KEYSER MAN ARRESTED FOR BURGLARIES
Keyser resident Kurtis Edward Braithwaite has been accused of stealing more than $1200 from TS Cellular/Radio Shack, off Route 220. He is accused of going into the store after hours and taking money from the cash drawer. There was no forced entry, and Braithwaite got into the store, using a key from a TS Cellular employee. He is being held at the Potomac Highlands Jail on $6200 bond.
RENEWAL REQUESTED FOR AUTOCROSS EVENT
Because of new information received, there may be autocross events at the Greater Cumberland Regional Airport next year. Members of the National Road Autosport LLC are asking that a renewal for the event be placed on the October agenda of the Potomac Highlands Airport Authority. Delegate Gary Howell says Maryland U.S. Senator Ben Cardin has instructed the regional FAA office to work with the authority to prepare a plan for a non-aeronautical event to be held at the airport.
MCDA DISCUSSES TECHNOLOGY PARK
The Fort Ashby Business and Technology Park is being considered by "an organization or entity." MCDA members were tight-lipped about purchase of the park, because of confidentiality in the early portion of the purchase procedure. The acreage, plus the shell building would have to be sold for market value, as per the Federal Economic Development Agency rules. A suggestion was also made to contact state development officials for forgiveness of the loan for the building.
TWO ARRESTED FOR BURGLARY
Two people were arrested Sunday night on Emily Street, and charged with fourth-degree burglary and destruction of property. Queen City Drive residents James Anthony Moore and Carla Marie Gilmore were taken into custody. Both told police there were two other people in the home, but left prior to the arrival of police. They were taken for a bond hearing, and released on personal recognizance.
B-52 DOCUMENTARY BEING PRODUCED
A documentary film on the 1964 crash of a B-52 bomber in the Grantsville area is being prepared by the grandson of the pilot of the jet. Matt McCormick was in the Grantsville area for the 50th anniversary observance of the event in July, and is producing a film, which should be finished by next year or early 2016. A "Kickstarter" social media campaign has been started, to help Matt finish the film. So far, it has raised nearly $4,000 or the $25,000 needed. A preview of the film and directions on how to contribute to Kickstarter campaign can be found at "https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/mattmccormick.buzz-one-four."
ANNEXATION HEARING SET FOR TONIGHT
The city of Keyser will make their case on annexing 92 acres south and west of the city line before the Mineral County Commissioners tonight. A hearing last week drew few residents, but tonight's outcome will determine if the city will make a "minor boundary adjustment," and annex the land. Mayor Randy Amtower says the move is "critical to the future financial health of the city of Keyser," according to the Mineral News-Tribune.
SENATORS, CONGRESSMAN ANNOUNCE BEL AIR FUNDING
Maryland United States Senators Ben Cardin and Barbara Mikulski, along with U.S. Congressman John Delaney has announced that the Allegany County Board of Education has received a grant of over $34,000 from the Appalachian Regional Commission, to fund the extension of fiber optic cable at the Bel Air Elementary School, as announced last week. Bel Air is the only school in the county without fiber optic connectivity.
BROWN, HOGAN ACCUSE EACH OTHER OF LYING
Maryland's gubernatorial candidates are accusing one another of lying, as the campaign for the State House heats up. Even though Republican gubernatorial candidate Larry Hogan says that was not the case in primaries, the Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown's camp has come out with 4 attack ads. And, Hogan claims that Brown's campaign has violated one aspect of election laws. Hogan says one of Brown's ads claimed he (Hogan) was going to take $300 million out of funding for pre-K, and give it to wealthy corporations. Hogan claims the O'Malley/Brown administration has instituted 40 consecutive tax hikes, that have resulted in an increase of $10 billion.
GAS PRICES DECREASING
You may have noticed lower gas prices in the area, as Triple-A, Mid-Atlantic says the switch to a winter blend has driven the price to an average of $3.32 per gallon. A decrease in the price of gas this time of year is not unusual, with projections showing a 10 to 20 cent drop in the coming months.
