Md. escapee awaits extradition

January 19, 1992

An Essex man who escaped from a state mental hospital last month is awaiting extradition from Idaho, where police used tear gas to flush him from an apartment to end a nine-hour stand-off, authorities reported.

Joseph Chester Palzcynski, 23, of the 1200 block of Bridge Crossing Road, was being held at a jail in Gooding, Idaho. Police there said he used a 9mm handgun to hold a SWAT team at bay Friday.

Palzcynski, a parolee, had been the subject of an investigation by Baltimore County and state police into reports that he had threatened to kill police officers and had bought firearms since his Dec. 16 escape from the Spring Grove Hospital Center in Catonsville.

Palzcynski was committed to the mental hospital after being charged last month with assaulting his 17-year-old girlfriend, said Detective Sgt. Jim Ballard, of the state police Golden Ring barracks.

After his escape, police received reports that the man had bought an assault rifle in Florida and was threatening to kill a Baltimore County police officer and his family. Also, the man spoke of killing other police officers, the detective said.

"He had threatened to go into the parking lot of a Dunkin' Donuts and keep shooting until he shot a cop," Sergeant Ballard said. "He had told his friends he wanted to go out in a bang of glory."

He said police conducted round-the-clock surveillances at three spots near Essex, but narrowly missed apprehending the man.

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