Vehicle Overturns On Route 50
BERLIN -- Westbound Route 50 was closed for about an hour early Monday morning after a two-car crash resulted in an overturned vehicle at the intersection with Route 589.
Around 6:30 a.m. on Monday, Maryland State Police troopers responded to a reported motor vehicle accident at the intersection of Routes 50 and 589. The investigation revealed a vehicle driven by Dontae Lamar Sturgis of Frankford, Del., was traveling south on Route 589 when it ran through a red light at Route 50 and collided with another vehicle heading west on Route 50 driven by Benjamin Davis of Ocean City.
The collision caused Davis’ vehicle to overturn in the intersection. Neither Davis nor Sturgis were injured in the collision. Sturgis was charged with failure to stop at a steady red circular signal. Westbound Route 50 was closed for about an hour while the investigation was ongoing and the vehicles were cleared from the intersection.
No Seat Belts Leads To Pot
BERLIN -- A Massachusetts man was arrested on marijuana possession charges this week after a routine traffic stop on Route 50.
Shortly before 4 p.m. on Monday, a Maryland State Police trooper monitoring traffic flow along Route 50 in the area of Wal-Mart observed a truck traveling eastbound with its driver, later identified as David Cappabianca, 21, of Springfield, Mass. and the front-seat passenger without their seatbelts on. The trooper stopped the vehicle and detected the odor of marijuana coming from the passenger compartment.
Cappabianca and the passenger were asked to exit the vehicle while a probable cause search was conducted. The search turned up 6.2 grams of marijuana along with a glass smoking device. Cappabianca and the passenger were arrested and charged with possession of marijuana and possession of paraphernalia. Each was later released after an appearance before a District Court Commissioner.
18 Months For Grabbing Cop’s Gun
OCEAN CITY -- An Ocean City man, arrested on numerous charges last September after allegedly first shoplifting from a north-end grocery store and later attempting to disarm the OCPD officer trying to detain him, pleaded guilty last week to second-degree assault and was sentenced to 18 months in jail.
Around 11 p.m. on Sept. 27, 2011, an OCPD officer on foot patrol in the area of 118th Street observed a suspicious man later identified as Ousmane Boubou Idrissa, 42, of Ocean City, exiting the Food Lion grocery store with what appeared to be a bulge under the waistband and front right pocket of his clothing. The officer further observed Idrissa was not carrying any grocery bags.
The officer approached Idrissa and asked what he was concealing under his clothing. According to police reports, Idrissa denied hiding anything under his clothes and attempted to flee the area. The officer pursued Idrissa and a struggle ensued, during which the suspect grabbed the officer’s holstered firearm at least twice. The officer was able to keep Idrissa from removing the weapon and was eventually able to subdue the suspect after a struggle until other officers arrived.
Idrissa was injured during the struggle and was treated at the scene by Ocean City paramedics. He was found in possession of items stolen from the Food Lion. Idrissa was arrested and charged with second-degree assault, attempting to disarm a law enforcement officer, which is a felony, resisting arrest and theft. Last week in Circuit Court, Idrissa pleaded guilty to second-degree assault and was sentenced to 18 months in jail. He was also fined $500.
Three Months For Knife Assault
SNOW HILL -- A North Carolina man, arrested on first-degree assault and other charges last September after holding a knife to another man’s throat during an altercation at an uptown nightclub, pleaded guilty last week to second-degree assault and was sentenced to three years in jail, most of which was suspended.
Shortly before midnight on Sept. 27, Ocean City Police responded to the Skyline Bar and Grill on the eighth floor of the Fenwick Inn for a reported assault that had just occurred. Hotel staff directed the officers to the victim, a local man, who told police he had been assaulted with a knife less than half an hour before their arrival.
The victim told police he was smoking a cigarette on the bar’s outside deck when he was approached by the suspect, later identified as Robert L. Fisher, 51, of Roanoke Rapids, N.C. The victim said Fisher stood in front of him and produced a small folding knife and pressed the knife against the victim’s throat. According to police reports, Fisher told the victim he was “insane” and that he was “going to kill a mother [expletive deleted].”
The victim told police Fisher moved the knife up and down the side of his throat for several seconds, essentially shaving the victim’s neck. In fact, the victim told police Fisher even made a reference to the smoothness of his neck on the shaven side as opposed to the non-shaven side. The victim also told police “I was scared to death.”
Investigators spoke to another witness who told police he observed Fisher hold the knife to the victim’s throat for as long as a minute. The witness told police Fisher had been in a verbal altercation with another man in the bar and Fisher and the victim were discussing the altercation outside when Fisher produced the knife. The witness also identified the suspect as Fisher, with whom he had a discussion earlier in the day about a possible job.
Police were able to determine Fisher was staying at the hotel and went to the room where he was registered. After being invited in by a female occupant, police observed a man matching Fisher’s description sleeping on one of the beds. An orange polo shirt described by the victim and the witness was lying on the floor beside the bed.