ARRESTS MADE IN ILLEGAL GINSENG HARVESTING
Eleven arrests and 190 pounds of dry ginseng were seized in West Virginia. The West Virginia Department of Natural Resources estimates the market value at $180,000; also seized in the arrests were stolen guns, illegal drugs and $30,000 in cash. The ginseng digging season began September 1st and ends November 30th. The ginseng seized was harvested before the season began.
FLOOD RELIEF DEADLINE APPROACHING
Allegany and Washington County residents affected by the flooding of June 12th have until the end of the month-September 29th-to apply for state and federal disaster relief aid. More than 100 individuals and families have already applied. Impacted residents could receive up to $5,000 in assistance to pay expenses for temporary housing, medical needs, moving and storage, personal property, and vehicle damage. Residents may also be eligible for federal aid through the Small Business Administration Disaster Loan program. A Department of Human Resources case manager will be available this Tuesday through Thursday at the Allegany County Department of Social Services from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Residents should bring paperwork to document their storm expenses.
TWO PROMINENT COMMUNITY MEMBERS PASS
The former president of Allegany College of Maryland, Dr. Donald Alexander passed away Thursday in Williamsburg, Virginia, where he had been living since his 2008 retirement. He was 72. Funeral services are scheduled for Friday at 10 a.m. in his hometown of Uniontown, Pennsylvania. And, Steve Hospodavis, the former owner of Steve's Pharmacy, also passed away last Thursday. He had owed the pharmacy for 47 years until his retirement in 2008. Visitation will be held today from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. at the Scarpelli Funeral Home in Cresaptown. Services are scheduled for Tuesday.
WOMAN KILLED IN MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT
Fifty-six year old Brenda Wilt, of New Creek, was killed Saturday afternoon in a single-vehicle motorcycle accident on Route 50 near Junction. Her motorcycle went off the right edge of the road, and hit a guardrail around 1:15 p.m. She was ejected from the bike, and was pronounced dead of the scene. The crash remains under investigation.
FORMER KEYSER RESIDENT FACES 100 FELONY CHARGES
Keyser native Dr. Tressie Duffy is facing 100 felony counts, after she was indicted on federal charges that she prescribed prescription painkillers outside the scope of her professional practice. She is accused of signing blank prescription orders and allowing her employees to issue the prescriptions without being seen by a physician. She, along with two of her employees at the Martinsburg-based "West Virginia Weight and Wellness, Incorporated" business, were indicted. They each face up to 20 years in prison on each count, along with a fine of up to a million dollars.
FIVE MORE WEEKS OF ROADWORK
Beginning today, motorists should be prepared for five weeks of extended lane and ramp closures on I-68. Today through Friday, the left lane of westbound Interstate 68 will be closed. This weekend, the right lane of I-68 westbound will be closed, and the Exit43-C ramp from Westbound I-68 to downtown/Harrison Street may be detoured. The work is expected to last through Friday, October 31st.
SENTENCE AFFIRMED FOR BEDFORD COUNTY MAN
The Bedford County State's Attorney's Office has received word that an 80-year prison sentence for a convicted sex offender has been affirmed by the Superior Court of Pennsylvania. Fifty-three year old Kerry Charles Smith of Everett was convicted of 69 counts of sexual misconduct, including five counts of the rape of a then 7 year old child.
CAPON BRIDGE MAN SENTENCED IN SHOOTING SPREE
Capon Bridge resident Chris Fleming, who went on a shooting spree on Labor Day of 2012, was sentenced to four to 20 years on several counts, and an additional eight years. He had been found guilty of attempted murder, 12 counts of wanton endangerment and one count of fleeing in reckless indifference to the safety of others. Fleming's attorneys had argued that he had post traumatic stress syndrome from serving in Iraq, and didn't remember what had happened.
