Judge twice lost license to drive car Burns charged in Dec. with driving while document suspended

Other suspension in 1994

Earlier step taken after he failed 2 times to deal with ticket

February 27, 1997|By Mike Farabaugh | Mike Farabaugh,SUN STAFF

A Carroll County judge, accused of driving on a suspended license in December, had his Maryland license suspended three years ago for failing to appear in court or pay the fine for a speeding ticket.

Baltimore County court records show that Circuit Judge Luke K. Burns Jr. lost his license Feb. 28, 1994, after failing to appear in court three days earlier for the speeding ticket.

He had been cited for driving 70 mph in a 55-mph zone at 11: 58 p.m. Oct. 26, 1993, on Interstate 795 north of Mount Wilson Lane, court records show.

The MVA lifted that suspension May 9, 1994, after Burns paid a $60 fine.

Burns, whose license was suspended again in February 1996, was charged after he was involved in a minor traffic accident Dec. 13 in Westminster. He is scheduled for trial March 12 in the District Court of Carroll County on the most recent charge of driving with a suspended license

The case will be handled by a Howard County prosecutor and heard by a judge from outside judicial District 10, which includes Howard and Carroll counties.

Motor Vehicle Administration records show that Burns, 63, of Westminster now has a valid license with two points on his driving record.

The judge was stopped by Baltimore County police Aug. 11, 1995. According to court records, he was traveling 78 mph in a 50-mph zone on Route 140 west of Interstate 795.

Burns twice failed to appear for trial in that case and his license was suspended Feb. 8, 1996, MVA records show. He paid a $110 fine last month, and the MVA lifted the suspension. But that was after the traffic mishap Dec. 13 that led to his current legal problem.

A state police report shows Burns was driving west on Route 140 in Westminster when he tried to turn left on wet pavement at a crossover near Leidy Road and lost control of his 1989 Nissan. The car struck a curb and a road sign.

Police charged Burns with negligent driving, driving at a speed greater than reasonable or prudent for road conditions and driving while suspended.

Burns may pay fines on the first two charges, but he must face in court the charge of driving while his license was suspended.

If convicted of driving while suspended, Burns could face a maximum penalty of a $500 fine, six months in jail and three points on his driving record.

MVA records show Burns received two points on his record in the 1995 incident, for exceeding the speed limit by 10 mph.

James Lang, a spokesman for the MVA, said yesterday that speeding convictions between 10 mph and 29 mph over the limit are two-point violations. He said driving 30 mph over the limit is a five-point violation.

Burns declined to comment yesterday, saying, "I better remain silent in this matter."

Pub Date: 2/27/97

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