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State’s Attorney Wes Adams Announces New Chief of Special Victims Unit

Annapolis, MD — Anne Arundel County State’s Attorney Wes Adams announced today that Mary-Ann R. Burkhart will join the Anne Arundel County Office of the State’s Attorney as the Chief of the Special Victims Unit. Ms. Burkhart comes to the Office of the State’s Attorney from the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys in Washington, DC, where she served as the Director of the Child Abuse Prosecution Project.

“Throughout her distinguished career, Mary-Ann has accrued a level of expertise that has made her a national leader in her field,” said State’s Attorney Wes Adams. “We are excited to have a prosecutor and trainer of her caliber lead the unit that protects our most vulnerable victims.”

Ms. Burkhart brings with her 26 years of prosecution experience focused on complex crimes against vulnerable adults, women and children. Her legal career began in 1991 as an Assistant State Attorney in Miami-Dade County, Florida, under the Honorable Janet Reno, where she specialized in domestic violence and child abuse cases.

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In 1997, Ms. Burkhart joined the staff of the National District Attorney’s Association’s National Center for Prosecution of Child Abuse as a Senior Attorney. From 1997 through 2003, she traveled worldwide and taught extensively on all aspects of child physical and sexual abuse and child homicide cases. She also authored numerous articles and book chapters on all facts of child abuse and neglect, child homicide and sexual assault, and was the editor of the 3rd edition of Investigation and Prosecution of Child Abuse and Neglect, American Prosecutor’s Research Institute, Sage Publications, 2003.

In late 2003, Ms. Burkhart returned to the courtroom as a homicide prosecutor and then as Training Director at the Office of the State’s Attorney for Baltimore City. As Training Director, she was responsible for the training and mentoring programs for the staff of over 200 attorneys in the office.

In 2010, Ms. Burkhart took her expertise to the Anne Arundel County Office of the State’s Attorney, where she specialized in child abuse cases and vulnerable adult and elder abuse cases.Ms. Burkhart also has extensive experience in providing training and technical assistance on a national level.

In 2014, she returned to the National District Attorney’s Association as the Director of the National Center for Prosecution of Child Abuse prior to being named Director of the Association of Prosecuting Attorney’s Child Abuse Prosecution Project in 2016.

Ms. Burkhart is licensed in Maryland and Florida and is a member of the United States Supreme Court Bar. She will be sworn in as an Assistant State’s Attorney of the Anne Arundel County Circuit Court on October 29, 2018.

David M. Higgins II

David M. Higgins was born in Baltimore and grew up in Southern Maryland. He has had a passion for journalism since high school. After spending many years in the Hospitality Industry he began working in Digital Marketing, eventually leading him back to his passion. David started The Southern Maryland Chronicle in December 2017 and has grown it to become the #1 news source in Southern Maryland.

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