Citizen of the Week!
ex-Baltimore Orioles baseball player--orders you to strip, bend over, spread your cheeks and "Get your grease! (2)"
According to law enforcement files, one of Maryland's favorite methods of dominating women has been forced, condom-free anal intercourse followed immediately by oral copulation.
But that's not exactly why our "busy" 5-foot-9 and 210-pound subject who calls himself a "multi-talented" product of Catholic schools is now locked in a California desert prison.
As is traditional among Southern Californians (3), the second week of April 2005 began for then-39-year-old Maryland and his wife with a trip to the movies, dinner at a Mexican restaurant and, after smoking crack cocaine, the hiring of two female prostitutes for a homemade gay-straight porno.
At some unknown point after the prostitutes left (4), Maryland ordered his wife to give him $3,800 before they drove to Van Nuys to purchase more crack. When they returned to OC, the man who has Hollywood producer, director and screenwriter credits, decided to accuse his wife of having an affair. It wasn't true, but that didn't matter.
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During a four-day drug and alcohol binge, Maryland repeatedly beat his wife with his fists, whipped her buttocks, stomach, legs and face with a metal coat hanger, slugged her with a phone, dragged her around the apartment by her hair (ripping out huge clumps), strangled her to the point of unconsciousness at least three times, raped her in every way possible, threatened to kill her, burned and cut her vagina (5), pummeled her anus, promised to slit her throat with a large butcher's knife and stab her genitals with scissors so that no other man would ever desire her again, bound her to a futon with panty hose, made her beg for sodomy, spit on her, urinated in her mouth, forced her to remain pants-less so that she wouldn't try to escape and refused to let her go to the bathroom.
Deviancy made Maryland hungry and so Day Four brought cravings for Chinese food. He left and his wife dialed 911. A sheriff's deputy found a terrified 49-year-old victim whose face was purple. Her eyes were filled with blood (from strangling) and both ears were black from contusions. Huge patches of her hair were missing. Burn marks, bruises and cuts covered her thighs, back, arms, face and genital area. She'd been "grotesquely beaten," the deputy reported. After six days of intensive hospital care, she was released (6). Not to mention the emotional trauma, she suffered permanent physical damage.
At trial, Maryland represented himself and argued that his wife's injuries were either self-inflicted or a result of her requests for him to "humiliate" her if, in his view, she misbehaved. Violent sex was her preference--not his, noted the man who ends his conversations with "God bless you" and possesses incredibly neat penmanship.
"This may sound incongruous (7) but I am a deeply devoted Christian," Maryland told a judge. "In fact, I am also a minister and a church elder . . . Saving lives has been my calling from high school."
Besides, he said, as "a productive member of society" he wanted to get back to developing big dollar Hollywood film projects.
Maryland's position might have been strengthened if, according to a long rap sheet, he hadn't assaulted a woman and her sister in 1986; beat a man and two good Samaritans outside a bar in 1988; punched and kicked a woman he was dating in 1989; assaulted two Canadian women (leaving one partially paralyzed) in 1991; committed forgery and spousal abuse in 1995, the same year he beat, choked and tortured another woman; assaulted a woman (causing serious bodily injury) in 1996; transported cocaine in 1997; illegally possessed controlled substances in 1999; beat two other women in 2000 and 2001, winning deportation from Canada; and committed a 2002 battery (8).
In 2007, a jury convicted Maryland on 18 felony charges (including attempted murder, torture, forcible spousal rape, kidnapping, false imprisonment, aggravated mayhem and criminal threats) stemming from the Lake Forest attacks on his wife. Prosecutor Lynda Fernandez argued that the punishment should be severe. His Hollywood pals weighed in with guarantees of his character, even pointing out that he'd finished film projects under budget and on time. But Judge John D. Conley, a former prosecutor, opined that he'd never seen a more "intelligent, articulate and charming" man commit such "shocking" crimes. He issued a sentence of 130 years plus two consecutive life terms with the possibility of parole.
Maryland still refuses to accept responsibility (9). In filings at the state court of appeal based in Santa Ana, he says he and his wife had "a wonderful relationship," blames recreational use of cocaine for any mistakes he might have made and argues the absurd: that his victim is equally responsible (10) for her beatings.
Last month, the justices considered Maryland's assertions and reviewed the fairness of his trial. They sanctioned his convictions with little fanfare. But they agreed with his contention that a technicality precluded Conley from using one particular prior battery in his sentencing calculations. They ordered a new trial on that allegation. (The DA's office hasn't yet decided its next move.) Nevertheless, it's likely that Maryland will have to serve at least the next 30 years in prison before he can ask to re-enter society (11).
Until then, he's apparently going to need an assistant (12).
(1) He played an FBI special agent.
(2) Actual Maryland quote from police files. He kept KY Jelly near his bed.
(3) I joke. Smoking crack and renting prostitutes isn't that commonplace.
(4) Maryland wanted to show his jury his homemade porno films; a judge said no thanks.
(5) We'll leave it at that.
(6) Maryland fled to Kern County, CA but was located after his cell phone was traced by the California Highway Patrol. A high-speed pursuit, a crash and his capture followed.
(7) During three decades covering crime, I've never seen a wife beater with a decent vocabulary until now.
(8) Is there any wonder that folks have demanded a Three-Strikes law?
(9) Maryland claims prosecutors "railroaded" him; A psychologist who studied him called him "grandiose in his self-perceptions."
(10) Why not? He says the devil sent his wife "here to destroy my life."
(11) He taught himself how to play the saxophone during a previous stint in prison.
(12) In his LA Weekly ad, Maryland asks that applicants include a cover letter.
(Periodically at OCWeekly.com, discover the depths of human depravity in Orange County, California.)
Click HERE for previous "Citizen of the Week!" winners.
--R. Scott Moxley
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