A former Frederick County school board member was sentenced Wednesday in Washington County Circuit Court to a year in jail with all but three months suspended after pleading guilty to using a texting device in a crash that injured four people.

Lois Amsel Jarman, 60, of Knoxville, had been sentenced April 1 in District Court to a year in jail with all but 10 days suspended after pleading guilty to use of a text-messaging device while driving causing an accident resulting in death or serious bodily injury. She was also sentenced to three years probation, court records said.

She appealed the case and pleaded guilty to the same charge in Circuit Court, where Judge Andrew F. Wilkinson imposed the new sentence, according to Assistant State’s Attorney Leon Debes. Jarman was also placed on three years probation.

She was ordered to begin serving her sentence on Aug. 7, court records said.


(38) comments


There were several posts - including one of mine - that were deleted asking what would be the appropriate punishment for Trump since epidemiologists with the Trump administration say that his lack of action to promote testing and masks cost about 200,000 American lives. That may sound like trolling, but it is in response to CD's question about whether Lois's penalties should include all the medical bills and pain and suffering that occurred because of the accidents she caused. What about the pain and suffering and medical bills Trump's actions caused? Should he be likewise be held responsible?


She should also be responsible for the $300k in medical expenses not covered by Showe's insurance.


Oh, she will be SWY1009, that amount, plus liability for pain and suffering. Her selfish stupidity has put her family's financial future in a world of hurt. Maybe publicizing all of the upcoming lawsuits against her might just wake some people up, and phone or text while driving.


"and not phone or text while driving


This was an interesting discussion on what 'should' the sentence be. I suggest that the sentence should match the sentence if she was driving under the influence. Both texting and drinking are voluntary acts the driver willing takes part in. Wandering attention due to intoxication or distraction cause the same result. The penalty should be the same. The only difference is the social stigma associated with DWI that is lacking (mostly) with texting.



Notice anything?


Lois, you have taught us all a lesson. While you must live with this, know you are still teaching how we must be held accountable. You were a very good School Board member. We miss you there.


I know why her sentence was lenient.




What a joke sentence. This sentence does not deter. It invites future illegal behavior, with any miscreants knowing they will only get a slap on the wrist if caught.


Three months in jail is not a slap on the wrist. That'd suck. Probably lose your job. As long as it is a real sentence and not, as CD notes, "home detention" or even weekends.


If you don't think that three months is a slap on the wrist for all the physical, emotional, and financial damage she did, shift, what would you consider a real sentence to be? And it's her attorney who is asking for home detention:

"Defense Attorney John Salvatore said he had asked both times for a sentence with all jail time suspended.

He said he plans to file a motion this week asking that Jarman be permitted to serve her three months confinement on home detention."


I don't know about you but I would not be texting while driving thinking "oh, it's no big deal because if I cause a crash it'll only be three months in jail". And I would doubt she will ever do this again. I totally oppose home detention or weekends; those are white privileges IMHO.


You didn't answer my question, shift, what would you consider a real sentence to be, consider all the damage she did? I do agree, though, that few, if any, would think about texting while driving with the attitude you described. Usually it takes something like this to change the minds of people who break the law in this manner. And by the way, I've read many times of black criminals who have removed ankle bracelets in order to violate their home detention sentences so, in my opinion, it is not a "white privilege."


Correction: "...'considering' all the damage she did?"


CD; this is what I think a real sentence is. I think three months is appropriate as long as it is three months straight in jail. I thought I was clear about this. I do not consider three months to be a "slap on the wrist" and stated that up front. Sending her to jail for three years will not improve the situation of those whose life she impacted.


Oh give it a break, fido. Is your TDS still THAT bad that you have to factor it into everything you write to every article? Good Lord, man, get a life!!!


