Prosecutors to refile drug charges against driver in Oxford fatality

EASTON — Worcester County prosecutors are expected to refile drug charges against an 18-year-old Brooklyn man whose car allegedly fatally struck an Oxford pedestrian in July, after an inconclusive substance analysis prompted a dismissal of the initial charges during a Tuesday, Jan. 7, trial.

Dante Marquis Kane was charged on June 12, 2019, in Ocean City with possession of heroin and possession of heroin with intent to distribute after patrol officers, during an incident separate from the fatal Oxford crash, searched his vehicle on June 11 and found a substance they suspected was heroin.

Both charges, one of which is a felony offense, were dropped in Worcester County Circuit Court earlier this week. But, according to Chief Pat Maxwell of the Oxford Police Department, whom prosecutors briefed on the drug case, new charges will be filed by Friday, Jan. 10.

Maxwell said Worcester County Assistant State’s Attorney Joaquin Cabrera informed him that, because of the substance analysis results, the state dropped the previous charges and will “recharge under the statute of selling fake narcotics.”

While Maxwell said he didn’t want to speculate on the exact charges the Worcester County prosecutors will file, he said Cabrera, who mainly prosecutes felony drug cases, indicated he “will probably go for” a felony charge.

Kane, who was arrested following the June 11 incident and later released on a $5,000 bond paid by a bail bondsman, was not present at the Jan. 7 drug trial, court documents stated. Kane cited “transportation issues” and reportedly notified his counsel he would be “unable to attend.”

The documents indicated Patrick Gilbert, Kane’s public defender, was present on Kane’s behalf.

Kane has not yet been charged in Talbot County for his alleged role in the death of Edith Jane Beglin, 71, of Oxford, who died the evening of July 1, 2019, after Kane’s car hit her as she tried to walk across Oxford Road.

Beglin was fatally struck while she was walking to a meeting at the Oxford firehouse, where she served as the Oxford Fire Company Ladies Auxiliary president.

Talbot County State’s Attorney Scott Patterson said in a statement that the investigation into Beglin’s death, which was conducted primarily by the Talbot County Sheriff’s Office, was forwarded to his office and is under review.

Maxwell said the case against Kane in Worcester County is a “totally different animal” from the case of Kane’s alleged crime in Oxford. He said Patterson’s office has the case and “the ball’s in his court.”

“We’re just waiting to see what (Patterson’s) going to do,” Maxwell said. “We’ll wait to see how that plays out, what charges are placed and what transpires from there.”

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