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Emmitsburg Man Sentenced to 10 years in Prison for Rape
FREDERICK- This morning, the Honorable Judge Scott Rolle sentenced John Warren Compton, 37, of Emmitsburg, MD to 30 years in prison, suspending all but 10 years. The sentence comes after the defendant entered an Alford plea, acknowledging that the State had sufficient evidence to convict him. The plea agreement is for two counts of 3rd degree sex offense, and one count of sexual solicitation of a minor. Judge Rolle imposed additional conditions upon Compton’s release from prison. He must register as a Tier 2 sex offender for 25 years, 5 years supervised probation, have no contact with the victim or minor females under age 16, as well as undergo psychosexual evaluation, testing, and monitoring.
State’s Attorney Charlie Smith reacted to the plea stating, “It’s guys like this that we would like to put in jail forever. However, we have to balance the interest and well-being of the victim and her parents. Having to testify at trial and endure a possible appeal can often be very difficult. Notwithstanding that, we must seek a substantial prison sentence for these offenders.”
According to charging documents, Compton met the victim on Snapchat in July 2018. The defendant told the 12-year-old female victim that he was only two years older than she was. In August 2018, an arrangement was made for Compton to pick up the victim from her grandparents address in Gettysburg. The victim believed based on his stated age that he would be driven there by his parents. He subsequently took the victim back to his home in Emmitsburg and had sexual intercourse with the victim.
The State was represented by Assistant State’s Attorney Tammy Leache. The Frederick County Sheriff’s Office investigated the case with assistance from the Pennsylvania State Police. ... See MoreSee Less
Yesterday, Juvenile Division Chief Laura Wilt attended a working group meeting of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) in Washington, DC. The mission is to help jurisdictions around the country in forming definitions, practices, and principles relating to restorative justice. The concept of restorative justice is based on rehabilitating offenders through reconciliation with the victim and the community at large. Caren Harp, Administrator of OJJDP, states “restorative justice, when properly defined and practiced, can guide effective interventions with youth, repair harm to victims, and keep communities safe.”
The Frederick County State’s Attorney’s Office is grateful to our staff for their hard work and involvement in shaping professional practices in Frederick and beyond. State's Attorney J Charles Smith commented, "This is just another example of how Frederick County is at the forefront of national criminal justice issues. I am really proud of my staff, and the people of Frederick should be so as well."
Smith added, "I am also glad to see a focus on restorative justice. This is a concept that recognizes that crime causes harm and justice should focus on repairing that harm. It has an emphasis on victims, and that the people most affected by the crime should be able to participate in its resolution. Unfortunately, far too much emphasis is placed on the defendant’s well-being, to the detriment of making the victim whole." ... See MoreSee Less
1 week ago
Frederick County Creates New Mental Health Court
FREDERICK- On July 8th, 2019, the Maryland Court of Appeals approved the creation of the Frederick County District Mental Health Court. The new Problem Solving Court will serve defendants affected by mental health issues. It will be one of only a handful of Mental Health Courts in the State of Maryland. Currently, Frederick County also has a Drug Treatment Court. Creating innovative solutions to work with offenders has been a top priority for Frederick County State’s Attorney J Charles Smith.
Smith commented, “This has been a passion of mine for many years. Unfortunately, previous attempts were unsuccessful. We now have all of the pieces in place to launch what I consider a legacy program in Frederick County.” One of the greatest challenges facing the criminal justice system has always been recidivism rates. Smith added, “The revolving door involving these offenders was quite frankly frustrating. We would prosecute them, incarcerate them, and they would be back out on the streets doing the same offenses. I consider this crime fighting and an improvement to our public safety.”
Following the closure of many state mental hospitals in the 1980s, jurisdictions around the country struggled with mentally ill offenders. Starting in the 1990s, the criminal justice system found few alternatives to incarceration. With only a small number of mental health facilities in operation, the hope was offenders would get some form of therapy or medication while behind bars. In reality, the system was unable to provide that level of treatment. Problem Solving Courts are designed to provide treatment and accountability, so offenders can be rehabilitated while in our community.
The Frederick County State’s Attorney’s Office has observed high recidivism with defendants with mental illness repeatedly arrested for low-level offenses such as shoplifting, trespassing, vandalism or disorderly conduct. Our case management system calculated 845 individual cases between 36 defendants over the last three years, averaging of 23 cases per individual.
State’s Attorney Smith believes these Problem Solving Courts not only aid offenders in getting their life back on track, but it helps the taxpayers as well. The goal is simple, treat mental health and substance abuse issues so that offenders have the necessary resources to return to our community as productive law-abiding citizens.
Joyce King, Smith’s Chief Counsel, was instrumental in getting the proposal submitted to the Judicial Council Committee on Specialty Courts. Following the approval, the State of Maryland awarded $100,000 for the first fiscal year of operations to fund a full-time Mental Health Court Coordinator and Clinician, as well as a part-time panel Public Defender. All of this could not have been possible without the assistance and cooperation of the Hon. Judge Dino Flores, Hon. Judge Earl Bartgis, Mary Riley of the Maryland Public Defenders Office, Hilari Young of Parole and Probation, Andrea Walker of the Local Behavioral Health Authority, and all partners of the Mental Health Public Safety Collaborative Committee.
The Frederick County Mental Health Court hopes to be operational by Fall 2019 after the positions are filled by Behavioral Health Services Division/Local Behavioral Health Authority of the Frederick County Health Department. ... See MoreSee Less