No shift, I wasn't sure what you implied, but I am now. Personally, I think three months is a bit lenient. I think 3 years, with all but six months suspended would have been more appropriate considering the damage she did. This was not a little accidental fender bender in a mall parking lot, she changed the lives of several people significantly while knowingly engaged in an illegal act. Let the sentence suit the crime. We, here, don't always agree with sentences we hear of which were given to criminals, and the Frederick Fair incident AOC referenced is a prime example.


Just pointing out your gross hypocrisy Mr. Reid.


Fido's point is off topic in some ways, but it does get into the "white collar" versus "blue collar" crime and how they are treated. Rob a 7-11 with a gun and it is looked at differently than embezzling from investors.


Of course the examples you gave would be looked on differently, shift, they're the difference between violent and nonviolent crimes. Different crimes have different classifications and different classifications have different consequences.


But CD, the "crime" is that money was stolen. Holding a gun while doing it shouldn't make as much difference as the amount of money stolen. Again, wealthy white males have written the laws in such a way to minimize the impact of the types of crimes their buddies commit.


If you think stiff sentences deter crime, then why are the prisons overflowing?


Maybe because there are more prison-worthy crimes committed than there is room for the criminals?


pleads guilty of causing an accident where 4 people were injured because she was texting and driving. She hits a car, which causes that car to go into the other lane and strike yet another car. And she gets 10 days in jail. what a joke. The judicial system in this county, and Maryland in general is so incredibly lenient when it comes to crimes with vehicles, it's no wonder texting and driving has not gotten any better. The judge that levied this sentence should be ashamed.


Duffy, 10 days was the original sentence that she appealed. Agreed, it was a joke. Upon her appeal, she was given a sentence of one year, with all but 3 months suspended, so her actual jail time to be served sentence was lengthened by nearly 10X. The full year would have been more appropriate for her intentional "mistake".


Gabe, the only part I disagree with is the intentonal mistake. She violated the law intentionally, she did not intend the accident. Of course, the violation was intentional.


She violated the law intentionally knowing what the consequences could be. Those consequences are the reason why the laws were enacted.


Yes, but the penalty for intentionally texting while driving is not jail time.


Correct three, but this is:


Which is what she was charged with, and found guilty of. Now her lawyer wants to have that sentence served at home, just like nothing happened!


I was referring to the accusation that what she did was intentional. The only thing she did that was intentional was texting while driving. The car accident was an accident, and the 30 day penalty is appropriate - because it was her fault, not because it wasn't an accident. If she intentionally caused the crashes then a stiffer penalty would be appropriate.


Understood, three. Her willfull violation of the law resulted in a crash from which her victims may never fully recover. When someone engages in risky behavior, they should not be surprised when an adverse consequence occurs. She, and she alone, is responsible for her victims injuries.


Sorry, 3 month sentence - not 30 days. Not sure how anyone thinks 3 months in jail is a slap on the wrist for a 60-year old high school teacher, not to mention how much she will have to pay after civil court proceedings. That sounds pretty devastating to me.


Gabe, not that the FNP will report it, yesterday her attorney filed a motion to modify the sentence seeking "home detention" for the 3 month sentence.

As reported in the Hagerstown paper:

"Defense Attorney John Salvatore said he had asked both times for a sentence with all jail time suspended. He said he plans to file a motion this week asking that Jarman be permitted to serve her three months confinement on home detention."

Maybe she could get a change of venue and a new trial in Frederick County. Here you can assault a person which ultimately results in their death and be sentenced to attend anger management class.

Now if she could have a new trial in Montgomery County the probable sentence might result in an all expenses paid 21 day world cruise at the State's expense.

Time to move west! (Certainly not California)


[thumbup][thumbup][thumbup] AOC!


I’m flabbergasted she appealed the original sentence.


I was surprised to read that too. It sure came back and bit her in the a_ _. Serves her right.


Good, I'm glad to hear it, but the new sentence still doesn't suit the amount of physical and emotional damage she did. No time suspended would have been more appropriate. And she should NOT be allowed to serve her three months on home detention, that would be tantamount to serving no time at all. And I hope all the parties involved have civil actions filed against her, too.

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