VALLEY ROAD MAINTENANCE SCHEDULED
Street repairs will be done on Valley Road, at Old Valley Road, beginning today. The work involves about 1.3 miles from Henderson Avenue. It will continue through Wednesday, weather permitting. During the work, Valley Road will be one-lane traffic at the construction site.
MAN CHARGED IN ASSAULT...BY CAR
Thirty-seven year old Michael Ford was held on $3,000 bail, following a Saturday evening incident in the 400-block of Grand Avenue. He and a female got into a verbal argument; they both got into separate vehicles, and began running them into each other. The woman got out of her car, and was struck by the door of a car, operated by Ford. She was knocked to the ground, and later taken to the hospital for treatment. Ford fled the scene, but later returned and was arrested. The investigation is continuing and further charges may be pending.
ICF WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS CONCLUDE
While the 2014 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships concluded at the ASCI facility in Garrett County yesterday, the eyes of the world could once again be on Garrett County in 2024, as the Washington, D.C. area is hoping to host the Olympics then. Connie Yingling, of the Maryland Office of Tourism says during this past weekend, Garrett County was the center of adventure sports activities. Sara Duck, the director of tourism for Garrett County, says the championships have had a tremendously positive economic impact for the area. And, the people have a lot to do with its success. She commented on how involved the community has been.
AMTRAK EXHIBIT TRAIN DUE IN CUMBERLAND
An Amtrak exhibit train is due in Cumberland next Saturday and Sunday. A specially painted locomotive, celebrating veterans and showcasing the past, present and future of America's Railroads, the train will be open for tours during the Steel Wheels Festival at the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad on Canal Street. Visitors are welcome to board for free tours from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days.
ONE OF "MOST WANTED" CAPTURED IN D.C.
Elan Bell-Veney of Martinsburg, one of the U.S. Marshal's Fugitive Task Force's "Most Wanted" was capture late last week, hiding out in an apartment in Washington, D.C. Bell-Veney was wanted for malicious wounding, from an incident that occurred at the Shipwrecked Bar in Martinsburg in June. An investigation showed that he had been assisted by family and friends to remain on the run. When arrested, he gave police a false name. He will be returned to West Virginia to answer charges lodged against him.
TWO PROMINENT COMMUNITY MEMBERS PASS
The former president of Allegany College of Maryland, Dr. Don Alexander has passed away. He had been at the college for 35 years, and President of the institution for 28. Dr. Alexander retired in 2008. Funeral arrangements have not been announced. And, the former owner of Steve's Pharmacy in Bel Air, Steve Hospodavis passed away Thursday at the age of 72. The Scarpelli Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements, which are incomplete at this time.
NUMEROUS CHARGES FILED AGAINST FSU STUDENT
A total of 16 charges have been filed against Frostburg State University student Zakiyy Asi Jacobs, following a knife incident during a party in Frostburg last Sunday. Jacobs is accused of cutting a 21-year old Cumberland man, causing minor injuries. The party took place in the 100-block of Bowery Street. He was charged, and jailed until Wednesday of this week, when he posted $20,000 for his pretrial release. The incident was investigated by Frostburg Police.
HAGERSTOWN MAN ARRESTED IN SOUTH CUMBERLAND
Hagerstown resident Antonio Rodney was held on $2500 bond, following his arrest in the 300-block of Arch Street Wednesday. Rodney's vehicle was stopped, and officers discovered there were problems with the registration. A search of his car yielded suspected crack cocaine, and a pipe. He was charged with one count each of possession of CDS and paraphernalia. He was to have had a bond review yesterday.
THREE ENTER PLEAS IN GARRETT COUNTY COURT
An Oakland man, and two from out of the area, have entered guilty pleas on various charges in Garrett County. Pocomoke resident Kavon Candre Rowley was sentenced to three years, with all but 30 days suspended for second-degree burglary. Oakland resident Jeffrey Corby pleaded guilty to various drug charges, and sentencing was postponed to a later date. And, Richard Cunningham of Virginia Beach pleaded guilty to possession of alprazolam and was sentenced to a one-year suspended sentence, and placed on two years probation.
