An arrest warrant was issued today for former Deputy Health Secretary John M. Staubitz Jr. after he failed to show up to be sentenced for his role in the State Games scandal.
His lawyers told Baltimore Circuit Judge Andre M. Davis that Mr. Staubitz, who has claimed an attempt was made on his life in connection with the case, was last seen by his family at 11 a.m. yesterday.
"None of us can understand his lack of appearance," defense lawyer Stuart R. Berger told the court, suggesting his client may have fallen victim to circumstances beyond his control. Mr. Staubitz's parents and wife were in court today.
On May 27, an hour before the scheduled start of a five-week trial, Mr. Staubitz, 44, unexpectedly pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit misconduct in office.
He said he decided to forgo a trial after two bullets were fired through his car windows from the woods near his Catonsville home.
Mr. Staubitz said someone tried to kill him to prevent him from testifying on his knowledge of the "underpinnings of state government."
Police said damage to the car was consistent with his account, but no bullets were found.
Prosecutors are seeking a two-year prison term and $30,000 in restitution from Mr. Staubitz, who they say inappropriately billed the state for vacation trips, country club fees and an Ocean City condominium.
Some of the money allegedly came from funds earmarked for the State Games program, an arm of the health department established to promote amateur athletics, ostensibly as a means of discouraging young people from using drugs.