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For Immediate Release
October 22, 2003
Contact: Sean Caine, 410-576-6357
scaine@oag.state.md.us

MARINE CONTRACTOR SENTENCED FOR
WETLANDS VIOLATIONS

Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced that Scott Howard O'Day, 47, of the 1300 block of Wildwood Beach Road in Essex, was sentenced today for illegally filling State wetlands. O'Day, who is a marine contractor, was convicted last April of illegally filling wetlands along Back River after a trial in the District Court of Maryland for Baltimore County. Judge G. Darrell Russell fined O'Day $1,000 and ordered O'Day to attempt to obtain a license through the Board of Public Works.

According to trial testimony, O'Day obtained State approval to replace a bulkhead on his next-door neighbor's property, as well as a required building permit from Baltimore County. O'Day then replaced the bulkhead on his own residence at the same time. O'Day although having just obtained permits for the work he did for the neighbor, did not even apply for State or County approvals before completing work on his property. Additionally, Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Resource Management employees testified that a review of aerial photographs of the shoreline maintained by Baltimore County indicated O'Day had moved some parts of the bulkhead forward several feet into the river.

It is against the law to dredge or fill in State tidal wetlands without obtaining a license. The maximum penalty for violations is a fine of up to $1,000.

The conviction follows a joint investigation conducted by the Environmental Crimes Unit of the Office of the Attorney General and the Maryland State Police, with the assistance of the Maryland Department of the Environment.

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