PIEDMONT STREET REOPENED
Second Street in Piedmont has been re-opened, eight months after a fire which destroyed several buildings there. The buildings continued to collapse after the fire, aided by high winds this past spring. Some of those buildings were leveled this past weekend, after Piedmont resident Joe Amoroso did some demolition work. Town officials are still looking for money to continue demolishing the buildings.
WHEELS FOR HAPPINESS RESCHEDULED
The new date for the annual Wheels for Happiness event will be Saturday, September 27th from10 a.m. to 4 p.m. the event is being held at the Festival Grounds at Canal Place. Anything on wheels is eligible to participate in the show. There'll be an awards presentation, where over a dozen participants will be recognized. Loudon Baker will be recognized as the "Rodder of the Year," based on his perseverance in overcoming physical obstacles to enjoy his chosen activity.
LEADERSHIP SERIES TO BE PRESENTED
"The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Leadership Team" will be presented by the Greater Cumberland Committee next Wednesday, September 24th at Garrett College. Presenting the introductory session will be Jeannette Rudy Fitzwater, a registered corporate coach and human resources director. Following the 12 noon presentation, there will be a luncheon, along with an overview of Deep Creek 2014. The event will be held in Room 205 of the Continuing Education Building.
ASCI COULD HOST OLYMPIC EVENTS
The Adventure Sports Institute in Garrett County could host a portion of the 2024 Olympics. Connie Yingling of the Maryland Office of Tourism says the District of Columbia is putting in a bid to host the event in 2024. Some Olympic officials will be on hand today, to "scout" the location, should the District be approved to host the games.
PICKETING AT NEW PRESTON HOSPITAL
There is an ongoing picket at the site of the new Preston Memorial Hospital, with members of a carpenter's union claiming a subcontractor is not paying the prevailing wage. The private project is exempt from the prevailing wage law, and the general contractor can hire workers from anywhere and pay any rate. However, the West Virginia Division of Labor is trying to determine whether the prevailing wage is applicable in this situation.
RESIDENT REQUESTS SAFER BUS STOP
Mineral County resident Brenda Keating has requested the Board of Education take action on moving a bus stop in the Potomac Heights area to what she feels would be a safer location. She is asking the board to move the stop to Ridge Street, where there is more room for the children to wait for the bus. There are no sidewalks and very little room to get around at the present stop.
MARIJUANA COMMISSION WORKING ON REGULATIONS
A Maryland commission, dealing with medical marijuana regulations will meet again on Tuesday, even though there had been a Monday deadline to finish drafting regulations for review by state officials. One of the issues is to decide how many dispensaries will be allowed under the law.
HEIGHTENED AWARENESS FOR STATE POLICE
The Pennsylvania State Police in Somerset are in a heightened state of awareness since the recent shooting at the Blooming Grove, Pennsylvania barracks that left one trooper dead, and one hospitalized. All of the barracks in the Blooming Grove region have tightened security, and in Somerset, police say their thoughts and prayers are with their brothers and sisters in northeastern Pennsylvania.
SOMERSET PRIEST PUT ON LEAVE
Father Joseph Maurizio of Somerset County has agreed to step away from his parish duties, after a search was conducted at Our Lady, Queen of Angels rectory. Federal investigators would not say what they were there for, but acknowledged it was part of an ongoing investigation. The Altoona-Johnstown Diocese says it wasn't aware of the search, and is not aware if any charges have been filed.
INMATE DEATH RULED HOMICIDE
Western Correctional Institution inmate John Wyatt died last Friday, and investigators are saying the death is a homicide. Wyatt, who had been serving a 20-year sentence for sexual assault charges, was found dead in his cell around 9 a.m.; it was first thought he had died from natural causes. The Maryland State Police Homicide Unit, along with the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services are investigating. One of those to be interviewed will be Wyatt's cellmate.
