- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 1, 2009


Driver arrested near White House

Authorities near the White House arrested a man after he drove up to a security checkpoint and drew the attention of police dogs Wednesday night, police said.

The car approached a checkpoint at an intersection near Lafayette Park just after 6 p.m., police said.

Andrew Martin, 20, of Delaware, was charged with possession of unregistered ammunition (shotgun shells) and having an unregistered vehicle, said Ed Donovan, a spokesman for the Secret Service. The car was found to be safe about two hours later, he said.

GOP loses dispute over Brown’s election

D.C.’s Republican Party said it has lost a challenge to the election of Michael Brown as an independent member of the city council.

The party filed a petition with the D.C. Court of Appeals in December claiming that Mr. Brown is a Democrat and that his election violated a law preventing the city’s four at-large council members from belonging to a single party.

Mr. Brown has said his voter registration card confirms he is an independent, and on Wednesday the court dismissed the Republican Party’s legal challenge.

D.C. Republican Committee Chairman Robert Kabel called the court’s decision “disappointing” and said it opens the door for more questionable elections.



Teen held in robbery tied to Craigslist

Annapolis police arrested a Crofton teen suspected of using Craigslist as a front for attracting three buyers before he robbed them at gunpoint.

Charles Edward Carroll Jr., 17, is in custody on armed robbery, assault, theft and other charges, police said.

The victims on Dec. 23 and Dec. 26 were in Annapolis to meet with someone advertising gift cards and cell phones for sale on Craigslist.

Instead, police said, the teen pulled a gun to rob the victims of cash, their cell phone and other items, some of which he then posted for sale on Craigslist.

The teen was taken into custody Friday by an Annapolis detective who was near one of the robberies. Police said the victim identified the Carroll youth as the person who robbed him.


Road reopened after pipe burst

A busy commuter route recently flooded by a broken water main was to reopen Wednesday night, the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission said.

The 5 1/2-foot diameter pipe broke Dec. 23, sending a rush of water onto River Road. Several motorists had to be rescued from their cars.

Crews have replaced 80 feet of pipe and will soon begin filling a hole that was dug to make repairs, the commission said.

The cause of the water main break remains under investigation. The pipe that broke was installed in 1964.


Two charged in football shooting

Two Cordova men are being held without bond in a shooting stemming from an argument about a football game.

Damian Alexander, 28, and Shane Ratliff, 19, both face multiple counts of attempted murder, reckless endangerment and assault. Mr. Ratliff is also charged as an accessory after the fact.

The Star Democrat of Easton reported that the shooting happened Sunday evening during a dispute about the televised game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Dallas Cowboys.

Mr. Alexander shot at least five rounds from a shotgun at four people in a sport utility vehicle outside a home on Harris Range Road, witnesses told police. Shotgun pellets hit two of the occupants, causing minor injuries.


Two businesses left at Market House

Only two businesses are left at the historic Market House.

Chesapeake Bay Crab Cakes left its corner stall at the market this week leaving just Vaccaro’s Italian Pastry Shop and BankAnnapolis in the market by Annapolis’ City Dock.

In 2006, the city completed renovations to repair damage from Hurricane Isabel and agreed to a 10-year, $100,000-a-year lease with Market House Ventures, a subsidiary of Silver Spring-based Site Realty Group.

Vendors complained about the cooling systems when they moved in and two business shut their stalls in October 2007. Over a year and a half, nine of the 11 businesses at the market have closed.

In December, Market House Ventures sued the city, citing its failure to fix the market’s faulty heating and cooling system.

Mayor Ellen Moyer says the city would love to get out of the contract.


Video shows teen igniting boy’s hair

Two Wicomico County teenagers have been charged in lighting a boy’s hair on fire. They recorded video of the attack on a camera phone, police said.

The victim was sleeping early Sunday at a home in Eden when Forrest Wilson, 17, of Allen poured lighter fluid on his hair and set it ablaze, the Wicomico County Sheriff’s Office said. The victim managed to put out the fire, then discovered a boy, 14, was nearby recording the video.

A deputy determined the video clearly showed Mr. Wilson light the victim’s hair on fire, investigators said.

Mr. Wilson and the 14-year-old are charged with first- and second-degree assault and other charges. Mr. Wilson is charged as an adult.


Schools chief dies suddenly

Harford County public school officials are remembering Superintendent Jacqueline Haas as “a woman of extraordinary achievement whose dedication to students was evident in every decision she made.”

Mrs. Haas died Tuesday from complications caused by a severe asthma attack, school system spokeswoman Teri Kranefield said. Mrs. Haas had problems with asthma in the past, however Ms. Kranefield said the death was “very sudden.”

Mrs. Haas’ husband, James Haas, said his wife was stricken about 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at their home in Aberdeen.

Mrs. Haas, 36, was named Maryland Superintendent of the Year for the 2008 school year by the Public Schools Superintendents Association of Maryland.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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