On Friday, October 18, 2019, Alex Christopher Finnerty appeared before the Honorable Sidney S. Campen in the Circuit Court for Queen Anne’s County. He entered a plea of guilty to two counts of Second Degree Assault and Concealed Dangerous Weapon (Counts one, two, and six in Case No. C-17-CR-19-000427), one count of Motor Vehicle/Unlawful Taking (Count two in Case No. C-17-CR-19-000400), and Possession (not marijuana—fentanyl) (count one in Case No. C-17-CR-19-000456). He was sentenced to 19 years to the Division of Corrections, execution of that sentence suspended as to all but 13 years to serve. This sentence is consecutive to a ten (10) year sentence that Mr. Finnerty received on Tuesday, October 15, 2019, when he was found in violation of probation. Upon his release from the 23 years of incarceration, Mr. Finnerty will be on three (3) years of supervised probation. These matters were prosecuted by Lance G. Richardson, State’s Attorney, and Christine Dulla Rickard, Deputy State’s Attorney.
These convictions stem from three separate incidents. The first incident (Case No. 456) occurred on March 17, 2019. Mr. Finnerty was found in the possession of fentanyl after he failed to stop at a stop sign and attempted to evade police. The second incident (Case No. 400) involves the theft of a motorcycle from a family in Stevensville. Mr. Finnerty stole this motorcycle, drove it, and abandoned it at the Dollar General in Stevensville in an attempt to elude police. The third incident (Case No. 427) involved the apprehension of Mr. Finnerty who was wanted on several arrest warrants. Between July 8 and July 25, 2019, there was an ongoing search for Mr. Finnerty. A concerned citizen called the police after seeing him attempt to charge a cell phone at a local business. When law enforcement responded, Mr. Finnerty gave chase and was pursued by a number of police officers, including Major Boardman and Deputy Williams of the Queen Anne’s County Office of the Sheriff. During the course of his apprehension, Mr. Finnerty pulled a knife on them, fought them, and attempted to manipulate Deputy Williams’s firearm as he was subdued into handcuffs and shackles.
Mr. Finnerty’s criminal record, prior to these convictions, consisted of a 2013 Conviction for Second Degree Assault, Resist Arrest, and Attempt to Elude Police in Official Police Vehicle by Failing to Stop (Case No. 17-K-13-0008567), a 2014 Conviction for Taking Vehicle without Owner’s Consent and Attempt to Elude Police by Fleeing on Foot (Case No. 17-K-14-009048), a 2015 Conviction for Attempt to Elude Police by Fleeing on Foot (Case No. 17-K-15-009613), a 2015 Conviction for Resist Arrest (Case No. 17-K-15-009611), a 2015 Conviction for Malicious Destruction of Property Less Than $1,000 (Case No. 17-K-15-009644), and a 2015 Conviction for Third Degree Burglary and Second Degree Escape (17-K-15-009645). He was on parole for the first matter (8567) and supervised probation in the last matter (9645) when he incurred all of the new charges for which he is now convicted.
Mr. Finnerty’s complicated criminal record began on May 30, 2013 when he bailed out of his vehicle, fled police during a traffic stop, and was apprehended after assaulting and attempting to disarm law enforcement. After his pleas of guilty, Mr. Finnerty was sentenced, on the assault, to ten years, execution of that sentence suspended as to all but one year to serve at the Queen Anne’s County Detention Center; on the resist, three years to serve, consecutive; and, on the Elude, six months concurrent. He was released on supervised probation on March 7, 2014. In June and July of 2014, between three and four months after his release from incarceration, Mr. Finnerty violated his probation by receiving new charges (which resulted in a new conviction for Attempting to Elude Police). On November 25, 2014, Mr. Finnerty was found in violation of his probation and continued on probation. In the spring of 2015, Mr. Finnerty was cited again for failing to comply with probation. He was alleged to have to report as directed to his probation agent, failed to participate in substance abuse and mental health treatment as directed, and, he was charged with numerous new offenses in five separate criminal and serious traffic matters. On October 13, 2015, Mr. Finnerty entered pleas of guilty to five offenses in four separate criminal matters. The most significant of the matters was Case 9645 in which he entered a plea of guilty to Third Degree Burglary and Second Degree Escape. In this, Mr. Finnerty escaped police custody during processing and broke into a Centreville resident’s home. As a result of his pleas, Mr. Finnerty was found in violation of his probation and given nine years of prison to serve. In light of this sentence, the Court gave Mr. Finnerty 13 years, execution of the sentence suspended, and five years of supervised probation in the burglary/escape matter. Mr. Finnerty was paroled from the Division of Correction (Case No. 8567) on January 28, 2019 and was being supervised by the Department of Parole and Probation. When Mr. Finnerty was charged again with a new offense and found to be using controlled dangerous substances, he was ordered into substance abuse treatment on June 4, 2019. Unfortunately, Mr. Finnerty was unable to comply with the treatment provider’s request and was discharged from treatment on June 27, 2019. However, instead of returning to the Detention Center as ordered by the Court, Mr. Finnerty eluded apprehension and incurred the additional offenses.
While the State does have compassion and understanding for Mr. Finnerty’s age and struggle with drug addiction, it absolutely cannot and will not tolerate his threat to law enforcement, public safety, and the community’s well-being. The State’s Attorney’s Office would like to express their deepest appreciation to the law enforcement members of the Queen Anne’s County Office of the Sheriff and the Maryland State Police who, in addition to their efforts to maintain the safety of the community, contributed to the charging, apprehension, and conviction of Mr. Finnerty. These individuals include but are not limited to: Tfc. Carroll and Tfc. Fohs of the Maryland State Police, Centreville Barrack, Dep. Argubright, Dep. Sutton, Dep. Williams, DFC. Dickey, DFC. Shawkey, Cpl. Schwink, and Major Boardman of the Queen Anne’s County Office of the Sheriff.