A Look Back At 1991

January 05, 1992


Missing Mussari: Kenneth F. Mussari, Carroll's longtime school personnel director and a former English teacher, dies on a tripto Florida, where he and his family had traveled to see Penn State play in the Blockbuster Bowl. The makeup of the current school system staff is the contribution of the 56-year-old Mussari, who was involved in recruiting, recommending and processing applications for the past 14 years.

Police charge man: State police arrest William Howard Russell of Spring Mills Road and charge him in connection with a string of daytime burglaries in North Carroll. The 20-year-old, who is being held on$200,000 bond, is charged with 15 counts of daytime burglary, 15 counts of breaking and entering, 13 counts of theft, 12 counts of breaking and entering with intent to commit a felony and four counts of destruction of property, court records show. Police say the burglaries have resulted in the loss of more than $29,000 in cash, jewelry, guns and electronics equipment; investigators are still trying to locate the stolen property.

A corny ending: County farmers tally up an above-average yield for corn for the second straight year after numerousdroughts during the 1980s. Average yields are estimated to be around125 bushels per acre, the same as 1989, says David Greene, agriculture science extension agent. "The yields are pretty good," he notes. "Water and timely rains helped -- rain has more to do with the corn crop than any other single factor."

Chemicals alarm neighbors: Though assured by health officials that chemicals found in the home of a Gaither man who died three weeks ago pose little risk, neighbors reactangrily to the news and remain concerned that the material contaminated their own properties. County and state health officials tell morethan 50 residents at a meeting that they have seen no evidence of any radiation hazards or any leakage or dumping of chemicals kept by Phillip Small in his Patapsco Road basement and shed. But residents remain skeptical and want their land and water tested for the chemicals,which include corrosives, flammable gases and liquids and low-level radioactive materials, which Small had stored for several years in the hopes of one day starting a chemistry lab.

Citizens hire tree whiz: Concerned over the fate of trees in the path of the East Main Street renovation project, Westminster residents hire an urban forestry consultant to make recommendations to save them. Chris Cowles of Steve Clark Associates, a nationally known urban forestry consulting firmbased in Prince George's County, says, "I'm not here to take sides, just to look at the trees and the plans and figure out what's involved." His $500 fee was collected by anonymous donors.

CCC gets busy:With a downturn in the economy, officials at Carroll Community College expect an upswing in enrollment. And they haven't been disappointed; enrollment for the spring semester is up about 45 percent from last year. There are 155 more full-time and 301 more part-time students registered; so far a total of 1501 students have registered for the spring semester.

25-year mark: Delegate Richard C. Matthews, R-Carroll, and Sen Charles H. Smelser, D-Carroll, Frederick, Howard, begin their 25th year of service to the county in the state legislature. The two politicians have been able to survive so long because they understand their constituents, respond to them promptly and agree with them philosophically, say fellow Carroll delegates, political observersand business associates.

Prison after all: A 24-year-old Westminster man -- whose name is being withheld to protect the identity of the victim -- will have to serve eight years in prison after violating his probation. Judge Luke K. Burns Jr. reinstates his original sentence, handed down after the man was found guilty of beating his then 8-month-old daughter in the face and head. Last January, the child's mother told city police that she suspected her husband had abused theirdaughter again, and a doctor concluded bruises on the 2-year-old child were not accidental. Circuit Judge Raymond Beck sentenced the man to serve one year but later reduced that sentence to six months. But when the man appeared before Burns in November on charges he had violated his probation, the judge said he had been given enough chances.

School board reorganizes: The county Board of Education elects John D. Myers Jr. president, replacing T. Edward Lippy, who chose not torun for re-election last fall after serving on the board for almost two decades. The five-member board elects Cheryl A. McFalls vice president, succeeding Carolyn L. Scott.

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