Investigation into Cause of Double Fatal Fire Continues
Deputy State Fire Marshals are continuing to investigate the cause of the double fatal fire on East Harrison Street Friday morning. Seven-year old Paige Ford and four-year old Jymera Ford lost their lives in the 6:05 a.m. blaze. The childrens’ mother, Tandra Ford was treated for smoke inhalation injuries received in the fire, and an 8-month old infant escaped the fire unharmed. About 100 firefighters from Allegany and Mineral counties were on the scene. Three firefighters received non-life threatening injuries, and were treated and released from the hospital. Damages have been set at $200,000.
Hagerstown Man Indicted on Rape Charges
Nineteen year old Bryan Wayne Whitmore of Hagerstown has been arrested, after being charged by an Allegany County Grand Jury on charges of rape and assault. The incident stems back to September of last year, when Frostburg Police were alerted to a victim being treated at the hospital for a sexual assault. Forensic evidence was gathered and forwarded to the Maryland State Police Crime Lab for analysis, and Whitmore was identified as the suspect. Bond was set at $10,000. Whitmore posted bond, and is free, pending his next court appearance.
Frostburg Woman Victim of Strong Armed Robbery
Frostburg resident Zachary Winner has been arrested in connection with a strong-armed robbery which occurred Saturday afternoon in Frostburg. Winner allegedly forced his way into the home of an elderly Mount Pleasant Street woman. He shoved her to the ground and removed jewelry from the residence. Investigators found some of the victim’s jewelry at Winner’s Old National Pike residence. Also arrested was 21-year old Melissa Ann McAteer of Frostburg. She is charged with obstruction of justice and making a false statement to a police officer. Both received an initial appearance before a District Court Commissioner.
Electrical Fire in Frostburg
A fire at 286 East Main Street in Frostburg early Friday morning has been ruled accidental and electrical in nature. The three-story, single-family dwelling is owned by Richard Kerr, and the fire did approximately $50,000 in damage to the structure and its contents. The fire was discovered by the owner. There were no injuries. The initial call was received at 3:00 a.m. Friday, and brought out approximately 50 firefighters from seven companies in Allegany, Garrett and Mineral Counties.
Police Looking for Help in Investigation
No arrests have been made in the murder of Daniel Corey of Romney, and city police there are seeking the public’s help. Corey was found dead at his home on South High Street of a gunshot wound to the upper chest area; he was pronounced dead at Hampshire Memorial Hospital. Anyone who may have seen or heard something around 8 p.m. on January 8th is asked to contact the police department at (304)-822-4060.
Commissioners Move to Appoint Jail Chaplain
The Bedford County prison board of directors is moving to appoint a new jail chaplain. At the meeting last week, it was explained to two new county commissioners that long-time chaplain Myrl Musselman had been dismissed by Warden Donald Orr, after 11 years of service. One commissioner, Chairman Kirt Morris, says he believes the commissioners should appoint a new chaplain to “take it off the warden’s plate.” The commissioners agreed that they should make the appointment, just as they do with other positions.
Gas Prices on the Rise
If you haven’t noticed, gas prices have been inching up, and are now at historic highs for January. The average price of regular-grade gasoline is $3.39 per gallon, 11 cents higher than at the start of 2012, and four cents higher than last week. Crude oil is now priced at $98.70 per barrel, down from $101.56 per barrel last week and $91 per barrel this time last year.
Animal Abuse Registry Proposed
Much the same as Maryland has a sex offender registry, one state lawmaker wants to create an animal abuse registry in the state. Senator Ronald Young says he has the support from animal rights advocates, who say the state needs the law now. The registry would prevent convicted abusers from getting another animal. If passed, the abuser’s photo and address would be listed on the registry for 10 years. The bill should be introduced in the General Assembly this week.