Stolen cabin cruiser goes up in flames

August 24, 1991

A cabin cruiser owned by a Baltimore police officer was stolen last night from an Inner Harbor marina and apparently set ablaze near the opposite shore, authorities reported.

The owner -- tactical Officer Michael Stefanowitz -- had been at work when the 28-foot Bayliner, valued at about $58,000, was stolen from the Harborview Marina off Key Highway.

Two men on board acted like they were having trouble with the boat, according to police, and enlisted another boater to tow them near the harbor's north shore by the Ferry Bar Marina about 8:40 p.m. Then they jumped out and fled as the boat burst into flames.

The boat was destroyed despite the efforts of city firefighters.

Officials said an electrical malfunction that froze the Hanover Street Bridge in an open position did not delay the arrival of firefighting equipment, but left a fire battalion chief stuck in traffic.

The old drawbridge, which is undergoing renovation, had been opened to allow the passage of a tall sailboat and froze inches short of closing. Officials said repairs were completed within 50 minutes.

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