After 2 court reversals, driver pleads guilty to homicide

April 21, 1993|By Sheridan Lyons | Sheridan Lyons,Staff Writer

John Charles Glaser, 39, pleaded guilty yesterday in Baltimore County Circuit Court to homicide by motor vehicle while intoxicated, which might finally end the case against him.

The case has been reversed twice by the state's higher courts.

Assistant State's Attorney John P. Cox said he will seek the maximum sentence -- three years -- in effect when the accident occurred on June 30, 1989. Judge Joseph F. Murphy Jr. will sentence Glaser on June 3.

Glaser, formerly of Stevensville, was driving the wrong way on the Beltway when his car smashed head-on into a car driven by Everett Lee Jones, 30, of Northpoint. Glaser had a blood alcohol level of 0.24. The state standard for intoxication is 0.10.

Mr. Jones was the second person Glaser killed during a car wreck. He was convicted in 1983 of homicide by motor vehicle and served 20 days in the Anne Arundel County jail.

Assistant Public Defender A. Stewart Lyons said Glaser will be credited with 22 months spent in jail after the 1989 crash. Not to do so could raise the question of double jeopardy that has haunted the case, the defense attorney said.

After the accident, Glaser paid a $35 fine for driving the wrong way. Prosecutors used the traffic violation to convict him of automobile manslaughter. He was later sentenced to five years in prison.

The Court of Special Appeals reversed the conviction, ruling prosecutors violated Glaser's constitutional protection against double jeopardy by mentioning that he had driven the wrong way. Double jeopardy means being prosecuted twice for the same offense.

The case was returned to Baltimore County where, in September 1991, Judge John Grason Turnbull II dismissed the more serious charges. Mr. Cox appealed the dismissal. The Court of Special Appeals agreed and sent the case back for a third trial.

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