May 22, 2003

The Honorable Thomas V. Mike Miller, Jr.
President of the Senate
State House
Annapolis MD 21401

Dear Mr. President:

In accordance with Article II, Section 17 of the Maryland Constitution, today I have vetoed Senate Bill 133 - Criminal Law - Child Abuse and Child Sexual Abuse - Increased Penalties.

This bill establishes the crimes of child abuse in the first and second degrees, establishes terms of imprisonment for those crimes, establishes a subsequent offender penalty, and increases from 15 to 25 years the maximum term of imprisonment for a person who causes sexual abuse to a minor. The bill also adds a definition of severe physical injury for the purpose of the crime of child abuse in the first degree.

House Bill 588, which was passed by the General Assembly and signed by me, accomplishes the same purpose. Therefore, it is not necessary for me to sign Senate Bill 133.

Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr.