Top prosecutor for 25 years
During my 25-year career at the Anne Arundel County State’s Attorney’s Office, I prosecuted hundreds of violent felons, including domestic violence crimes, crimes against seniors, and vicious homicides. I have a reputation for meticulous preparation and focus on seeking justice on behalf of the victims of crimes and their families. I have had the opportunity to handle a number of high profile cases over the years as one of Anne Arundel County’s top attorneys.
Among them is the double murder case of two attorneys who were tied up and executed in their bed at their weekend home outside of Annapolis in 1994. The case of the State of Md. vs. Scotland Williams was one of the biggest cases Anne Arundel County had seen and featured DNA evidence at its infancy. Williams was convicted and is serving life without parole.
The 2010 carjacking outside the Westfield Annapolis Mall by Arthur Felton, who had previously served 14 years in prison for the second-degree murder of a 6-year-old girl in Baltimore, was a sensational case. Felton shoplifted at the mall and then led security through the streets of Annapolis and attempted to commandeer a woman’s car to get away. I convicted him of carjacking and he received a 12-year sentence as repeat offender.
In 2005, I secured the conviction of Ann Hoard, a nurse, for the attempted first-degree murder of her ex-husband. Ms. Hoard attacked her ex-husband with a syringe filled with succinylcholine chloride, a surgical muscle relaxant that paralyzes the diaphragm and stops breathing. Hoard wanted to regain custody of their young son and have her ex’s death look like he suffered a heart attack. Hoard was sentenced to 15 years in prison.
In 2010, I prosecuted Ricco Gough for the shooting death of a man outside Dietrich’s Tavern in Glen Burnie. What should have been a fist fight over a minor disagreement erupted into gunfire outside the crowded bar. Instead of a few shoves and punches, Gough waited for the victim to leave the tavern to ambush him. Gough fled in his rental car which he quickly returned the next day to get rid of any evidence. Fortunately, Gun Shot Residue (GSR) evidence was found on the steering wheel and interior door of the car which helped link him to the crime. Gough was sentenced to 50 years in prison.
In 2012, I prosecuted Craig Brooks, who posed as a Pepco worker during a home invasion in Glen Burnie and tricked the victim into letting him in to read her electric meter. Once he gained entrance, Brooks tied up the female homeowner with duct tape, took a picture of her with his cell phone, threatened her and then ransacked her home. Months later, the victim recognized Brooks on the evening news after he was arrested for a similar home invasion in Prince George’s County where the victim had been shot and killed. Brooks, a man in his 50’s, was sentenced to 25 years in prison without parole for the crime.
I have also vigorously prosecuted domestic violence perpetrators. In 1999, I sought and secured a life sentence for Enoch Brown, who attempted to kill his girlfriend in front of horrified neighbors on the front lawn of her uncle’s Odenton home. Brown slit the woman’s throat, then slit his own throat as police officers descended on the scene. The surviving victim calls me every few years when Brown is considered for parole—and each time we fight against his release together. In 2010, I prosecuted Steven Brown for shooting his ex-girlfriend through her car window as she left their child’s birthday party. She survived only because she instinctively raised her hand to block the shot that came toward her head. Brown’s family pressured the woman to “drop the charges” and made excuses for Brown’s crimes. Fortunately, with a lot of help and support, she was able to stand up to her abuser and his family and the defendant was sentenced to life in prison.
In 2013, I convicted Stephen Salb of first-degree murder for killing his wife while her teenage daughter tried to pull him away and protect her mother from his knife attack. Salb, a man with no prior criminal contact, was sentenced to life in prison. At his sentencing I told the court that this case was the "the ultimate example of domestic violence” because Mrs. Salb was killed only because she chose to leave the marriage and for that, Salb wanted to punish her for divorcing him.
In 2014, while serving as Anne Arundel State’s Attorney, I prosecuted and won convictions after jury trials for two murderers. The first, Michael Stahlnecker executed his partner behind his business and hid the body in the trunk of the victim’s car. I used cell phone tower evidence to place the suspect at the scene of the crime as well as in the area where the body was left. Just four months later, I prosecuted Victor Harper, a man who shot the ex-husband of his estranged girlfriend in the living room of her home. The jury didn’t buy his claim of self-defense, finding he shot the unarmed man out of anger.
From 2015-2018, as the Chief of the Special Victims Unit in Baltimore, I supervised 22 attorneys as well as prosecuted a dozen cases of sexual assault, domestic violence. child abuse and child homicide cases—convicting more than a dozen people of child homicide alone. These cases are some of the most horrific that I have ever handled in my career and were committed against the most vulnerable of victims. In 2016 I convicted Michael Griffin in the child abuse and rape of a teenager and he received a 125 year sentence. In 2017 I convicted William Watson of Child Abuse Resulting in Death for the scalding death of his newborn daughter. In 2018 I convicted Matthew and Anne Kirsch of Child Abuse Resulting in Death for the killing of their newborn son.