Snowstorm delays 44 criminal cases for 27 defendants

January 26, 2000|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

Heavy snow closed Circuit Court of Carroll County yesterday, postponing 44 criminal cases involving 27 defendants before four judges.

Weather derailed judges' plans for a busy criminal docket, described as more an "aberration than the norm" by Raymond E. Beck Sr., administrative judge for the county's Circuit Court.

Beck said retired Judge Francis M. Arnold planned to "clean up some leftover business" that he did not want to leave for his successor, Judge M. Michael Galloway.

"We're making a strong push for a fourth judge by about the time the new District Court building is expected to be completed in 2001 or 2002," Beck said. "The figures show that we need 1.1 new judges to handle the growing case load and we hope to persuade the Administrative Office of the Courts in Annapolis to provide another judge by then."

Beck, Galloway and Judge Luke K. Burns Jr. handle about 5,000 criminal and civil cases in Carroll's Circuit Court with occasional assistance from retired judges.

"The numbers are rising as you would expect when the [county's] population is growing," Beck said.

Carroll's population is about 152,000, up from 123,000 in 1990.

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