CONTRACT NEGOTIATIONS AT AN IMPASSE
Current contract negotiations between the city and the Cumberland Police Department have been declared at an impasse. While the city and union are currently in the middle of a three-year contract, which expires next June 30th, it does allow for a "reopener" clause whereby wages and other benefits can be discussed this fall. According to a representative for the union, the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1994, the officers have not had a raise in four years, and are working with a minimum staff.
RKG ASSOCIATES PRESENTS MORE FINDINGS
RKG Associates have determined that targeting the development of small business in Cumberland may be the key to economic revival for the city of Cumberland. The group says that attracting numerous small businesses, rather than one major employer, could be a better use of the city's efforts. Small business and home-based businesses could be a part of the solution.
MISSING KIDS CASE HAS LOCAL CONNECTION
As police begin to build a homicide case against Catherine Hoggle, whose children have gone missing in Montgomery County, the children's aunt-Robyn Turner of Frostburg-is holding out hope the children can be found and returned safely. Ms. Turner is the sister of the children's father, Troy Turner. Ms. Hoggle remains in police custody, and has so far continued to, as police describe it, "obstruct and hinder the investigation."
KEYSER WASTEWATER SUPERVISOR RESIGNS
Keyser wastewater treatment plant supervisor Mike Kesecker has resigned, the second staff member to resign recently. City Clerk Carol Kiggins has left that position as well. Kesecker had been a key employee in the day-to-day operations of the plant, as Keyser prepares to begin construction on a new, $30 million wastewater treatment plant; it is due to go online next year, but the resignation may mean the project could be delayed for up to a year. Kesecker has accepted a position in the private sector, and his resignation is effective at the end of the month.
CUMBERLAND MAN HELD ON TRAFFIC, DRUG CHARGES
Cumberland resident John Stanford Rickenberg was being held on $4,000 bond, after he was arrested on Virginia Avenue late Monday afternoon. A traffic stop, and check of his license revealed he had been driving on a suspended driver's license. A K-9 scan of his car yielded a positive alert for narcotics, and a small amount of marijuana and prescription pills were found. Following a bond hearing at District Court, he was taken to the Allegany County Detention Center.
POLICE SEARCH FOR VEHICLE OWNER
The McHenry barrack of the Maryland State Police is asking for the public's help in finding the owner of a 2007 Ford Fusion, which was found on the Squire Fike Road this past weekend. The car has Pennsylvania registration and was seen along the road between Saturday night and Sunday afternoon. Anyone with information is asked to contact State Police at (301)-387-1101.
ADVISORY COMMISSION TO MEET
The Cumberland Neighborhood Advisory Commission will meet on Monday, September 29th, beginning at 5:30 p.m. The meeting, which is held on a monthly basis, will be held at City Hall. It is open to the public. For more information, call City Hall at (301)-759-6424.
PRESTON COUNTY MAN SENTENCED FOR ARSON
Preston County, West Virginia resident David Allen Ridenour has been sentenced to ten years in prison for an October, 2012 arson fire in Terra Alta. The fire destroyed an outbuilding and damaged the side of a mobile home. He had been indicted on two arson charges, and pleaded guilty to one, while the other was dismissed. Ridenour also will have to pay court costs and restitution for each of the two properties he set on fire.
POLICE LOOKING FOR PICKU P TRUCK IN FATAL ACCIDENT
Hagerstown City Police are looking for a white "older model" pickup truck that may have been involved in a fatal vehicle-motorcycle collision this past weekend at the intersection of West Wilson Boulevard and Virginia Avenue. Eyewitnesses say the truck is a 1980's or early 1990's truck, either a Ford or Chevrolet full-sized pickup.
