Not always the same thing. From the Baltimore Sun, a story about a DUI sentence that violated a new Maryland law.
The lenient sentence violates a 2009 law that is supposed to prohibit judges from issuing more than one probation before judgment within a 10-year period. Amplifying the error is the prominence of the driver: Carl O. Snowden, a longtime civil rights activist and former Annapolis alderman who holds a top position in the state attorney general’s office.
The case highlights the difficulties faced by Maryland’s judges and prosecutors in staying abreast of new laws, and raises questions about whether drunken driving is viewed as a serious offense, despite repeated efforts to curb it.
Or, it could highlight there are different sets of rules for people who hold high positions in the States Attorney’s office, and for the rest of us. Carl Snowden has two DUI convictions, and three DUI arrests. And he walked on conviction number two.
Call me cynical, but I’m pretty sure this judge wouldn’t have made the same mistake if it had been me.