District 4B challenger favors death penalty CARROLL COUNTY ELECTION 1994

June 29, 1994|By Kerry O'Rourke | Kerry O'Rourke,Sun Staff Writer

The Democratic challenger in the District 4B delegate race said, if elected, he would work to make justice more "swift and severe" in Maryland.

"The ultimate crime -- murder -- deserves the ultimate punishment -- death," said Roy S. Pfeiffer of Frederick County. "I further believe executions should be public."

Mr. Pfeiffer, 40, is running against two-term incumbent Del. Donald B. Elliott, 62, a New Windsor Republican, in the November election.

As of yesterday, no other candidate had filed to run for the District 4B seat. The deadline to register is July 5.

Mr. Pfeiffer, who has lived between Union Bridge and Johnsville since 1981, is campaigning on other issues, but his stands on crime and the legal system are his most extreme.

He believes the state court system should be scrapped for the most part and replaced with "a people's court."

"The main function of our legal system as it exists today is to ensure that people with a degree in law [lawyers and judges] can make a comfortable living off the rest of us," Mr. Pfeiffer said.

Mr. Elliott, a Union Bridge pharmacist, said yesterday that he understands the public's frustration with lawyers and the legal system, but that it should not be abolished.

"I feel due process is so important," he said.

People who go to court should be accompanied by an expert in interpreting the law, Mr. Elliott said.

The delegate also said the legislature must continue to work on anti-crime bills.

"I guess I don't agree with the more extremist views of my opponent," Mr. Elliott said.

Mr. Pfeiffer is self-employed and said he restores homes built before the Civil War. He also has been a substitute teacher in Frederick County schools.

He is a Frederick County native. This is his first bid for public office.

Redistricting in 1991 added three Frederick County precincts -- including Mr. Pfeiffer's -- to Mr. Elliott's district. District 4B also includes nine Carroll County precincts, but no longer encompasses any in Howard County.

Mr. Pfeiffer said he decided to run for a delegate seat because he was "frustrated with politics" and worried about his children's future.

"I am a working man who makes a living by getting things built and problems solved along the way," he said.

Allowing the public to watch executions would be a deterrent to crime, Mr. Pfeiffer said.

"Give people who prefer to solve their problems with violence a vivid picture of society's wrath before they consider the crime," he said.

He said he wasn't sure whether executions should be televised. He said he would like to execute a criminal in the same manner -- shooting or stabbing, for example -- in which the criminal killed his victim.

Mr. Pfeiffer also proposed that the state and counties should build smaller and more local schools, especially elementary schools.

On the topic of waste disposal, he said the state should consider building a landfill and recycling center in an abandoned strip mine pit in Cumberland. Trash from around Maryland could be shipped there by train, he said.

Mr. Elliott owns Union Bridge Pharmacy and is a member of the House Environmental Matters Committee.

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