HEALTH EXCHANGE WEBSITE HITTING TARGET DATES
Following last year's crash of the Maryland Health Exchange website, a new one will be online as an "anonymous browsing tool" on November 9th. Dr. Joshua Sharfstein, Secretary of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, says residents will be able to be able to browse policies, without having to actually enroll. The Secretary of the Department of Information Technology, Isabel FitzGerald, is saying the project is hitting its target dates, according to Dr. Sharfstein. Combinations of many different scenarios are being considered, according to Dr. Sharfstein."User testing" is going on now, and the initial development is complete. On November 9th, users will be able to investigate new policies.
W. VA. LEADS NATION IN SMOKING DURING PREGNANCY
Twenty-six per cent of West Virginia's expectant mothers smoke, and that statistic leads the country. A survey by West Virginia Kids Count released a report this week that nearly one in four continue to smoke, even after learning they are expecting, and that statistic hasn't changed that much in the past 20 years. Some of the adverse effects of smoking during pregnancy include sudden infant death syndrome, low birth rate, premature births, asthma, and attention deficit disorder.
CPPDA NAMES DEVELOPER
The Canal Place Preservation and Development Authority has named Michael Joy of Washington, D.C., as the exclusive developer of the Footer Dye Works building. The contract was announced during the CPPDA meeting yesterday. Plans are for the structure to be developed into a multi-use building. Along with Joy, there will be two equal partners in the development of the building, including Bruce Firlie of Cumberland, and Eric Wishneff \, of Brian and Wishneff Associates, a tax credit specialist in Arlington, Virginia.
FIREFIGHTERS CONTRACT RATIFIED
The Cumberland Mayor and City Council voted unanimously last night, to ratify a new, three-year contract with firefighters. The vote ends two years of negotiations with the International Association of Firefighters, Local 1715. The contract, between the city and 61 members of the paid fire department, was ratified by the union last week.
DRUG CHARGES DROPPED AGAINST SOME RESIDENTS
Charges against five people, indicted earlier this year in connection with a drug distribution ring in Keyser have been dropped. Four people have pleaded guilty to taking part in the operation, while Samaria Alice Clifford and Dixie Cherylann Layman of Keyser, Tequila Smith, of Ranson, West Virginia, Sheena Collins of Oakland and Travis Sinclair Howard of Florida had charges dismissed. A total of 73 indictments were handed down in March, and of the 13 persons in the area who were charged, four have so far entered guilty pleas, and are awaiting sentencing.
LOAN SECURED FOR MAPLEHURST
A new loan has been secured by Maplehurst Country Club, which provides for the payment of all back taxes and the delinquent mortgage. DLR Southwest Investments of Las Vegas will finance the loans and taxes. First United Bank and Trust had foreclosed on the club , but public auctions in both July and August were postponed, in order to secure a new loan.
CANAL BASIN TESTED
A rented pump has been placed in the Canal Place basin, to test it for leaks that have happened in recent months. One of the pumps has been sent to Hancock for repairs, but it was necessary to refill the basin to study where the leaks are occurring. During a visit to the area earlier this month, Senator Ben Cardin said he was concerned about the leaks; a total of $30,000 in grants was secured to fund the canal basin repairs.
PLEA WITHDRAWL DENIED FOR GERHOLT
John Lewis Gerholt of Bedford County, who is serving a life sentence for the murder of his wife in 2008, has had a request to withdraw his guilty plea, denied. He had maintained he did not understand the terms of a plea agreement. Gerholt had entered a no contest plea to first-degree murder, in exchange for having the death penalty "taken off the table." The court denied the plea change near the end of August, and State's Attorney Bill Higgins says he has no doubt Gerholt will appeal that decision.
MAN CHARGED WITH ASSAULT
Twenty-four year old Daniel Penrod is being charged with second-degree assault, following an incident in the 500-block of Warren Street Monday evening. He is accused of waking a female victim, arguing with her, and grabbing her by the neck, attempting to choke her. The victim's injuries did not require medical attention. After an initial appearance in District Court, he was released on personal recognizance.
