- The Washington Times - Saturday, June 6, 2009

DISTRICT

Police initiative this weekend

The Metropolitan Police Department is running a citywide All Hands on Deck initiative this weekend - the second of six times officials plan to implement the program this year.

The signature initiative of Chief Cathy L. Lanier began Friday morning and will be in effect until 6 a.m. Sunday. It places all available sworn police department personnel on patrol throughout the city. The first phase of the program this year in April resulted in 377 arrests, officials said.

This weekend’s All Hands on Deck will include Saturday events at Parkview Community Center in Northwest and Benning Stoddert Community Center in Southeast, where residents can learn about job training and get information about other services from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Police also requested volunteers for cleaning efforts at Florida Avenue Park in Northwest and in the 4300 to 4400 blocks of Livingston Place in Southeast.

MARYLAND

BROOKLYN PARK

70 charged in drug probe

Police said 70 people have been arrested after a drug investigation along the border between Anne Arundel County and Baltimore.

The joint investigation by Anne Arundel and Baltimore police was dubbed Operation Street Sweeper. It was launched in response to an uptick in drug dealing and prostitution in the Brooklyn and Brooklyn Park areas. Police said suspects were frequently moving between the city and the county to circumvent law enforcement.

The probe lasted from April 21 through May 22. Of the 70 arrests, police said 17 were on suspicion of felony crimes. Police also seized more than $130,000 worth of illegal drugs, including $100,000 worth of marijuana and $27,000 worth of cocaine.

PRINCE FREDERICK

Accused mom’s trial not moved

A judge has denied a motion to move the abuse trial of a woman accused of abusing one adopted daughter and killing two others whose bodies were found in her freezer.

Attorneys for Renee Bowman asked to move the abuse trial because of pretrial publicity. The motion was denied Friday in Calvert County Circuit Court.

Abuse allegations involving the surviving daughter prompted a probe that led investigators to find the bodies of the two girls in the suspect’s Calvert County home. She faces murder and child abuse charges for the deaths of the two girls in Montgomery County, where prosecutors think the abuse and deaths occurred.

CRUMPTON

Woman found dead on rural road

A man commandeered a couple’s car at a gas station in New Jersey early Friday and forced them to drive to rural Maryland before fatally stabbing the woman to death and wounding the man, police said.

Police had not identified the Lexington Park woman found dead around 6 a.m. with knife wounds to her upper body because they had not been able to notify her family. Her body was found in a field beside Route 290, a sparsely populated Eastern Shore road near Crumpton where houses sit a quarter-mile apart.

The St. Mary’s County man in his 20s told police he and his wife, also in her 20s, left their home in Brooklyn, N.Y., around 9 p.m. Thursday to drive to Maryland. Police said the couple had homes in both states. The couple stopped on the New Jersey Turnpike to buy gas, the husband said, when an armed man forced them into their car.

Police said the husband told officers he was forced to drive to the Crumpton area in Kent County, where the assailant forced him out of the car and bound his hands and feet on Route 290, four miles north of Route 301.

The husband told police his wife tried to escape, but the man ran her down and killed her, police said.

The husband said the man, armed with a knife and gun, drove away around 1:30 a.m. in the couple’s blue Honda Accord with Virginia registration 876-718 or KDZ-1408.

The husband, who was wounded when police arrived, told officers he freed himself after several hours, unsuccessfully tried to flag down motorists for help and eventually called 911 about 6 a.m. from a nearby home.

Police found his wife’s body a few minutes’ walk away from that house.

The husband was treated and released from Chester River Hospital Center in Chestertown for cuts on his arm and a cracked rib. An autopsy will be performed on the woman’s body.

PERRYVILLE

Town approves casino zoning

The Perryville Board of Commissioners has approved a zoning change allowing a Pennsylvania-based gambling company to build a slots casino on the northern edge of town near Interstate 95.

Penn National Gaming has been considering two locations, one in Perryville and one just outside town limits. If the slots parlor is in town, Perryville can share in the revenue generated by the casino.

State officials already have designated Cecil County as one of the prospective sites for a casino.

Mayor Jim Eberhardt said the board changed the zoning from commercial to commercial entertainment mixed-use development. He said the Hollywood Casino Perryville, which is expected to cost $75 million, could open as early as October 2010.

BRANDYWINE

Body found near driveway

Prince George’s County police are investigating the circumstances of finding a body found near a residential driveway in Brandywine.

Cpl. Mike Rodriguez said a resident called Friday to report that he saw body parts near his driveway. Officers who responded found the body.

Cpl. Rodriguez said the investigation conntinues and no other details are available.

VIRGINIA

RICHMOND

Gas prices up 61 percent this year

AAA Mid-Atlantic said the average price of a gallon of regular gas in Virginia has jumped by 61 percent since Jan. 1.

The organization said the average per-gallon cost on Friday was $2.44, compared with $1.52 on Jan. 1.

AAA Mid-Atlantic spokeswoman Martha Mitchell Meade said gas prices in the state are at their highest level since late October.

Roanoke saw a 65 percent increase in gas prices, from $1.46 to $2.41. The per-gallon cost in the Norfolk area rose from $1.46 to $2.40, a 64 percent increase. In Richmond, gas prices jumped from $1.50 to $2.43, a 62 percent increase.

RICHMOND

Kaine names technology secretary

Gov. Tim Kaine, a Democrat, has appointed a technology consultant with nearly four decades of engineering and computer experience as his new secretary of technology.

Leonard Pomata succeeds Aneesh Chopra, who left last month after President Obama picked him as the nation’s first chief technology officer.

Mr. Pomata has worked the past two years as an information technology consultant. Before that, he was a top executive at Digicon and software giant Oracle.

He served for two years on the Governor’s Commission on Information Technology and State Security and Preparedness under former Gov. Jim Gilmore, a Republican.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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