A masked man with a gun robbed an Elkridge pizza restaurant of an undisclosed amount of cash Thursday night then sprayed Mace into the eyes of an employee, county police said.
The gunman entered the Little Caesar's Pizza shop, in the 6300 block of U.S. 1, shortly after the store's 10 p.m. closing and ordered three employees to lie on the floor, police said.
After a few moments, the gunman ordered two of the employees intoa walk-in freezer and demanded that the manager hand over money fromthe register, police said.
The manager put the money into a bag and gave it to the man, who then sprayed the employee in the face withthe blinding chemical, police said.
Police said the employee was not seriously injured.
The gunman wore a ski mask, dark clothing and gloves.
rrests made at Waverly Winds
Seven people were arrested on cocaine charges this week at the Waverly Winds housing development in Columbia as part of a concentrated effort by county police torid the neighborhood of drug problems.
Three people were arrestedThursday night at the complex, located in the 5500 block of Cedar Lane, after narcotics officers approached a car and noticed a man attempting to swallow a bag containing a small amount of suspected cocaine, police said.
The man and two of his companions were charged withpossession of cocaine. They were identified by police as Travis L. Franklin, 25, of the 4900 block of Columbia Road in Columbia; James K.Williams, 25, of Seat Pleasant; and Shryce Renee Lockett, 27, of the5900 block of Turnabout Lane in Columbia.
On Wednesday night, narcotics officers seized 103 rocks of crack cocaine and arrested four people at the complex, police said.
Three people were arrested after they attempted to leave the parking lot in their car.
During a search of the suspects and the vehicle, police seized the crack cocaine, which has an estimated street value of $2,000, police said.
Arrested were Kerry M. Bethea, 22, and Frederick J. Tindell, 19, both ofno fixed address, and Louis A. Hayes, 28, of the 5900 block of Harper's Farm Road in Columbia.
Each was charged with cocaine distribution and was being held Friday on $5,000 bond at the Howard County Detention Center.
Another man, Bernard Richard Smith, 21, of the 7300block of Cedar Avenue in Jessup, was charged with possession of cocaine after police witnessed another apparent drug deal in the parking lot.
A small amount of cocaine was seized, police said.
Since October, when county police began a community policing program and stepped up narcotics enforcement at the Columbia subsidized housing projects of Waverly Winds, Roslyn Rise and Stevens Forest, 55 people havebeen arrested on drug charges.
RESIDENTIAL BURGLARIES FIT SIMILAR PATTERN
Seven residential burglaries in the western area of Howard County appear to be the work of a burglar who has a market for stolen jewelry, county police said.
Four of the burglaries have been committed this month in Sykesville -- in the 1000 block of Sunset Valley Road -- and the western portions of Ellicott City; in the 11600 blockof Vixen's Path, the 11600 block of Farside Road, and the 4300 blockof Cross Country Drive, police said.
The other three burglaries were reported last year, at two Glenelg homes on Ridgewood Drive and Royden Court, and in the 12000 block of Benson Branch Road in EllicottCity.
In all of the cases, the burglar has gained entry by breaking out a rear window or door, police said. The incidents have occurred primarily during weekdays, between 7:30 a.m. and 9 p.m.
Jewelry was taken from most of the homes. In two of the incidents, electronicequipment was taken, and a handgun was stolen from one of the residences, police said.
Anyone who notices a suspicious car or person in any of the neighborhoods where the crimes have occurred is asked tonotify county police.
Other crimes reported to Howard Countypolice:
5900 block Gales Lane: A 1991 Mazda Miata wasreported stolen at 7:15 a.m. Thursday from a residential area.
5200 block West Running Brook Road: A 1989 Nissan Sentra automoBile wasreported stolen at 6:55 a.m. Friday from a residential area.
10200 block Little Patuxent Parkway: A 1989 Chevrolet Blazer was reportedstolen at 6:35 a.m. Thursday from a residential area.
3600 block Morning View Court: Someone broke into a home sometime before 7 p.m. Wednesday and ransacked several bedrooms; apparentlynothing was taken.
4600 block Maydew Mews Way: A television, jewelry, and cash were stolen sometime before 11:58 p.m. Tuesday from a home entered through a kitchen window.
9000 block U.S. 40: A 1992 Plymouth Sundance was reported stolen at 4:54 p.m. Thursday from a residential area.
8200 block Sandy Court: A 24-foot 1989 Mack truck was reported stolen at 12:20 a.m. Thursday from a business area. The truck was later recovered in Baltimore.
8300 block Perri Drive: A 1989 Chevrolet van was reported stolen at 6:55 a.m. Thursday from a residential area.
14500 block McClintock Drive: Contracting equipment and tools were stolen sometime before 9:30 a.m. Tuesday from a shed.