- The Washington Times - Wednesday, December 20, 2006

MARYLAND

BALTIMORE

Woman with ties to new mayor indicted

A grand jury yesterday indicted the owner of a company in a case with connections to Baltimore’s incoming mayor, who quickly issued a statement saying none of the charges in the indictment has “anything to do with the City Council or myself.”

Mildred Boyer, who owns Union Technologies, has been charged in a 10-count indictment, including six counts of making and issuing false and counterfeit invoices with the intent to defraud Atlanta-based Action Capital Corp., the state prosecutor’s office said.

Miss Boyer also has been charged with one count of theft of $193,736 from Action Capital.

Soon after the indictment was announced yesterday afternoon, City Council President Sheila Dixon, who will become mayor next month when Martin O’Malley officially becomes governor, said, “After reviewing the court papers, it appears that none of the allegations in the indictment have anything to do with the City Council or myself. At this time, I maintain that it would be inappropriate for me to comment further on the investigation or the pending charges against Ms. Boyer.”

The indictment says Miss Boyer fabricated a letter on Baltimore city government stationery. The letter was intended to show that Miss Boyer’s company, which is also known as Utech, had been awarded a city contract.

Miss Boyer has been charged with one count of submitting false loan application docu-ments to obtain a car loan. She also has been charged with two counts of filing false Maryland tax returns for 2003 and 2004.

State investigators have been looking into Mrs. Dixon’s in-volvement with city money that went to companies employing her sister and her former campaign chairman. Mrs. Dixon has said she hasn’t done anything improper and has cooperated with investigators.

BALTIMORE

Wounded trooper released from hospital

A trooper critically wounded during an arrest in Baltimore County a week ago was discharged from the hospital late yesterday afternoon, state police said.

Trooper 1st Class Eric D. Workman, 36, had been at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center since he was wounded in a shootout in Woodlawn seven days earlier.

Trooper Workman was shot as he and several members of an allied police task force tried to serve an arrest warrant on a man wanted in an armed robbery and kidnapping in Carroll County. The suspect, Steven T. Jones, 38, was killed.

ANNAPOLIS

Lawmakers suggest smaller increases

State spending next year should grow, but not as much as last year, a committee of lawmakers and fiscal specialists decided yesterday in their annual advice to the governor on how much the government should spend.

The committee suggested state spending in the fiscal year that starts July 1 should grow by about 7.9 percent, or $1.45 billion. That’s a slower growth rate than they recommended last year — when they suggested 9.6 percent — but still the growth would put Maryland’s budget at more than $19.8 billion.

The spending suggestion will be sent to Gov.-elect Martin O’Malley, a Democrat who takes office next month amid warnings that state finances are headed for trouble. Last month, the legislature’s fiscal advisers said Maryland must make changes to avoid a roughly $5.8 billion gap between revenues and expenditures over the next four years.

Much of the shortfall, lawmakers say, would be caused by school improvements mandated by law and a bigger tab for health care.

BEL AIR

Trooper hurt in fire while rescuing cows

An off-duty state trooper was injured yesterday morning when he stopped at a barn fire, the state fire marshal’s office said.

The trooper was driving by Broom’s Bloom Dairy, in the 1600 block of South Fountain Green Road, shortly before 10:30 a.m. when he saw the fire, Deputy Fire Marshal Faron Taylor said. The trooper was injured when he tried to help get the cows out of the barn.

Marshal Taylor said the trooper was knocked unconscious and sustained a leg and shoulder injury. He was flown to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore. His name was not released.

The fire killed up to half of the herd of 57 animals.

Fire investigators did not know the cause of the fire, which was brought under control in about 45 minutes.

VIRGINIA

RICHMOND

Man indicted in bomb mailing

A man who federal authorities say mailed a package containing an explosive device was charged Monday with trying to kill court employees, prosecutors said.

Rodney Curtis Hamrick, 41, was indicted on seven counts related to the October 2005 mailings to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, U.S. Attorney Chuck Rosenberg said.

A second mailing included a powdery substance labeled “Anthrax.”

Tests determined the substance was not anthrax.

Mr. Rosenberg said Mr. Hamrick attempted to kill the court’s clerk, assistant clerks and officers when he mailed a package with the explosive.

DAMASCUS

Burning meth lab forces evacuations

At least 60 elderly and disabled persons were evacuated from their apart-ments after a meth lab emitting noxious fumes set off sprinklers in their three-story building Monday night, police said.

David Allen Riley, 43, of the Glade Spring area of Washington County, was in jail on numerous charges, including manufacturing methamphet-amine and drug possession, Damascus Police Chief Tony Richardson said yesterday.

Police were seeking the occupant of the third-floor apartment where the lab was found.

The building was soaked at 5:35 p.m. after drugs being cooked reached such a high temperature they set off smoke alarms and sprinklers, Chief Richardson said.

Residents of the government-subsidized complex were quickly evacuated, and no one was injured.

A body was found in one apartment, but Chief Richard-son said the death appeared to be from natural causes.

Chief Richardson said residents might not be able to return home for weeks.

LORTON

Search ended for missing boater

After a day of searching the Potomac River, rescuers had not found the boater missing since his speedboat flipped on the Potomac River near Gunston Cove on Monday.

Investigators said the boater may have been racing another vessel in an area of the river where there is no speed limit.

Searchers looked for several hours Monday night and then returned to the water yesterday morning.

The man’s name has not been released, but he reportedly is an experienced boater who has spent hundreds of hours on the Potomac each year.

The search focused in the Gunston Cove area. The man set out from Pohick Bay Regional Park and had been on the water for about an hour before he was reported missing about 5:30 p.m. Monday.

REGION

Bush signs bill creating Bay trail

Legislation was signed into law yesterday to create a historic water trail tracing Capt. John Smith’s route around the Chesapeake Bay.

In 1607, Smith left England for Virginia with three ships that would spend the next two years studying the environment, local watermen and American Indians living there at the time.

The trail will include interpretative materials and talking buoys, which provide scientific information and guide travelers. The buoys will educate visitors about the Bay’s health with up-to-the-minute information via the Internet or cell phones.

U.S. Rep. Jo Ann Davis and Sens. John W. Warner of Virginia and Paul S. Sarbanes of Maryland sponsored the bill.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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