Dear Clients & Friends,

Great Preakness Stakes last weekend – we were all amazed by the stretch run by ‘I’ll Have Another’, but there has been more chat about Pit Bulls in Maryland than three year-old thoroughbreds.  Yes, it is true, Maryland’s highest court ruled that this breed of dog is a deadly weapon and any physical damage it does on a human, the owner is strictly liable for damages.  Before the ruling, if you were negligent and your dog got away and attacked someone, you were likely protected by your homeowner’s insurance.  No more.  Pit Bull (and mixed breeds with Pit Bull stock) dog owners and Landlord’s who have renters with Pit Bull breeds are individually liable for damages – it is coming straight out of your pocket.  Why? Is this an anti-dog activist Court or is the insurance industry tired of paying out so much money in our dog obsessed country?  For now, it is the law.  I have some cold hard advice for landlords and dog owners.  Call me if you have any questions.

Insurer pays $109M for dog bite claims

Summer time, summer time: Do not make it DWI time.  The legal limit is 0.8 – that is just around three drinks.  Penalties include jail time, fines, interlock devices, license suspension, court and legal costs.  I have successfully defended individuals charged with drinking and driving for twenty-two years.  If you or a loved one get into trouble, call me right away for representation.

Remember – Maryland law prohibits the use of cell phones and texting while driving.  Do not get pulled over for these offenses and be subject to further police interaction.  Make your calls before you start driving then put your phone away.  If you are driving and the phone rings, try not to answer until you can pull safely over.

I want to thank Tim Tooten and WBAL TV for supporting our “End Distracted Driving Campaign”. Tim did a nice story earlier this week and filmed my power point presentation before 180 students at a local school.  The students like the scared straight approach, my personal legal war stories and the free wrist bands.  Give me a call if you have a group you want me to talk to. The video link is below.

John Angelos speaks to teens at schools about distracted driving

Finally, it is also the motorcycle and biking time of year.  Keep a vigilant eye out for the two wheelers; they have the same legal rights on the roads as the four wheelers.

Be well.   John CM