The officers took control of Fisher’s arms and the suspect did not resist. When the officers took Fisher into custody, they observed a silver folding knife clipped to his right front pocket. Police walked the victim past the hotel room and the victim was able to identify Fisher as his attacker and also identified the knife. Fisher was arrested and charged with first- and second-degree assault and reckless endangerment.
Last week, Fisher pleaded guilty to second-degree assault and was sentenced to three years in jail. All but three months of the sentence was suspended and Fisher was placed on probation for three years and fined $500.
Suspended Sentence For
Boardwalk Bathroom Assault
SNOW HILL -- An Ocean City T-shirt shop employee, arrested last July on sex offense and false imprisonment charges after assaulting a female customer in a locked bathroom, entered Alford pleas last week and was sentenced to eight months in jail, all of which was suspended.
Last July 7, Ocean City Police received a complaint regarding a possible sexual assault that had occurred in a bathroom at the OC Piercings store on the Boardwalk at 6th Street. The adult female victim contacted police and reported the employee, identified as Faud Abdo-Saleh Mansour, 24, of Ocean City, lured her to a bathroom to try on clothing.
Once in the bathroom, Mansour allegedly locked the door and began to undress and sexually assault the victim. The victim then left the shop and reported the incident to police. The investigation identified Mansour as the suspect and police obtained a warrant for the suspect, charging him with a third- and fourth-degree sex offense, second-degree assault and false imprisonment.
Last week, Mansour entered Alford pleas to a fourth-degree sex offense and false imprisonment. In an Alford plea, a defendant does not admit guilt, but acknowledges the state has enough evidence to prosecute. Mansour was sentenced to eight months in jail for each offense, all of which was suspended. He was also placed on probation for two years and fined a combined $500.
Off-Duty Cop Sentenced
SNOW HILL -- An off-duty Prince George’s County sheriff’s deputy, who pleaded guilty to second-degree assault in January after producing her badge and pointing a gun at the head of another victim during an altercation in downtown Ocean City last August was sentenced last week to one year in jail with all but 15 days suspended.
Around 3:12 a.m. last Aug. 14, police responded to the area of 2nd Street and Baltimore Ave. for a reported assault involving a handgun. OCPD officers met with a female victim and numerous witnesses. The victim told police she and another female acquaintance, identified as Jennifer Nicole Douglas, 26, of Fort Washington, Md., had gotten into an argument over keys to vehicle that had escalated into a physical altercation.
During the altercation, Douglas allegedly produced a star-shaped badge and a handgun, which she pointed at the victim’s head, according to police reports. Douglas left the scene in a vehicle and was later located by OCPD officers in the area of 42nd Street.
At the time of the stop, Douglas identified herself as a Prince George’s County Sheriff’s deputy. During a search, police recovered a .40 caliber Glock handgun. Douglas was arrested and charged with first- and second-degree assault and reckless endangerment. In January, Douglas pleaded guilty to second-degree assault and a pre-sentence investigation was ordered. Back in court last week, Douglas was sentenced to a year in jail, all but 15 days of which was suspended.
Guilty In Salvia Sale
OCEAN CITY -- A Boardwalk store employee charged with distribution of a synthetic drug banned by the town of Ocean City after a raid on the establishment last September was found guilty of distribution this week in District Court and was placed on probation and fined.
Ocean City police in September charged Fransisco Rico Hernandez, 48, of West Ocean City, and Blen Giday Berhani, 24, also of West Ocean City, with the possession and distribution of substances banned by the town of Ocean City. Fransisco owns the Maytalk store raided by masked undercover Ocean City narcotics officers and uniformed officers last Sept. 15, and Berhani is an employee of the raided store near 2nd Street.
Hernandez was charged with possession of Salvia, a hallucinogenic substance banned by the Ocean City Mayor and Council during the summer of 2010, and the possession and distribution of a cannabimimetic agent, K-2, a synthetic form of marijuana which gained popularity this summer before being banned by the Mayor and Council. Hernandez pleaded guilty in October and was placed on probation and fined.
Berhani, who faced the same charges, minus the possession of salvia count, appeared in District Court on Monday and pleaded not guilty to the charges. However, he was found guilty and was placed on probation for one year and fined $300.
The investigation began when OCPD Mounted Patrol officers received a tip from a citizen about the sale of K-2 at Maytalk in mid-September. On Sept. 13, undercover OCPD narcotics detectives conducted a compliance check on Maytalk and were able to purchase K-2 from Berhani, who allegedly told the undercover officers K-2 was illegal but agreed to sell it to them anyway. According to police reports, the employee also sold the detectives a pipe and explained to them how to use K-2 to get high. Also according to police reports, Hernandez was present during the transaction and the drug use seminar.
Two days later, around 1 p.m., undercover OCPD detectives wearing black hoods and masks over their faces, along with regular OCPD bicycle patrol officers, served a search and seizure warrant on the Maytalk store and recovered K-2, bath salts, paraphernalia, several fixed-blade fighting knives and Salvia. The owner admitted the store had been selling Salvia despite the ordinance banning the substance last year.