Crimes Of The Week
Alleged Burglar Has Foggy Memory
OCEAN CITY - A Pennsylvania man was arrested on first-degree burglary and other charges last week after allegedly stealing two book bags from two different residences in the Judlee Ave. area, although he apparently had no recollection of the thefts.
Last Tuesday, an Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officer was flagged down by a cab driver, who told the officer to keep an eye on a suspicious individual walking around the area. The cabbie told police the suspect, later identified as Joseph Samuel Lakata, 20, of Weatherly, Pa., had walked by once with nothing in his hands and walked by a second time with two book bags in his hands. The cab driver told police Lakata had walked by his residence at least five times.
The officer detained Lakata and asked him what he was doing in the area. Lakata told police he had met a girl on the Boardwalk and was supposed to meet her at a residence on Judlee Ave. but she had stood him up and he decided to walk back to his motel room nearby. When the officer asked Lakata about the book bags, he told police he had found them on the ground nearby and had taken them back to his motel room.
Based on the information provided by the suspect, police went to Lakata's motel room and found the two book bags described by the victims. The two bags contained various items of clothing and shoes. Also found in one of the bags was a Bob Marley banner that had been hanging in the residence of one of the victims.
Lakata initially stuck to his story about finding the bags on the street, but when police interviewed the victims, they each told different stories. One victim told police he had come home from work earlier, tossed his bag behind a couch and met his roommates on an outside deck and had no idea Lakata had allegedly come into the house and taken his property.
Another victim at a different residence said he was sleeping on a couch and woke up to find someone had entered the house, but when he called out to him, the suspect turned and left. The victim told police the suspect had a book bag on his back when he left, but didn't know it was his at the time. By the time he went to the door, the suspect, presumably Lakata, had disappeared.
Lakata was arrested on suspicion of theft and burglary and asked the officer he was in trouble. When the officer asked him if he had done anything to get into trouble, Lakata allegedly said, 'yeah, I stole those bags and I should be in a lot of trouble.'
When asked if entered the units in question, Lakata allegedly told police 'it was absolutely possible,' but he did not remember going into the residences. Lakata told police he tends to be very forgetful, especially when he drinks. He said he did remember stealing the bags, but he didn't remember going into either of the residences. He was charged with two counts of first-degree burglary, two counts each of third- and fourth-degree burglary and theft.
Drunk, Naked And Disorderly
WEST OCEAN CITY - An Annapolis woman was arrested for disorderly conduct last week at a West Ocean City motel after allegedly throwing the furniture out of the room and the standing in the doorway naked while yelling.
A little after 3 a.m. last Thursday, Maryland State Police troopers responded to the Francis Scott Key Motel in West Ocean City for a reported disturbance. Upon arrival, the troopers learned the suspect, later identified as Kelley Maureen Queen, 45, of Annapolis, had thrown all of the furniture from her motel room out into the hallway. Queen was then observed standing in the doorway of her room naked and yelling in full view of several motel guests. She was subsequently arrested for disorderly conduct. According to police reports, the suspect was under the influence of alcohol.
•€˜Moron' Pulls Fire Alarm
OCEAN CITY - A Pennsylvania man was arrested this week for pulling a fire alarm at a mid-town condominium building in an effort to find out where his friends were staying.
Shortly before 4 a.m. last Saturday, OCPD officers were dispatched to the San Remo condominium on 54th Street for a reported disorderly subject. The complainant told police an unknown male subject was banging on her door and harassing her. While en route, the OCPD officers received a call that the fire alarm for the condo building had been activated.
As the officers approached, they saw a man, later identified as Rashawn A. Parrish, 29, of Levittown, Pa., running from the San Remo parking garage. Meanwhile, the OCPD officers received a description of the suspect who was allegedly banging on a door earlier and the description matched that of Parrish. The witness told police she believed the same suspect who had been knocking on her door had pulled the fire alarm for the building.
The officers located Parrish nearby and questioned him about the incident. They asked Parrish if he had just come from the San Remo and he said that he had, but when they asked him if he had been banging on doors, he said no. When asked a second time if he could have accidentally banged on the wrong door, he admitted that he had.
Finally, the officers asked Parrish if he had pulled the fire alarm and he admitted doing it. When asked why he would pull the alarm when there was clearly no fire or emergency, Parrish told police he could not find his friends and he believed if he pulled the fire alarm, they would come out of their respective room. Parrish then apologized and said, 'I am a moron.'