CUMBERLAND MAN HELD ON $45,000 BOND
Cumberland resident Chad Izat was held on $45,000 bond, after he was accused of assaulting another person with a baseball bat. He also is accused of throwing a vacuum, striking a juvenile in the shoulder area. The alleged assault took place on South Waverly Terrace, and Izat was found a short distance away. He faces various assault charges and a count of reckless endangerment. The victim was taken to the hospital for treatment; the juvenile did not require treatment.
ROUTE 219 INFORMATIONAL WORKSHOP SCHEDULED
The Maryland State Highway Administration, in cooperation with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) is holding an informational workshop for the U.S. 219 Project Planning Study. The meeting will be held next Tuesday, from 5:30 to 8 p.m. No formal presentation will be given, and you may arrive at any time during workshop hours. The workshop is being held at the Grantsville Elementary School Cafeteria on Grant Street.
MOTORCYCLIST IN FATAL COLLISION IDENTIFIED
Police have identified 33-year old Darren Reeder as the victim of Sunday's fatal hit and run crash on Wilson Boulevard at Virginia Avenue. Reeder was pronounced dead at Meritus Medical Center shortly after the 11:37 p.m. accident, which involved another vehicle that did not remain at the scene. Anyone with information is asked to contact police at (301)-790-3700.
MISSING MONTGOMERY COUNTY KIDS BELIEVED DEAD
Police are pursuing a double-homicide case against Catherine Hoggle, who still is refusing to tell them where her children are. Montgomery County law enforcement authorities are searching parks and wooded areas for 3-year old Sarah and 2-year old Jacob Hoggle, who were last seen September 7th. An unusual plea has been made for homeowners to search their properties for any sign of the children's bodies.
STATE OFFERING HELP FOR THOSE REPRESENTING THEMSELVES
The Maryland Judiciary is helping those who want to represent themselves in court. Pam Ortiz, the head of the Access to Justice Department says the program is aimed at civil cases, where often, people represent themselves. When navigating the court system, Ms. Ortiz says people may need to know what first steps they should take.Some of the resources are already in place; she says you should go to the Maryland Court System website for that information.
POLITICAL ATTACK ADS ON THE RISE
The top campaign priority for Governor is voter turnout, but attack ads seem to be the order of the day as Election Day gets closer. An Anthony Brown ad claims that Larry Hogan is "the wrong direction for Maryland," while Hogan counters with "Anthony Brown: just not ready to be Governor." One of Hogan's ads discredits Brown's leadership, using the health care rollout as an example. And, a Brown ad accuses Hogan of putting corporations before kids. One survey shows that attack ads claim to be less effective, but are used to "muddy the water" in advance of the election.
COMPLAINT FILED IN ALLEGED ASSAULT
Two Cumberland men have been arrested in connection with an alleged assault incident on August 18th. Both Michael Paul Wigfield and Roger Russell Miller are accused of assaulting another person, resulting in severe facial and head injuries, which required treatment. Both were charged with two counts of second-degree assault. They were processed and released on $10,000 unsecured bonds.
EVERETT TEEN CHARGED WITH DESECRATION
In a case that has garnered national attention, a 14-year old Everett boy has been charged by police, with desecrating a statue of Jesus, then posting pictures online in July. While he has been charged, the American Civil Liberties Union has expressed interest in the case, stating he was expressing his freedom of speech. The owner of the statue, "Love in the Name of Christ Ministry Center," has not pressed charges; however, they told District Attorney Bill Higgins they would welcome the idea of him performing community service at the center.
SEVERANCE FACES THREE MURDER COUNTS
In a story reported last week, former Cumberland resident Charles Severance was indicted on three murder charges, stemming from a series of murders in northern Virgina. He is being charged with the 2003 murder of Nancy Dunning, wife of then-Sheriff James Dunning; the fatal shooting of transportation planner Ronald Kirby last November; and, the February, 2014 shooting of music teacher Ruthanne Lodato. Two of the three murders carry a potential death sentence, but prosecutors have indicated they won't seek his execution.
