charged with crimes in Maryland. Handling minor misdemeanors and complex felony cases, Colleen Kirby will treat your case with discretion and will diligently build the strongest defense possible.
These charges include both misdemeanor felony offenses. These are designations determined by the legislature in the statute. Regardless of the crime with which you have been charged, you deserve high quality legal representation and assertive defense from a skilled criminal lawyer.
Whether you have been charged with a misdemeanor or felony, it is important to hire an attorney with experience defending against your specific charge.
Some of the cases handled by Colleen Kirby include:
There are two different types of assault that you can be charged with in the state of Maryland. First-degree assault is the more serious of the two assault charges, and is addressed in § 3-202 of the Maryland state code. If you have committed an assault that includes a firearm, or if it is determined that you caused or intend to cause serious physical injury, you can be charged with first-degree assault. The maximum sentence for first-degree assault in the state of Maryland is 25 years in prison.
Second-degree assault is a less serious charge, and is prosecuted as a misdemeanor in Maryland. Any unwanted physical contact or placing a person in reasonable fear of imminent bodily harm is considered a second degree assault. According to §3-203 of the Maryland state code, second-degree assault carries a maximum sentence of ten years in prison with a conviction. Our assault lawyers know what it takes to win these types of cases, and they can help gather evidence on your behalf for use at trial, if your case gets that far.
A prosecutor trained in handling these specific cases usually handles domestic violence cases in Maryland. They are considered to be cases in which there is a relationship between the parties; it does not have to be a romantic relationship. These charges are taken extremely seriously in Maryland, and having a strong and knowledgeable attorney to defend you is essential. It is important to remember that once a domestic violence charge has been filed, the only person who is able to drop that charge is the prosecutor. Even if the victim filed the charge out of anger and has since rethought their stance on the matter, they will be unable to have the charges dropped once they are entered into the state judicial system. As a result, it is important to have sound representation that will help protect your rights throughout the trial.
Drug laws in the state of Maryland might be difficult to fully understand because specific charges and their penalties vary greatly depending on a few factors. The type of drug you have, the amount you have in your possession, your intent with those drugs and your prior criminal history are just a few of the many factors that will determine which charge the state will bring against a defendant. Among the most serious drug charges levied by the state of Maryland are those found in § 5-601 through §5-628, regarding controlled dangerous substances and paraphernalia.
Factors that can affect your specific charge include whether or not you were in the possession of paraphernalia (the tools and ingredients necessary to manufacture narcotics), transporting them across state lines or distributing them to minors. If you have been charged with a violation of Maryland state drug law or even if you are the subject of an investigation that you feel might result in a charge, please contact our lawyers to schedule a free consultation. Our attorneys will examine the facts of your case and help you determine what charge you might eventually face, and begin establishing a defense strategy on your behalf.
Speeding violations are common in the state of Maryland. While those are a major inconvenience, the legal penalties associated with them are relatively minor. While they can be handled by paying a fine, doing so may have negative implications with the MVA and with your insurance company. When you pay a traffic ticket, you are entering a guilty plea and points may be assessed on your license. If you hire an attorney, she can appear on your behalf and attempt to obtain a result that will prevent points from being accrued – therefore protecting your ability to drive.
Driving on a suspended license is covered in § 16-303 of the Maryland official code. It dictates that a person is not allowed to operate a motor vehicle on any while their street or highway privilege to drive has been suspended. If you are found to be driving on a suspended license, you could be facing jail time, hefty fines and increased periods of suspension.
To operate a motor vehicle in Maryland, you must also have your vehicle registered with the state and proof of insurance on that vehicle. If you are convicted of driving an unregistered vehicle in Maryland you could face a fine of up to $500. If you are found to be driving without insurance, you could be facing up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000, among other legal penalties.
While sex crimes are often physical in nature, many do not involve any actual contact between the victim and the perpetrator. Actions committed without the victim’s consent, such as indecent exposure, may still qualify as sex offenses even if there is no touching involved.
Being convicted of any sex offense in Maryland carries long-lasting, usually lifelong consequences. Not only will the guilty person be subjected to fines and possible jail or prison sentences, he or she will have a permanent criminal record and have his or her name inputted to the state sex offender registry. This can make it extremely difficult, if not impossible, to get a job, find housing or return to a normal personal life.
The severity of these consequences means that you cannot take a chance on anything other than top-quality legal representation. Even if you suspect you may be under investigation for a sex crime in Maryland but have not yet been formally charged, the advice of an attorney is critical to preserving your rights and giving you the maximum chance of reaching a favorable result in any future case. Regardless of the nature of the accusations against you, Colleen Kirby will explore every legal avenue to protect your freedom, your livelihood and your reputation.
Probation violations are taken very seriously, and almost always result in incarceration without a skilled criminal defense attorney representing you. If you have already committed a crime and been placed on probation, breaking any conditions imposed on you by the judge will result in heavy legal penalties and fines. Colleen Kirby has experience representing defendants accused of violating the terms of their probation, and handles each case with a focus on providing quality results.
The penalties for a DUI arrest are difficult to understand because they can vary greatly based on a few factors. If you have been convicted of driving under the influence or another drinking related traffic violation, each subsequent violation carries an enhanced penalty. You could also be given an increased sentence if you are found to have an excessive BAC at the time of your arrest.
