- The Washington Times - Monday, July 28, 2008

REGION

Thunderstorms cause outages, injuries

Thunderstorms Sunday brought strong gusts, lightning and rain across the region, causing power outages and injuries at outdoor activities.

A National Weather Service spotter reported penny-sized hail at Fort Meade, Md.

Pepco and Dominion Power had thousands of customers without power in the afternoon.

At a festival at Fairview Beach, on the Potomac River, boats were hit by four-foot waves as storms moved through. Crews from the Coast Guard and Charles and Prince George’s counties rescued several people from the water.

Fairfax County officials say three people had minor injuries after a tent they were under collapsed at Bull Run Regional Park, in Centreville.

Authorities say lightning struck a chimney at a house in Fairfax Station, causing part of the chimney to fall on a gas meter, which started a minor leak.

MARYLAND

LINTHICUM

Smoke forces plane back to BWI

Smoke in the cockpit of a Southwest Airlines flight Sunday forced the plane to return to Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport shortly after takeoff, an airline spokeswoman said.

The spokeswoman said the problem was the result of a faulty cockpit fan, which has been changed, and that the flight was schedule to depart again for Norfolk later Sunday afternoon.

Southwest Flight 121 departed at 2:43 p.m. and landed at 2:50 p.m., said an airport spokeswoman. Officials said they did not know whether the smoke was visible in the passenger cabin.

BURTONSVILLE

Pedestrian struck, killed by SUV

A 25-year-old man was killed after being struck Sunday morning by a sports utility vehicle, according to the Montgomery County Police Department.

Police say the accident occurred at 1:30 a.m. and have identified the victim as Juan Camilo Martinez, of Regal Park, N.Y. They say Mr. Martinez, age unknown, was walking along westbound Spencerville Road when he was hit by the vehicle, which was also traveling westbound. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver of the SUV, Edward Cornett, 47, of Rockville, remained at the scene. Officials say an autopsy is planned to determine the cause of Mr. Martinez’s death.

UPPER MARLBORO

Man found fatally shot

The Prince George’s County Police Department is investigating the shooting death of an unidentified male on Markham Lane.

Police say the shooting occurred at about 10 p.m. Saturday and that officers arrived to find the victim with multiple gunshot wounds to his upper body.

The man was pronounced dead at the scene. Authorities are working to identify the man and are asking for any tips in the case.

VIRGINIA

FAIRFAX

Suspect arrested in rental scam

The Fairfax County Police Department have identified a man they have arrested in connection with the scamming of prospective renters.

They have identified the suspect as Richard Hiner, 31, of Catlett, Va., and say he advertised rental homes on Craigslist. After giving potential tenants tours of properties, Mr. Hiner is said to have had them sign a rental contract and provide payment toward the rent.

Police say the victims later learned Mr. Hiner was not affiliated with the properties, which were owned by banks and in foreclosure.

Police say four such incidents occurred from July 13 to July 18.

Detectives posing as potential renters responded to an online listing for a rental home, and arrested Mr. Hiner when he arrived for their appointment Thursday.

Mr. Hiner was charged with four counts of grand larceny by false pretense and three counts of burglary.

From staff reports and wire dispatches

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