- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 22, 2006



Starving girl foundchained to bed

A teenage girl was rescued after being imprisoned without food or water for nearly three full days.

Police freed Kenya Lincoln, 15, on Monday after she shouted from a bedroom window for help and a neighbor, Dion Gram, 10, heard her screams and called 911.

Officers broke through a locked bedroom door in the 3000 block of Beecher Avenue in Northwest Baltimore and found the partially clothed teen chained by the ankle to a bed with no mattress.

The girl’s mother, Tia Whitehead, and her mother’s boyfriend, Samuel D. Pound, 30, were arrested and are being held without bail.

Mr. Pound was charged with child abuse, unlawful detention of a juvenile and reckless endangerment.

Miss Whitehead was charged with second-degree child abuse, false imprisonment, second-degree assault and reckless endangerment.

Kenya told officers that she had been chained to the bed by Mr. Pound since Friday. She was unchained at times by her mother to empty a child’s training toilet in the room, according to court records.

Police said the girl had bruises on her thighs and arm. She was taken to John Hopkins Hospital and treated.

Mr. Pound and Miss Whitehead later surrendered to police at a nearby precinct.

Kenya and her brother, Juwan Whitehead, are now in foster care.


Vandal orderedto clean up graffiti

One of Baltimore’s most prolific graffiti vandals has been ordered to help rid the city of the creations left by him and others.

Kenneth Ellis, 25, was sentenced Tuesday to 500 hours of community service and 18 months of probation after his guilty plea for malicious destruction of property.

Mr. Ellis is better known by his black-and-silver graffiti tag “Oricl,” which has been spray-painted on buildings and light poles across the city. In court, he said he wanted to tell the city he was sorry.

The city’s Department of Public Works will supervise Mr. Ellis’ community service.


Police: Motorist fired shots at car on I-70

A motorist who acknowledged emptying his handgun on a car that wouldn’t let him pass on Interstate 70 told a judge that it was road rage “but it wasn’t all my fault.”

Jimmie Lee Johnson, 35, of Baltimore, remained in the Washington County jail yesterday, one day after his bail was set at $400,000.

“What happened yesterday was road rage, but it wasn’t all my fault. I really was defending myself,” Johnson said at his bail hearing Tuesday in Washington County District Court. “I am glad — truly glad — that no one was hurt. I really wish this wouldn’t have happened.”

Neither the 19-year-old driver from Derwood nor his female passenger in the targeted Chrysler PT Cruiser was hurt Monday afternoon, police said. The car appeared to have been hit twice in the side and once on a wheel, Maryland State Police Cpl. Mike Fluharty said.

Johnson told police that he fired the 9 mm pistol “until the gun stopped firing.”

According to charging documents, Johnson had been following the PT Cruiser driven by Kyle Hitchcock very closely in the left-hand passing lane before moving to the right lane. As Johnson passed Mr. Hitchcock, he fired at the car, police said.

Mr. Hitchcock pulled his damaged car into the median, and Johnson continued east for 13 miles before police stopped him.

Johnson was charged with attempted second-degree murder, having a handgun in a vehicle and possession of marijuana, among other charges.

Assistant State’s Attorney Arthur Rozes said Johnson has past convictions for assault with a deadly weapon in Maryland and robbery in California.



Amber Alerts availableas text messages

Aides to Gov. Timothy M. Kaine got hold of his personal cell phone yesterday and signed him up to receive Amber Alert text messages.

Mr. Kaine, Delegate Stephen C. Shannon and football Hall of Famer and former congressman Steve Largent asked others to sign their mobile phones up for the instant-notification service.

Amber Alerts broadcast information about children shortly after they are reported missing.

Since its creation 10 years ago after the abduction of 9-year-old Amber Hagerman near Dallas, the program that bears her name has been credited with finding 260 missing or abducted children and reuniting them with their families, said Mr. Shannon, Fairfax Democrat.

To sign up, go to www.wirelessamberalerts.com.

Mr. Largent said the text messages provide names, descriptions and other information about missing children. Eventually, photos of the children and perhaps the abduction suspects will be available.


Laser pointerbeamed at airplane

Federal agents are trying to determine who is responsible for aiming a laser pointer at a commercial jetliner as it approached Washington Dulles International Airport on Tuesday night.

The incident occurred about 8:45 p.m., as United Flight 1502 approached the runway at the conclusion of a flight from Orlando, Fla. The plane was less than two miles from the runway when the pilot and flight crew saw the image of the red laser beam projected inside the cockpit of the Airbus 320.

The crew also saw a man in the woods of one of the greenbelts surrounding the airport grounds. The probe has been turned over to the FBI.

Similar incidents were reported at Dulles and near Baltimore-Washington International Airport in 2004.


Officials challengecensus findings

Officials are challenging a Census Bureau finding that said the county lost 1,990 residents — 1 percent of its total population — from 2004 to 2005.

The county’s estimate, based on occupancy data, said the population increased, but it is still finalizing its data.

This is the second consecutive year that the county has challenged a Census Bureau estimate that the county’s population is in decline. Last year, the county successfully challenged the July 2004 population estimate.

Officials said the discrepancy between county and federal estimates stems from a difference in methods. The Census Bureau relies heavily on migration, birth and death data, while the county’s population estimates are based on new housing construction and occupancy rates.


Program approvedto protect wilderness

Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns has approved petitions to develop regulations protecting national forests in Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

The regulations will protect roadless, wild areas from development.

Mr. Johanns said yesterday that the department is committed to working to meet the needs of communities while protecting national forests.

Former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner had asked federal officials to restrict road construction and commercial activity on more than 380,000 acres of mountain wilderness in Virginia.

The action has the support of Virginia Gov. Timothy M. Kaine, who praised Mr. Johanns’ decision.

The Bush administration last year repealed a 2001 regulation that prohibited most development of wilderness areas nationwide. Instead, the administration implemented a process requiring individual states to petition for the amount of protection desired.


Biologist sees no dipin snakehead numbers

A biologist with the State Department of Game and Inland Fisheries said there is no drop-off in snakehead fish in the Potomac River.

Fisheries biologist John Odenkirk said the river went from having 20 of the fish in 2004 to 300 last year.

Although there are no numbers this year, he said he expects the population will be even higher.

But Mr. Odenkirk said there has been no effect yet on other fish populations in the Potomac. He said snakeheads still do not come close to the numbers of other fish in the ecosystem.

The department has put transmitters on 20 snakeheads and is tracking them to see where they are spawning.

The big question, Mr. Odenkirk said, is what will happen in 10 years? Nobody knows whether the numbers will increase or fall off because nothing like this has happened to date in a big, open system, he said.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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