Saturday, January 7, 2006

January 7

A man fatally shot an acquaintance in the parking lot of the TGIFriday's in Owings Mills at 11:00pm last night. An off-duty VA police officer witnessed the shooting and confronted the assailant, who then exchanged gunfire with the officer. The attacker hid and was sniffed out by a police dog.

On Saturday morning, a prisoner at the Anne Arundel County Detention Center, uh, "escaped by walking off".

Friday, January 6, 2006

January 6

Warren Fleming, the man killed yesterday at Security Square mall, was "described as a role model for aspiring young African-American entrepreneurs." He owned the Cingular Wireless store in the mall, as well as a Cingular store in Catonsville. He left behind his wife, a 7-year-old son, and a 5-year-old daughter. Police are investigating the act as a possible carjacking. A car that witnesses spotted at the scene was found at the Owings Mills Metro station with its engine running. As of 8:00 tonight, no arrests have been made in the murder.

34-year-old Raymont Hopewell is being held without bail on charges including five counts of first-degree murder and three counts of first-degree rape. Hopewell is accused of murdering 82-year-old Carlton Crawford in August, 78-year-old Lydia Wingfield (also in August), 78-year-old Sadie Mack in May, 88-year-old Sarah Shannon in 2002, and 60-year-old Constance Wills in 1999. There is no word on whether Hopewell was involved in last year's murders of Jessie Lee Jr (74), Robert Little (88), or Shirley Chisley (64), but investigators are reviewing cases for possible connections.

Dwight Watson has been identified as the cab driver who was murdered by two teenagers on New Year's Eve.

There is some suspicion of murder in the July 2005 death of Army Sgt. Juwan L. Johnson, a Baltimore resident who was finishing out his active duty in Germany before returning home to his pregnant wife. The Purple Heart recipient had survived a mine attack in Iraq, but according to his family he died from traumatic force to the upper torso.

Unique Coleman remained in critical condition at Shock Trauma last night after being shot 11 times and then giving birth. Her boyfriend, Marcel Foster, was shot once in the buttocks during the alleged carjacking.

Three of the four officers who were suspended with pay from the Southwestern district have been indicted on rape charges related to a woman's claim they forced her to have sex with them after arresting her as part of a drug investigation.

A 40-year-old man was arrested after a 36-year-old woman claimed she escaped from a motel room after being tied up for three days.

In the wake of a September 13 incident where a 21-year-old registered sex offender attempted to randomly pick up a child at Glen Burnie Elementary School (charges were later dropped), Gov. Ehrlich has proposed tough new restrictions against sex offenders.

The second Baltimore County mall shooting of the day occurred yesterday at White Marsh Mall. A group of three men got in a fight with a group of four men, and a shot was fired. No one was hurt, the group of three men was arrested, and the gun was recovered.

30-year-old Baltimore City resident Ian McDonald was sentenced to 20 years in prison for carrying crack, pot, and a loaded gun. He was sentenced in federal court, which is part of a strategy that should go into effect within a month and should result in stronger convictions and sentences. McDonald described himself as "an idiot" for breaking the law, and U.S. Attorney for Maryland Rod Rosenstein agreed with the assessment.

The family that cooks together books together: 39-year-old Sheila Beil was charged yesterday with running a meth lab in Millersville, one day after her husband, Michael Don Beil, was charged.

Baltimore has been named The Country's Fittest City by Men's Fitness magazine. It must be all of the heroin addiction and bullet holes that keeps us looking so fabulous.

Thursday, January 5, 2006

January 5

Police are seeking the person who fatally shot 25-year-old Gregory "Gotti" Ball at about 12:30am Tuesday in the 1300 block of Booth St.

The body of a 15-year-old boy from a North Baltimore group home was found in a railroad tunnel beneath the 2600 block of Greenmount. Vatell Antonio Murray was shot to death and had been dead for several hours when his body was found on Tuesday night. Police have no suspects or motive.

(For those of you who are counting, that makes six murders in the first three days of the year. It took us five whole days to kill six people last year.)

