Please educate your children on Maryland’s Good Samaritan Law, which protects people assisting in an emergency overdose situation from arrest and prosecution for certain crimes.
Never leave someone who has overdosed.
According to a fact sheet from Maryland’s Department of Health, the purpose of this law is to encourage people who see an overdose caused by alcohol or other drugs to seek medical assistance without fear of arrest or prosecution for:
• Possessing or using drugs.
• Possessing or using drug paraphernalia.
• Providing alcohol to minors.
The law applies to everyone who seeks, provides or helps with getting medical assistance for someone who has overdosed after ingesting drugs or alcohol. The law also applies to the person who has received help because someone else sought assistance.
The law protects a person from violation of a condition of pretrial release, probation or parole if the evidence was solely obtained as a result of a person seeking, providing or assisting with medical help to save someone’s life.
The law does not protect someone who sees a medical emergency and doesn’t help.
Specifically, the law protects people from criminal arrest, charge or prosecution for the following six misdemeanors when the evidence is obtained solely because of the act of seeking medical assistance:
• § 5-601: Possessing or Administering CDS
• § 5-619: Drug Paraphernalia
• § 5-620: Controlled Paraphernalia
• § 10-114: Underage Possession of Alcohol
• § 10-116: Obtaining Alcohol for Underage Consumption
• § 10-117: Furnishing for or allowing underage consumption of alcohol
The law does not apply to drug felonies or other crimes not listed above. It also does not prevent law enforcement from conducting an investigation and gathering evidence.