Arrested For Slapping Horse
OCEAN CITY - A seasonal Ocean City resident was arrested this week after allegedly slapping an OCPD police horse working crowd control at closing time at a downtown underage nightclub.
Around 2 a.m. on Monday, an OCPD mounted officer was riding police horse Roy in front of the H2O2 club on Worcester Street while assisting with crowd control at closing time during a special late night event for international students. As the officer was riding Roy through the crowd in front of the club, he heard a slapping sound and immediately felt the horse lunge forward.
When the officer looked in the direction of the slapping sound, he saw an individual later identified as Ivan Bloshko, 19, of Ocean City, walking west on Worcester Street. Another OCPD officer in the area told the mounted officer he had observed Bloshko intentionally slap Roy hard on the right buttock.
The mounted officer advised the second officer to arrest Bloshko for striking a police animal. The officer noted in his report Bloshko's actions could have resulted in either the officer or someone in the crowd being seriously injured or even killed if the police horse had taken off running after being slapped in such a manner
Dazed And Combative
OCEAN CITY - A Glen Burnie woman was arrested on assault charges last week after allegedly kicking the OCPD officer trying to help her find her way home.
Around 4 a.m. last Wednesday, OCPD officers were dispatched to the beach at 94th Street for an assist citizen call and met with a man who told them he had met a woman at a bar earlier in the evening and was trying to get her home, but could not figure out where she lived because she was so intoxicated. The man pointed to a path that runs along the dune line and told the officers the intoxicated woman was down in that area.
The officers found the woman, identified as Lynda B. Bell, 36, of Glen Burnie, lying in the sand with her pants around her thighs. According to police reports, it appeared Bell had attempted to relieve herself, but ended up urinating on her pants. The officers asked her to stand up, but she was unstable and the officers had to assist her.
According to police reports, Bell tried to walk but twice fell back onto the sand. At that point, fearing for Bell's safety and their own, the officers told the suspect to just sit down on the sand. When she refused, the officers cuffed her and began to ask her questions about where she was staying and with whom she was staying, but Bell's speech was slurred and difficult to understand.
When the officers asked Bell a question, she would not give the same answer two times in a row. For example, when they asked her age the first time, she told them she was 17. When they asked her age a second time, she said she was 35. Finally, when they asked her age a third time, she said she was 12.
According to police reports, gaining the most basic information from Bell was difficult. For example, when they asked her name, she gave at least five different names. Finally, the officers were able to ascertain her identity using bits and pieces of what she told them and the information they got from the victim.
Meanwhile, Bell could not sit up on her own and one of the officers propped her up with a knee against her back. At one point, Bell yelled expletives at one of the officers and told him she hated him. After exhausting every attempt to help Bell find her way home, the officers arrested her for disorderly intoxication. While they were attempting to get Bell off the ground and into a transport vehicle, she allegedly kicked one of the officers in the thigh and a second-degree assault charge was tacked on.
DUI Stop Nets Drug Bust
BERLIN - A Willards man was arrested on drug possession charges and numerous traffic offenses after getting pulled over for drunk driving last week.
Around 11:40 p.m. last Wednesday, a Maryland State Police trooper patrolling in the area of Route 50 and Main Street near Berlin pulled over a vehicle for driving 80 mph in a 55 mph zone. The trooper activated his emergency lights in an attempt to pull over the vehicle, but it continued driving for about a mile and a half before finally stopping.
The trooper approached the vehicle and immediately detected the odor of an alcoholic beverage. The suspect, later identified as Frank Schmitt, 41, of Willards, was removed from the vehicle and placed under arrest for driving under the influence after refusing all tests.
The trooper then observed in plain view prescription medication that wasn't prescribed to Schmitt. The pills seized included Vicodan, Valium and Lyrica, all of which are considered controlled dangerous substances. Schmitt was then charged with DUI, possession of prescription medication without a valid prescription, attempting to flee and elude a police officer and related traffic charges.
Don't Destroy The Granite
OCEAN CITY - A Trappe, Md. man was arrested this week for allegedly assaulting an OCPD officer and interfering with resort firefighters attempting to put out a fire at a tiki bar adjacent to his residence.
Around 6:15 a.m. on Tuesday, OCPD officers responded to a reported house fire on Flounder Lane in Ocean City. When the officers arrived, they discovered firefighters were already on the scene. The firefighters had located the source of the fire, which was a tiki bar connected to the side of the modular home. There was heavy smoke emanating from the bar and firefighters were attempting to access an area behind a grill to extinguish the fire.