In the area's first shopping mall killing of 2006, 31-year-old Warren Fleming was fatally shot as he stepped out of his car at the Security Square mall in Baltimore County. Fleming was found near the Hecht's entrance at about 10:30 this morning. Police are searching for a silver 2002 Dodge Intrepid (Maryland tags MWH 755).

A 23-year-old pregnant woman who was shot early this morning has been taken to Shock Trauma in grave condition. Doctors are working to save the unborn child, who was due to be born in a few weeks. The woman was found in a car on an I-95 exit ramp after her boyfriend called police from a motel to report that they had been carjacked and he had been shot.

Identities of two New Year's Day murder victims in the Blotter: 16-year-old Ronny Martin was identified as the person found in a parked car on the 2600 block of Marbourne Ave. in Southwestern Baltimore, and 20-year-old Dahun Javon Jones is the man whose body was found in woods on the 3400 block of Spelman Rd. in South Baltimore's Cherry Hill. (Jones had been dead for 1 - 2 days, but his murder counts to the 2006 number.)

Also in the Blotter, a 22-year-old man was shot in the stomach, and a robber held a box cutter to the throat of a female clothing store employee in Canton.

Dan Rodricks profiles Alvester Rozier, the 79-year-old man who was shot to death because his son was involved in a drug dispute. Rodricks comes to an interesting conclusion for Baltimore: no one is to blame for Rozier's death "but punks from the drug life with guns."

Graham Buckmaster was captured as he drove through the Cumberland Gap into Tennessee. Buckmaster is charged with first- and second-degree murder in the New Year's Eve shooting death of 40-year-old Lisa Moore.

Ross Telp was sentenced to 33 years for stabbing his mother to death over an argument about scuffed hubcaps on her car.

The lawyers for dead convicted murderer Stefan Tyson Bell are trying to have his conviction overturned because he was waiting for an appeal when he died. Bell was sentenced to life for beating Joseph Demarest and then burying him alive.

The owner of Keeper's Market in Northeast Baltimore was shot during a robbery. He shot two of the three assailants, who are facing charges of attempted murder and armed robbery.

Police believe eight Harford County armed robberies might be connected.

In Frederick County, 51-year-old Patricia Nicholson was charged with 244 counts of animal abuse. 119 cats and three dogs were taken from her home, along with 184 dead cats. Contact the Frederick County animal control if you're interested in adopting.

In the "Stupid Companies who Make Identity Theft Really Easy" department, H&R Block sent out mailers that contained the recipient's name, address, and Social Security number on the outside of the envelope. The company played down their mistake by claiming it only happened on 3% of the mailings, and it won't happen again. No official word on whether it was "only" 3% of 10 envelopes or 3% of 6,000,000.

Michael Dronet was sentenced to 1 year and 1 day in prison for an illegal house-flipping business.

Air bags have been stolen from 16 Honda Civics between Ellicott City and Laurel.

And last but not least, there are some interesting comments under yesterday's post from Galt, who attended the public meeting on the BPD's arrest policies. The Sun also summarizes the meeting, stating Mayor O'Malley and Commissioner Hamm appeared before a "mostly defiant crowd".

Wednesday, January 4, 2006

January 4

Sun columnist and longtime Baltimore writer Michael Olesker has resigned under suspicion of plagiarism. I'm usually infuriated by cases involving lying and/or inept journalists, but on the surface this looks like a witch hunt to me.

Kevin J. Johns Jr., the man accused of strangling Philip E. Parker Jr. on a prison bus travelling from Hagerstown to Baltimore, will be tried in Baltimore County. Johns' attorneys were hoping for a Howard County trial since prosecutors there don't seek the death penalty as often as those in Baltimore County.

Joseph John DiAngelo Jr. pleaded guilty to assault and witness intimidation charges after paying two men $50 each to beat witness Vincent Harmon with table legs. One of the attackers was fatally injured when Harmon fought back. The initial crime stemmed from a roofing dispute regarding a duplex that was owned by the DiAngelo and Harmon families.

A public hearing is scheduled at 4:30pm today regarding the Baltimore Police Department's policies of arresting people on minor offenses yet never charging them with a crime.

A look at "Justice Monday" and difficulties facing former inmates as they attempt to re-enter society.

