WESTMINSTER — A 16-year-old Backwoods Road boy who faced nine criminal charges, including attempted murder, burglary and armed robbery, pleaded guilty to armed robbery yesterday as part of a plea agreement with the State's Attorney's Office.
The remaining eight charges against Brian Myers were dropped in an agreement approved by Circuit Judge Raymond E.Beck.
Myers tried unsuccessfully last month to have his case heard in juvenile court.
State police charged Myers as an adult after two teen-agers held the family of Arthur and Janis Lockard at gunpoint in July, stole their car and led police on a high-speed chase.
A second youth was charged as a juvenile with armed robbery and burglary. His case was handled by the juvenile court.
A state police cruiser was rammed by a stolen car driven by Myers, police said. The officer and Myers were treated for minor injuries and released from Carroll County General Hospital.
Myers has been free on bail since the July 28 incident. Since then, court records show, he has received extensive psychiatric care, improved his grades, decided on a career and mended a troubled relationship he had with his father.
It was the psychiatric treatment and improvement in school and home that Myers and his attorney used in arguing to have his case heard in juvenile court.But Beck, in rejecting that request, said that while Myers' progressin the last several months was "impressive," it was not enough to erase the "horrendous" nature of the charges against him.
By agreeing to plead guilty to armed robbery, Myers could face up to 20 years in jail. A presentencing investigation was ordered.
Sentencing is scheduled for July 8, at which time the State's Attorney's Office willrequest that Myers be required to serve some time behind bars.
Assistant State's Attorney Kathi Hill, who is prosecuting the case, said that sentencing guidelines recommend incarceration of three to eight years.
MAN IS GUILTY OF ABUSE
WESTMINSTER -- A Hampstead man on Monday was convicted of abusing his teen-age daughter over a two-year period.
In an undisclosed plea agreement, the man had two sexual abuse charges and one assault charge dropped. The child abuse charge carries a possible sentence of 15 years in state prison.
According to court records, the man fondled his daughterbetween 1989 and 1991, when the child was between 12 and 14 years old.
The man, whose name is being withheld to protect the privacy ofthe child, repeated the activity about once or twice a week, court records show.
"I'm devastated," he told state police in September. "It will never happen again."
The man was arrested and charged with child abuse, third- and fourth-degree sex offenses and with battery. The charges stem from a letter the man's daughter wrote to her mother after an argument between the child and the mother.
Had the manbeen found guilty on all four counts, he could have faced a jail sentence of up to 26 years.
Sentencing is set for May 27.
ARMED ROBBERY TRIAL SET
WESTMINSTER -- The trial of an 18-year-old Ellicott City man charged in the September holdup of a Sykesville video store is expected to start today in Circuit Court.
But the trial of Nicholas Alexander Vennari isn't expected to last long, court papers say.
Court records show a plea agreement between Vennari's attorney -- Richard O'Connor of Ellicott City -- and the State's Attorney's Office. Details of the plea agreement were not available yesterday.
Vennari was charged Sept. 10 with armed robbery, robbery, assault, conspiracy and theft in connection with the Sept. 6 holdup of Show Time Video Inc. According to court records, a clerk atthe video store was held up with what turned out to be a toy gun. More than $350 was stolen from the store. Court records show that Vennari and a friend, Kenneth Ray Perkins, split the stolen money.
Court records say Vennari was the driver of the getaway car, a white FordMustang convertible.
Vennari has been held in the Howard County Detention Center since September.
Here is a compilation of some of the activities in Carroll courts:
Philip Miller: Fines must be paid in 60 days, Circuit Judge Luke K. Burns Jr., violation of probation on a home improvement without a license conviction, March 18.
Rodney Parks: Fourteen days Carroll County Detention Center, probation terminated, Circuit Judge Luke K. Burns Jr., violation of probation on a battery conviction, March 16.
Lawrence Rentsel: One year Carroll County Detention Center, five years probation, first two years in the Drinking Drivers Monitoring Program, CircuitJudge Luke K. Burns Jr., driving while intoxicated, March 17.
Bruce Lecuyer: Five years Department of Corrections, all but 2 years suspended, three years supervised probation, Circuit Judge Luke K. BurnsJr., theft, March 18.
Patricia Lease: One year Carroll County Detention Center, five years supervised probation, Circuit Judge RaymondE. Beck Sr., forgery, March 23.
Glenn Saylor: One year Departmentof Corrections, two days Carroll County Detention Center, three years probation, Drinking Drivers Monitoring Program, Circuit Judge Raymond E. Beck Sr., two drinking-while-intoxicated convictions, March 23.
David Swartzbaugh: Two years Department of Corrections, all but six months at the Carroll County Detention Center, Circuit Judge Raymond E. Beck Sr., possession of controlled dangerous substances, March 23.