Maryland Man Charged With Assault, Arson After Attacking Wife
Assault charges are taken seriously in Maryland. Even attempting to cause serious injury to a person can result in felony charges, which can result in decades in prison. That’s why you should try to refrain from attacking people, particularly your own spouse.
A Maryland man is facing multiple criminal charges after attacking his wife and catching his house on fire. The incident occurred on the morning of March 18 on Morning Walk Drive in Hagerstown.
Police were called to the home after the wife awoke to her husband hitting her with a hammer. The man then tried to strangle her. A woman in the home tried to break up the incident, but she was attacked as well. A child in the home called 911. All the victims escaped the home.
The woman was treated by emergency crews for severe wounds to her head and arms. As she was being treated, police saw smoke coming from the garage. Police entered the garage and found two vehicles on fire. The woman’s husband was lying next to a bottle of lighter fluid. He was found unconscious. The fire was extinguished by the Hagerstown Fire Department.
The man was initially taken to Meritus Medical Center, but he was later airlifted to Bay View Burn Center to be treated for severe burns. The man’s wife was taken to Meritus Medical Center for medical treatment. She was the only one who suffered injuries in the incident.
The man was arrested and charged with multiple crimes, including first-degree assault, second-degree assault, reckless endangerment, first-degree arson and second-degree arson.
Arson in Maryland
Maryland Code, Criminal Law § 6-101 makes it illegal to willfully and maliciously set fire to a dwelling or a structure in which a person is inside. This can result in a charge of first-degree arson, which is a felony. The punishment includes up to 30 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $50,000.
A dwelling refers to a structure where a person can stay overnight and may include a shop, kitchen, barn, stable or outbuilding. A structure can also refer to a vehicle, watercraft or other type of construction. Examples include a railroad car, tent, bridge, pier, wharf or public building.
Also, the person must have had intent when setting the structure on fire. Willfully means that the act was done on purpose, while maliciously means that the person intended to cause harm to another person.
There are two main types of arson. First-degree arson refers to a fire causing damage greater than $1,000, while second-degree arson refers to instances where the damage was under $1,000.
Contact a Maryland Criminal Defense Attorney Today
Assault and arson crimes are punished harshly. You will need a solid defense to avoid a conviction. Without one, your life will be changed forever. These are often felony charges that can follow you through your personal and professional lives.
The Columbia assault lawyers at the Law Offices of Todd K. Mohink, P.A. can offer aggressive representation. To schedule a consultation, call (410) 774-5987 or fill out the online form. We have two offices to serve you.