- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 8, 2015

Police at Fort Meade, Maryland, on Thursday apprehended a carjacking suspect who had led police officers in a car chase the night before, crashed into a fence at the Army facility, and prompted a more than 12-hour base lockdown and a manhunt after he fled from the stolen vehicle, officials said.

At a news conference Thursday afternoon, Army Col. Brian Foley, Fort Meade’s garrison commander, said the suspect was arrested as he emerged from a storm drain, where he had hidden all night.

Anne Arundel County Police tweeted at 10:45 a.m. Thursday that the suspect, later identified as Dante Small, had been placed in custody.

“He was located attempting to hide in the woods in the area,” county police said on Twitter.

The incident began about 8:45 p.m. Wednesday, when police officers near Arundel Mills Boulevard in Hanover noticed a car that had been reported stolen in a robbery in Baltimore, county police said.

The officers tried to stop the vehicle, but the driver led them on a 4.5-mile car chase to Rockenbach Road, where he crashed the car into a fence bordering Fort Meade, police said. The driver jumped out of the car and ran away onto the base.

Fort Meade Police locked down the base, took charge of the investigation and launched the manhunt, and county police provided canine units and air support to help find the driver. Only essential personnel were permitted to move around the base.

Home to the National Security Agency and U.S. Cyber Command, Fort Meade is a sprawling, 8-square-mile facility nestled in a heavily wooded area of north Anne Arundel County, located at Interstate 295 and Route 32. Access to the base from I-295 and Route 32 were closed Thursday morning as part of the base lockdown.

The lockdown not only disrupted operations at the base but also forced six public schools on or near Fort Meade to remain closed Thursday.

According to the Baltimore Sun, the stolen vehicle was a 2008 silver Acura TSX that Baltimore police said had been reported stolen Sunday night in the Federal Hill area. The carjacking victim told police that three men, one of whom had a gun, robbed him of his car after he had parked it in the 1000 block of Covington Street.

Anne Arundel County and Fort Meade police did not provide details about the vehicle and did not say if the suspect was armed. Police did say he had been apprehended “without incident.”

The incident is the second in recent months involving a stolen car crashed at an entrance at Fort Meade.

In March, police opened fire on a stolen SUV that had crashed through an NSA security checkpoint, killing one passenger and wounding the other. A checkpoint officer was injured slightly when he was hit by the SUV.

This article is based in part on wire service reports.

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