Around that time, a man later identified as Edward S. Moore, 37, of Trappe, Md., came out of the residence and walked over to the area where the firefighters were working. Moore was advised to stand back and did for a brief moment, but came directly back to the area a short time later and actually stepped on a fire hose, according to police reports.
Firefighters allegedly told Moore again to stand back and the OCPD officers also told him to stand back and get anyone inside out of the residence. Moore allegedly went back inside to wake the other occupants of the home and emerged a short time later with a woman and a child.
Meanwhile, the firefighters had begun to pull apart the bar in order to access the areas where the fire still needed to be extinguished. The woman who had earlier exited the residence told Moore the firefighters were going to ruin the granite, to which Moore allegedly responded 'Oh no they're not,' and began to push his way into the area where the firefighters were working.
Moore allegedly told police the firefighters did not have to destroy the granite and that he could help them, but the officers told Moore he needed to step back and let the firefighters do their job. Moore allegedly told police 'there is no fire' and 'they ain't going to destroy my granite.'
One of the officer put his arm up to hold Moore back and keep him from interfering with the firefighters, but Moore allegedly pushed the officer's arm down and pushed him backward. The officer grabbed more, but he continued to pull away until he was pushed against a fence and handcuffed. Moore was charged with assaulting an officer and interfering with firefighters.
Fine For Resisting
OCEAN CITY - A Salisbury man, one of four arrested in April on various charges during a fracas outside a downtown nightclub around closing time, pleaded guilty to resisting arrest this week in District Court and was fined $500.
Shortly before 2 a.m. on April 25, OCPD responded to the area outside the Paddock nightclub to handle a large crowd of allegedly intoxicated and disorderly individuals. An OCPD officer was called to assist another officer in the area, who was attempting to separate two groups of individuals. As the officer approached the scene, he observed an individual, later identified as Keith Cornelius Miles, 22, of Salisbury, with his shirt off and in an apparently agitated state.
A female in the group, identified as Elizabeth Whaley, was yelling at Miles, and Miles was yelling back at her. At some point, Miles grabbed Whaley by the face and shoved her hard enough that she had to take a big step backward to avoid falling and she then bent over at the waist, according to police reports.
The officer approached Miles and told him he was under arrest and ordered him to put his hands behind his back, which Miles refused. When told again, Miles allegedly tensed up and tried to pull away from the officer and reportedly said, 'I ain't doing [expletive deleted] for you.' According to police reports, Miles than ran toward the officer, who told him to get down on the ground. Miles continued to resist and the officer attempted an arm bar take down.
According to police reports, it was raining at the time and the ground was wet, causing the officer's feet to slip out from under him and he landed on his hip. Miles then turned toward the fallen officer and made another run at him while he was on the ground. According to police reports, the officer kicked Miles in the leg and pushed him back.
After a continued scuffle, another officer assisted the first officer and was able to restrain Miles, who was then handcuffed. Miles was arrested and charged with second-degree assault on the female and resisting arrest. This week in District Court, Miles pleaded guilty to resisting arrest and was fined $500.
Chop Shop Uncovered
BERLIN - Two Pocomoke men were arrested last week on motor vehicle theft charges after Worcester County Bureau of Investigation (WCBI) detectives uncovered a chop shop operation in the south end of the county.
Back on July 21, a red 2002 Peterbilt dump truck was reported stolen from Trotty Trucking on the eastern shore of Virginia and reward was offered for information about the stolen vehicle. Information was obtained that the stolen truck was located on the property of Johnny Lightning Welding in Pocomoke, owned and operated by John L. Parsons, 51.
The victim went to the welding company and was able to identify portions of his stolen vehicle that had been dismantled, or chopped, on the property. WCBI detectives, with the assistance of the Worcester County Sheriff's Office, conducted an investigation and obtained a search warrant for the property and parts of the dismantled stolen vehicle were positively identified.
For example, the dual rear tandem had been cut from the chassis, the hood and bumper had been removed and the cab was missing. In addition, a tractor portion of a tractor-trailer combo owned by Demetric Douglas, 34, of Pocomoke, was found on the property with the tires from the stolen dump truck mounted on it.
Through the investigation, it was learned the cab portion of the stolen dump truck had been dumped off the roadway near Bromley Rd. in Pocomoke. Detectives responded to the area and recovered the stolen cab of the dump truck. A check with neighbors in the area revealed the cab had been dumped by a silver Ford pick-up.
Parsons and Douglas have been charged with motor vehicle theft and theft over $10,000 but under $100,000. They were taken before a District Court Commissioner and released pending trial.