MAN, 30, ACCUSED OF UPSCALE ROBBERIES
County police have charged a Columbia man with 10 burglaries of upscale homes in western Howard County, where a hit-and-run thief has been plundering jewelry and electronic equipment, a police spokesman said.
Several of the stolen televisions, camera equipment and gold jewelry were recovered Tuesday when police searched the suspect's home, said Sgt.
Gary L. Gardner.
Lorenzo Leon Brown, 30, of the 5400 block of Wild Lilac, is charged with 10 counts of burglary and is being held on $10,000 bond at the Howard County Detention Center.
Brown was arrested at 3 p.m. Sunday after a police officer linked him to a burglary moments earlier at a home in the 2100 block of Sand Hill Road in Marriottsville, police said.
A witness to the break-in at the Sand Hill Road residence told an investigating officer that a red Ford pickup truck appeared to have been the get-away car of the burglar, police said.
Also, it appeared that the burglar had been severely cut when he broke a window to gain entrance to the home.
Acting on a hunch, the officer went to the parking lot outside the emergency room of Howard County General Hospital and spotted a red pickup truck.
The license plate of the truck matched that provided by the witness, police said.
Police say Brown, the truck's owner, was arrested after being treated in the emergency room for cuts to his left arm.
Detectives say they are sorting through the property recovered. The investigation into the string of burglaries is continuing, police said.
POLICE SAY BROTHERS COMMITTED ARSON
County police have arrested one man and are seeking his brother for a Nov. 28 arson in Ellicott City, a police spokesman said.
Police say they arrested Marvin Ronald Gray Jr., 32, of the 2600 block of Bunker Hill Road in Woodstock, at his home shortly before 5:40 a.m.
Thursday after a witness identified him to police as one of two men who set the house fire.
The other suspect, Mark Dwayne Gray, has been charged in a warrant and is being sought by police, said Sgt. Robert Adams.
Both men have been charged with breaking and entering and arson in the 4400 block of Montgomery Road, the home of Debra Edwards, Marvin Gray's former girlfriend.
The house was broken into late in the afternoon while no one was home and several rooms were set on fire.
The fire caused an estimated $40,000 worth of damage to the home, fire officials said. The home also had been broken into the previous day and several pieces of electronic equipment were stolen, police said.
Police said Edwards reported that the two had been having domestic problems in the weeks preceding the burglary and the arson.
Marvin Gray has been charged with an additional count of breaking and entering in connection with a burglary at the house the day before, police said.
He is being held in lieu of $20,000 bond at the Howard County Detention Center.
MAN KILLED IN JESSUP AFTER FALLING 20 FEET
A Woodlawn man was killed Wednesday morning in Jessup when he fell approximately 20 feet from a forklift platform, county police and rescue workers said.
The victim, William Morris, 55, of the 3500 block of Flannery Lane, was loading bakery products onto a wooden pallet when he fell to the concrete floor below, police said.
Morris died of cardiac arrest after suffering massive head injuries.
Police say the accident is under investigation by the Maryland Occupational Safety and Health administration.
The incident occurred shortly before 2 a.m. at Frank A. Cerio & Sons baking supply company in the 8400 block of Dorsey Run Road. After Morris loaded supplies onto a forklift pallet, the machine's operator began lowering the platform to the ground, police said.
Morris fell off the platform shortly after the forklift operator set the machine in motion, police said.
He was flown by helicopter to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center at University Hospital in Baltimore, where he was pronounced dead shortly after arriving.
POLICE TO PATROL EXTRA FOR HOLIDAYS
County police will increase patrols in shopping areas throughout the county in an attempt to curb holiday-related crime, police Chief Frederick W. Chaney announced last week.
An undisclosed number of officers from the county police Special Operations and patrol divisions will be monitoring The Mall in Columbia and other shopping areas and expect to be in frequent contact with shop owners, Chaney said.
Police say officers have been encouraged to become acquainted with merchants and their business operations.
The officers also will offer suggestions to merchants about reducing the opportunities for crime, Chaney said.
Police will be using both marked and unmarked cars during the patrols.
Additional foot patrols are also planned in the Columbia village centers and other shopping areas.
The increased staffing of the shopping areas begins tomorrow and will be in effect through Christmas Eve.
In addition, police offer these safety tips for area shoppers during the holiday season:
* Park in a well-lighted area.