A first conviction of driving under the influence will carry a maximum sentence of one year, and/or a fine up to $1,000. If you are subsequently arrested for a second DUI, both potential punishments will double. You could receive a two-year prison sentence and a fine of up to $2,000. The penalties for a third time conviction are three years in prison and/or a fine of $3,000.
Driving while impaired is not quite as serious of a charge as its more famous relative, but a conviction of this crime also has the potential to do serious damage to your life moving forward. The maximum penalty for a first-time DWI in the state of Maryland is two months in jail and/or up to $500 in fines.
Conviction for either a DUI or DWI will have serious consequences and impact your legal right to drive. Penalties are imposed not just by the court system, but also by the MVA, and these penalties, including possible license suspension or revocation, can be even more detrimental to your daily life than those issued by the criminal court. There is only a 10 day window from the time of your arrest to request a hearing to mitigate or eliminate these penalties. Therefore, it is important to contact a Maryland Criminal Defense Attorney immediately to protect your right to drive.
Despite how commonly they are charged, driving under the influence and driving while impaired are very serious offenses that have the potential to negatively affect your life in a number of ways. If you have been arrested for driving under the influence, or formally charged with a criminal violation, it is important to hire an attorney who has experience in this type of case.
Under the Maryland judicial system, minors of a particular age cannot be punished for certain violations, and are punished less harshly for some other offenses than adults would be. Depending on the severity of the offense and the age of the offender, the case will be held either in criminal court or juvenile court. If the minor is found guilty of the offense in question in juvenile court, his or her parents or guardians may be held liable for damages caused by the minor as well as additional fees. The advice and counsel of a high-caliber Maryland lawyer can help ensure that the case is steered to the most favorable venue possible for the minor and his or her family, giving the defendant the best chance of receiving a good outcome.
How We Can Help Our Clients
Consequences of a DUI or DWI conviction create a ripple effect that extends far beyond the legal ramifications. Fines and jail or prison sentences are the most apparent consequences, but even when these penalties are paid or served, many other consequences of the conviction linger. Lengthy probation can affect one’s freedoms and privileges and can mandate time-consuming treatment programs and community service. A criminal conviction carries a stigma that can have a devastating impact on one’s relationships with family members and friends. A criminal record can inhibit employment opportunities or student status, and can make it difficult to secure housing or a financial loan.
Losing immigration status, security clearance, and custody of your children are all possible outcomes of a conviction that can impact you for a lifetime. To help you avoid conviction or minimize the impact of a criminal conviction, consult a qualified lawyer to discuss your defense options.
An experienced lawyer understands the severity of a criminal charge and the lingering effects of a guilty verdict. Criminal defense attorney Colleen Kirby is dedicated to providing quality legal representation to those charged with crimes in Maryland. Handling minor misdemeanors as well as complex felony cases, Colleen Kirby will treat your case with care and discretion and will diligently build the strongest defense possible.
Colleen Kirby’s office in Ellicott City, Maryland is located conveniently near the Howard County District and Circuit Courts. As a Maryland criminal lawyer, Ms. Kirby defends not only clients charged in Howard County, but those charged in counties throughout central Maryland.
Howard County has a crime rate about 31% lower than the average for the state of Maryland. The violent crime rate has an even larger disparity, as Howard County is about 63 % lower than the state average. Ms. Kirby’s office is located in Ellicott City, near the two courtrooms where your case might be heard. The District Court typically handles misdemeanor cases, and can be found at 3451 Court House Drive. Just a short drive away is the Circuit Court, which typically handles felony cases and jury trials. The Circuit Court is located at 8360 Court Avenue.
Baltimore has a bad reputation for crime, but it has been getting safer in the past few years. The crime rate in 2011 represented a nine percent decrease over the previous five-year average. However, crime is still not uncommon in Baltimore, and thousands of people each year are charged with criminal violations. The City of Baltimore has three district court locations; the Borgerding District Court Building located at 5800 Wabash Avenue, the civil division at 501 East Lafayette Street, and the Eastside District Court Building at 1400 E. North Avenue.
Anne Arundel County
Violent crime fell drastically in Anne Arundel County in 2011, when police reported only 2,486 cases. That figure was nearly 8 percent less than it was in 2010. Most of these violent crimes were assault, according to the FBI Uniform Crime Reporting Database. Anne Arundel contains Annapolis, the Maryland state capital and the home of the Naval Academy. Our attorneys have experience representing clients at the Annapolis District Court located at 251 Rowe Boulevard, as well as the Glen Burnie District Court located at the George M. Taylor Multi-Service Center at 7500 Gov. Ritchie Highway.
In order to begin dealing with the charges against you, retain the services of a skilled lawyer as soon as possible after you have been arrested, or as soon as you suspect you are being investigated. Your lawyer will ensure that your Constitutional rights are protected throughout the process, and her early involvement will help you avoid costly mistakes when speaking to police and investigators. To take the first step in building a top-quality defense, contact Colleen Kirby at (410) 441-5005 for a free consultation of your case.
Please call for a FREE consultation (410) 441-5005