- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 27, 2006

MARYLAND

BALTIMORE

Teen held in rape of 4-year-old cousin

A teenage boy accused of raping and beating his 4-year-old cousin who later died appeared in court yesterday.

Police planned to increase charges against Ronald Hinton, 15, after the girl died Friday.

Police said the youth, who was baby-sitting the girl and her 7-year-old brother, called 911 and said the girl fell after jumping on a bed.

When officers arrived, they found the girl facedown, unconscious and bleeding. Investigators said the girl had been sexually assaulted, beaten with a belt and bitten.

The teenager is being held without bail and was ordered to undergo psychiatric evaluation.

BALTIMORE

Black history museum marks anniversary

The Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture in Baltimore is celebrating its first birthday.

The museum marked the occasion Saturday night with a reception that honored three local black leaders — the Rev. Harold Carter Sr. of New Shiloh Baptist Church and the Rev. Alfred Vaughn of Sharon Baptist Church, both in Baltimore, and Kimberly Oliver, the Silver Spring elementary school teacher named National Teacher of the Year for 2006.

The museum also celebrated all weekend with performances and arts and crafts.

Visitors were offered birthday cake and East African storytelling, Underground Railroad puppet shows and face painting with ancient African symbols.

SNOW HILL

State forest picked for snake’s return

Worcester County has been selected as the first site for the reintroduction of the rare northern pine snake to the Delmarva Peninsula.

Department of Natural Resources officials and the Salisbury Zoo told the county commissioners about their plans this month.

The snake, which has scattered habitats throughout the southeastern United States, has not been seen on Delmarva since 1972. Wildlife officials have selected the Pocomoke State Forest in southern Worcester as an ideal site for reintroduction.

The project is expected to take several years.

Department scientists will spend this summer building two winter habitats for the snakes, and next year will collect snake eggs in New Jersey, where the snakes are plentiful.

THURMONT

Couple charged with animal cruelty

Frederick County animal control has charged a Thurmont couple after an animal-control officer found a dead dog in their back yard earlier this month.

Jeffrey and Faith Kilby were charged with three animal-cruelty misdemeanors and served two criminal summonses.

In response to an animal-neglect call, an officer went to the Kilbys’ house on June 7 and found a cocker spaniel dead in the yard.

The dog’s hair was matted, and its nails needed trimming.

Other dogs at the home were evaluated but not removed from the house.

The Kilbys were charged with depriving an animal of necessary sustenance, inflicting unnecessary suffering or pain on an animal, and unnecessary failure to provide an animal with nutritious food in sufficient quantity, necessary veterinary care, proper drink, air, space, shelter or protection from the weather.

Each misdemeanor carries a 90-day jail term, a $1,000 fine or both.

ROCKY RIDGE

Daughter accused of shooting father

A 57-year-old man was seriously injured Sunday during a late-morning domestic dispute, the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office said.

Police said the man’s 32-year-old daughter shot him during a dispute that involved them and the man’s wife at 11 a.m. at a house in the 14000 block of Hoovers Mill Road.

The daughter suffered facial injuries in the fight and was taken to Frederick Memorial Hospital, where she was treated and released.

The man’s wife also suffered minor facial injuries but did not require hospital treatment.

Police did not release the names of any of the people involved.

No charges were filed.

COCKEYSVILLE

Man arrested in rape of 90-year-old

Baltimore County police have arrested a Baltimore man in the rape of a 90-year-old woman in Cockeysville in March.

Police said Raymond Peter Boyer, 42, was arrested at his home after he was identified through DNA from a red sweat shirt that they said he discarded near the scene. Police said he worked for a company about a mile away.

The woman answered the door about 8 a.m. and found a man asking for a light for his cigarette. Police said he then forced his way into her house and raped her.

Police said Mr. Boyer also took money from the woman’s purse.

HAGERSTOWN

Health officials probe harassment charges

State investigators said in a report that a Washington County health officer engaged in sexually harassing behavior while on the job on numerous occasions.

The report by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene also said William Christoffel created a hostile work environment for employees of the Health Department and the George W. Comstock Center for Public Health Research and Prevention.

An employee from the research center filed a complaint against the Health Department last month, saying Mr. Christoffel had been engaging in sexually harassing behavior.

Mr. Christoffel and his attorney said he never “purposely or knowingly” discriminated against anyone at the Health Department or the public.

They said Mr. Christoffel used humor to educate the public but would never consider making derogatory or offensive comments to staff or the public.

URBANA

Statue proposed for J.E.B. Stuart

Some residents of Urbana are suggesting slowing down traffic in town with a life-size statue of Confederate Gen. J.E.B. Stuart.

Their aim is twofold: Make drivers slow down and instill a sense of history in the oldest part of town.

Other area residents are not so sure that a Confederate general known for his fierce tactics is a good choice because strong feelings about the Civil War persist.

A life-size statue of Stuart would be erected on Route 355 between Lew Wallace Road and Route 80 to slow traffic. Stuart was born and raised in Patrick County, Va.

VIRGINIA

HARRISONBURG

Judge spares men who violated Patriot Act

A judge yesterday fined and put on probation three Kurdish men who transferred hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Middle East in violation of the nation’s anti-terrorism law.

The men, all of whom were granted asylum in the United States, could have been sentenced to up to five years in prison for violating the USA Patriot Act.

They said they were sending money to help relatives and friends and on behalf of Kurdish families who settled in Harrisonburg and elsewhere in the United States.

Although the government did not accuse the men of having terrorist ties, the charges against them were brought under changes adopted in the post-September 11 climate. Under the Patriot Act, those who transfer money can be charged even if they do not know their actions are illegal.

Rasheed Qambari was convicted in a jury trial in January; Amir Rashid and Ahmed Abdullah pleaded guilty to the same felony charge of operating an unlicensed money-transferring business.

Qambari was given three years’ probation and fined $6,600; Abdullah was placed on probation for 18 months and fined $3,100; and Rashid was put on probation for one year and fined $2,268.

Hydrant laws get tougher

Starting this weekend, stiffer punishments are in store for people who try to tap into hydrants illegally.

A bill passed by the General Assembly will make unlawful tampering with waterworks a Class 6 felony, which carries up to five years in jail.

Maliciously tampering with hydrants is a Class 3 felony, with a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a fine up to $100,000.

Another bill will allow let utility-service providers make people who tamper with hydrants pay damages.

The bills go into effect Saturday.

Campbell County Utilities and Service Authority administrator Mike Damron said one problem with illegal discharges was that the county had no way of knowing how much money was lost from the stolen water.

Mr. Damron said that without the proper connector, getting water from a hydrant could result in backflow, introducing harmful bacteria or other chemicals into the water supply.

That is what happened in Roanoke in 1979, when a pesticide company accidentally introduced the chemical chlordane into a neighborhood’s water system.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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