Four BPD officers have been suspended after allegations about illegal drugs and sex in the Southwestern District.

Christopher Marshall pleaded not guilty to running a meth lab in Anne Arundel County. He has been released and must report to a 28-day drug program.

Information in the Sun on corrupt lobbyist Jack Abramoff's ties to a company founded by Gov. Ehrlich's Deputy Chief of Staff Edward Miller. (I originally listed the company as being founded by Gov. Ehrlich. My mistake.)

In the Sun's Metro Digest, a 24-year-old drunk driver hit an ambulance with her Honda Civic, and a 77-year-old woman was conned out of $1,400 in a phone scam.

Montgomery County Circuit Court judge John Debelius ruled yesterday that mooning people is not illegal. However, Debelius was quoted as saying the the trial could have gone differently had defendant Raymond McNealy been charged with "being a jerk."

"Murder Ink" is missing from this week's City Paper, but the editors promise it will be back next week.

Tuesday, January 3, 2006

January 3

Work continues on a plan to imprison violent felons who carry guns in the city.

On that note, the Metro Digest reports a 20-year-old was shot in the stomach in Southwest Baltimore; his name and condition are unknown, and there is no known motive or suspect in the case. In the Blotter, an unidentified man in his mid-20s was in serious condition after being shot at 3:00pm on New Year's Day, and police are seeking information.

An officer at the Library of Congress shot his wife and was involved in a four-hour standoff with police in AccoKeek, MD.

Baltimore police have made four arrests in last week's home invasion and rape in Woodlawn.

ABC2 reports that Calvert County police are seeking a white GMC pickup (Maryland tags 85N235) owned by Graham Buckmaster in relation to the shooting death of Buckmaster's ex-girlfriend, Lisa Moore.

Montgomery county is working on legislation that will make driving without a license punishable by jail time. An advocate says the bill unfairly targets illegal immigrants.

Crimes against Annapolis' population of Hispanic immigrants appear to be on the rise.

Police continue to investigate the church robbery in Harford County, and a reward for information leading to an arrest has been established.

Monday, January 2, 2006

January 2

I just returned from vacation and will begin updating the site. Thanks for the offers to send me info. Chuck

A big start for 2006 with four murders between 1:45am and 9:30pm on January 1. 21-year-old Stephanie Mills was shot as she tried to break up a fight; 49-year-old Michelle Denton's throat was cut by her boyfriend; an unidentified man's body was found in Cherry Hill (it appears he was killed on Friday or Saturday, but his death will go on the record for 2006); and another unidentified man was shot and killed in Southwest Baltimore. It took four days for Baltimore City to reach four homicide victims last year.

The article above also mentions murder #269 for 2005: an unidentified taxi driver was fatally stabbed by two teenagers in West Baltimore on New Year's Eve.

It seems like the "Baltimore's Murder Rate Dropped!" articles are already starting to appear. I understand that nine less deaths is a big deal, but from the little I know of statistics, a 3% movement in either direction can be considered more of a statistical anomaly than a true change.

A 20-year-old man in Howard County killed his father, who was attacking the man's mother. The Sun's article briefly looks into gender issues in Chinese culture.

In Calvert County, 40-year-old Lisa Moore was shot to death by her 57-year-old ex-boyfriend, Graham Buckmaster. A protective order was in place, but Moore's family claim's police officers didn't enforce it since Buckmaster's family is prominent in Calvert County.

26-year-old Gerald Reed has been arrested for the attempted murder of 25-year-old Mathaddues Rozier and for the murder of Rozier's 79-year-old father.

New Year's day robbers in Harford County held about 50 attendees of a church service at gunpoint and stole their cash and valuables.

Councilwoman Mary Pat Clarke is pushing for legislation that will allow police to close corner convenience stores in drug-infested neighborhoods for up to six hours each day. Dealing is usually heavy around the local stores, and the six-hour timeslot would be determined by when dealers are busiest in a neighborhood.

Two shootings and a whole lot of robbery in the Police Blotter.

An interesting article in the Sun about Maryland U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein and what his office is doing to combat crime in Baltimore.