ANIMAL DEATHS REPORTED IN HAMPSHIRE COUNTY AREA
Two animal deaths over the weekend, with one of the cases resulting in charges. In the first, a Yorkshire Terrier was killed by another dog in the Whipporwill Drive area. No charges have been brought against the owner of the dog that attached the 11-year old Yorkie. In the second incident, Robert Davis was charged with animal cruelty, after he killed a cat in the parking lot of the Romney Rite-Aid./ Davis was released on $2500 bond on Saturday.
"PUSH POLLS" DRAW COOKMAN COMPLAINT
Donald Cookman of Romney, who is running as the Democratic candidate for the 15th District State Senate seat, is filing a complaint with West Virginia Secretary of State. The complaint alleges that his opponent, Berkeley Springs lawyer Charles Trump, or the state Republican party arranged for so-called "push polls," which are illegal in West Virginia. The poll supposedly gathers information, but asks questions in a way that persuades those receiving the calls, to deliver an opinion, usually negative.
MARTIRANO OFFICIALLY W. VA. SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENT
Michael Martirano, formerly of this area, officially became the 30th West Virginia State Superintendent of Schools yesterday. He came to Charleston from St. Mary's County, Maryland, and it is generally felt that Martirano will have a positive impact on the state and its students. According to the most recent figures, 79.3 per cent of high school seniors graduated during the 2013-2014 school year, up from 70.8 per cent in 2008-2009. Martirano was sworn in during ceremonies held yesterday at the state Culture Center.
CHILD SAFETY SEAT INSPECTION THIS WEEK
An event this Thursday will address the correct installation of child safety seats. Mia Perlozzo-Cross, of the Allegany County Board of Education, says the safety check will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. in the Frostburg State University parking lot, across from Beall Elementary School. The event is being done through the cooperation of the Judy Center, United Way, and the Family Junction.
SCHOLARSHIP ESTABLISHED BY AREA RESIDENT
Area resident Dennis Bittinger has established a scholarship in honor of his late brother, Corporal Robert Bittinger. Mia Perlozzo-Cross, of the Allegany County Board of Education, says Corporal Bittinger was an Army veteran, having served in the Vietnam War. He passed away in April of this year.
FATAL MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT MAY HAVE BEEN HIT AND RUN
An unidentified motorcyclist was killed late Sunday evening at the intersection of Wilson Boulevard and Virginia Avenue in Hagerstown. Police say his motorcycle may have made contact with a second, unknown vehicle that did not remain on the scene. The victim was taken to Meritus Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead shortly after his arrival. Anyone with information on the crash should contact Hagerstown Police at (301)-790-3700 or visit the website, "www.hagerstownmd.org."
DERECHO HEARINGS HELD BY P.S.C.
A hearing on the response time of the 2012 derecho weather event was held by the state Public Service Commission. Officials from several power companies testified on what steps they have taken to improve the way service is restored after severe storms. The PSC wants power restored faster, as some customers were without power for as long as two weeks. The commission will use information gathered from the hearings to come up with new standards for utilities to restore power.
MOTHER REFUSES TO COOPERATE WITH AUTHORITIES
A Montgomery County woman, who was missing for a time last week, is refusing to tell police where her children are, and police believe the children may be dead. Catherine Hoggle has been arrested in connection with the case, while the search for three-year old Sarah, and two-year old Jacob Hoggle is continuing. Catherine Hoggle was found in Germantown, and so far, has been charged with child neglect; police are continuing to build a murder case against her.
GAS PRICES SHOULD DROP THIS MONTH
Switching to less expensive, winter-blend gasoline should drive the prices down sometime this month. Ahead of the change-over, the national average for a gallon of unleaded gasoline was $3.41, as of late last week. Prices traditionally decline after the Labor Day holiday, as the summer driving season ends. The average price in the state of Maryland last week was $3.37.
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