Assembly Bill A2577B
2019-2020 Legislative Session
|AND.....A FIRST AMENDMENT THREAT!!!!!!!|
Davis was convicted of enticing a minor over the internet to have sex
with him and traveling across state lines to have sex with a minor. He
arrives March 25, 2019, to be sentenced in federal court in Easton.
(Rudy Miller | For lehighvalleylive.com)|
|The System spit him out and crushed him!|
No penalty was established for those who delayed reporting or failed to report altogether. Even Maryland legislators had no idea the gaping hole in their own law. Maryland Senator Joan Carter Conway (D-Baltimore) said,An individual may not intentionally prevent or interfere with the making of a report of suspected abuse or neglect as required by law. A person who violates this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, on conviction, is subject to imprisonment not exceeding 5 years or a fine not exceeding $10,000 or both.
The new law faced opposition from those who thought the punishment was draconian, and that taking away professional licensing was punishment enough for failure to report. In fact, Del Kathleen Dumais (D-Montgomery) reportedly said that since the 2015 license revocation law hadn’t been used, they shouldn’t pass more laws. Arguments like these, combined with opposition from the Jewish and Catholic lobbies kept this bill languishing in committee.I was shocked. I didn’t realize that we were only one of two [states without penalties for failure to report]
While this law alone does not solve the sexual assault investigation and prosecution gap in Maryland, it does provide a tool for more progressive prosecutors to begin unraveling this crime.(B) A PERSON WHO VIOLATES THIS SECTION IS GUILTY OF A MISDEMEANOR AND ON CONVICTION IS SUBJECT TO A FINE NOT EXCEEDING $10,000 OR IMPRISONMENT NOT EXCEEDING 3 YEARS OR BOTH.
But Maryland Code of Family Law Section 5-705 provides an exemption from these laws from clergy if they are:…health practitioner, police officer, educator, or human service worker, acting in a professional capacity
bound to maintain the confidentiality of that communication under canon law, church doctrine, or practice
|Rabbi Shmuel Kamenetsky|
Call CHANA [our religiously directed private community organization], and together with their guidance and support, they will help you navigate if and when to involve the police, CPS, or whatever may be most appropriate.Should a school principal, teacher, or healthcare worker be charged under the new mandatory reporting law, the vague wording will put prosecutors and judges in the uncomfortable situation of litigating the intricacies of Jewish law (halacha). Will the rabbis who delay reporting abuse while they run internal investigations be able to claim their behavior is in keeping with canon Orthodox Jewish law? What makes a person a Rabbi? In the ultra-Orthodox world, often a formal ordination (smicha) process is not required, merely a letter from a school principal (Rosh Yeshiva) calling a student a Rabbi. Could a school teacher charged under the new law get a last minute smicha exempting him from the law?
Turning clergy into policemen is very dangerous…….If we try to hurt how religious societies function, it will hurt childrenRon Halber of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington offered tepid support to clergy reporting, but then walked it back with the caveat:
In some traditions there are privileged communications that take place between religious authorities and parishioners. We want to make sure there’s nothing blocking free exerciseIt is ironic that prosecutors in Maryland are investigating the Catholic Archdiocese of Baltimore, but have made no public inquiries into the Jewish Archdiocese (known as the Vaad of Baltimore and Vaad of Greater Washington). A push for mandatory clergy reporting in Maryland as is currently under debate in DC and Virginia would be a great first step.