October 25, 2013 | by Michael K. Lavers
Dwyer sentenced in drunken boating, driving cases
Don Dwyer, Maryland, gay news, Washington Blade

Maryland state Del. Don Dwyer (R-Anne Arundel County)

An anti-gay state lawmaker on Friday was sentenced to 60 days in jail after pleading guilty to two drunken boating and driving charges.

Retired Harford County Circuit Court Judge Emory Plitt, Jr., sentenced state Del. Don Dwyer (R-Anne Arundel County) in connection with an August 2012 crash on the Magothy River in Pasadena that left him, two other adults and four children injured. Dwyer on Friday also pleaded guilty to a charge of driving under the influence of alcohol after Anne Arundel County police pulled over his car on Route 100 in Pasadena in August.

Dwyer, 55, in May pleaded guilty to operating his boat while under the influence of alcohol.

The Anne Arundel County Republican was to have received probation under the plea deal he reached with prosecutors, but Anne Arundel District Court Judge Robert Wilcox rejected it. He sentenced him to 30 days in jail and a year’s probation and ordered him to pay a $1,000 fine.

Dwyer appealed the sentence, but he once again pleaded guilty to the charge in August.

Dwyer, 55, has been among Maryland’s most outspoken opponents of marriage rights for same-sex couples.

He said before lawmakers in 2012 approved the state’s same-sex marriage bill that nuptials for gays and lesbians in Massachusetts indoctrinated the commonwealth’s public school students into homosexuality.

Dwyer in 2006 tried to remove Baltimore Circuit Court Judge M. Brooke Murdoch from the bench after she found Maryland’s same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional. The Anne Arundel County Republican in 2010 sought to impeach Attorney General Doug Gansler, who formally announced his gubernatorial campaign last month, after he announced the state would recognize same-sex marriages legally performed in other jurisdictions.

Dwyer told the Maryland Gazette in January that then-Del. Tiffany Alston (D-Prince George’s County) and two Republican delegates who voted for the same-sex marriage bill contributed to his alcohol abuse.

The Maryland Gazette reported Dwyer must begin serving his sentence by Nov. 9, but he is allowed to serve them consecutively and on weekends.

Plitt also sentenced the Anne Arundel County Republican to three years probation on the drunken boating charge. The Maryland Gazette said the judge also ordered Dwyer to complete an alcohol counseling program, attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and agree to random testing to prove he is not drinking.

The newspaper further reported Plitt agreed to suspend a $1,000 fine against Dwyer.

Michael K. Lavers has been a staff writer for the Washington Blade since May 2012. The passage of Maryland's same-sex marriage law, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the burgeoning LGBT rights movement in Latin America and the consecration of gay New Hampshire Bishop V. Gene Robinson are among the many stories he has covered since his career began in 2002. Follow Michael

2 Comments
  • special sentence for a law maker, anyone one else would have been jailed right then, and not of been able to serve his time on just weekends! He also should have been fined more as far as I am concerned. He is a lawmaker and therefore, it is not like he does not know the state's laws.

  • Nothing but a drunken creep, who should go to jail for three years, PERIOD!

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