Undercover officers nab robbery suspect
Undercover detectives posing as pizza deliverymen nabbed a 22-year-old Columbia man who tried to hold them up late Thursday night as they delivered to a Columbia house.
Bullets were fired and a state police helicopter was called in before police arrested Stephen Scott Santos, of the 6400 block of Elffolk Terrace. Santos is being charged with assault with a deadly weapon, robbery and weapons violations and is being held on $250,000 bond at the county detention center.
Police said a detective posing as a Pizz-A-Boli's deliveryman was arriving at a house at the 5900 block of Camelback Lane when a masked man approached him and demanded money. Undercover detectives at the scene shot at the man after he pointed a handgun at them, police said. No one was injured.
The man fled into a nearby wooded area and was arrested after a state police helicopter tracked him with a heat sensor.
Police are looking into possibilities that Santos may have been involved in about half-dozen other armed robberies of pizza deliverymen in east Columbia in the past few weeks.
City man charged with break-in
Police have charged a Baltimore City man with breaking and entering a Columbia doctor's office.
Police arrested 40-year-old Paul L. Carroll Tuesday night after they responded to an alarm and saw him fleeing from an office building at the 5900 block of Harpers Farm Road.
Police accused Carroll, of the 1900 block of Frederick Road, of entering the doctor's office through a drywall. Police said they found specks of paint and drywall in his hair and took his clothing -- which was also covered -- for evidence.
Teen charged with damaging cars
The sound of breaking glass and the heroics of a citizen led to the arrest of a Columbia teen-ager who was accused of smashing car windows at an Ellicott City Acura dealership Thursday night.
The citizen, a nearby resident, called police to tell them he heard breaking glass. He had detained the 17-year-old teen-ager by the time police arrived.
Police said windows on about 25 Acura cars and Ford pick-up trucks were smashed on a lot at the 8500 block of U.S. 40. The pick-up trucks were owned by a nearby Ford dealership and were stored there as overflow, according to police.
The teen-ager was released to his parent's custody and was charged with destruction of property and possession of Molotav cocktails.
Police found two Molotov cocktails -- beer bottles filled with gas and wicks -- in a red Toyota Corolla parked nearby.
Possession of a Molotov cocktail is a misdemeanor charge that carries up to five years' imprisonment and a $2,500 fine.
Police are looking for two other suspects they say were also involved in the incident.
Police also discovered four cars with windows smashed at the Bethany 40 Center, four miles west of the dealership. They are investigating to determine if the incidents are related.
Baltimore man arrested in robbery
Police arrested 28-year-old Broderick R. Bennett of Baltimore Thursday in connection with last month's holdup of First Quality Cleaners on the 9200 block of U.S. 40. Bennett is a former employee of the Ellicott City business.
Owners Lynn and Raymond Ra were opening their shop when two men entered through an unlocked door -- one of them covering his face and throat with a white towel or cloth, according to charging documents.
The masked man grabbed Lynn Ra around the throat and forced an object to her back, asking, "Where's the money?" She told him it was in her purse and led him to the front of the store, where he took $149 from her purse and $200 from the cash register.
Both men then fled.
Police traced Bennett from a list of former employees and from fingerprints found on the cash register after the robbery.
Bennett's fingerprints were on file in connection with another robbery seven years ago in Baltimore County, according to charging documents. His right index finger matched the prints found on a plastic tray of the cash register, police said.
Police charged Bennett, of the 200 block of Stonecraft Road, with theft, robbery with a deadly weapon and assault with intent to rob.
Here are other crimes reported to Howard County police:
10200 block of Wincopin Circle: Someone tried to steal a 1992 Toyota Tercel by tampering with the ignition early Tuesday evening.
9300 block of Snowden River Parkway: Someone smashed a glass door and stole a cash register overnight Tuesday at the Photo Gallery, Inc.
6000 block of Foreland Garth: A maroon 1988 Plymouth Vista that was stolen by a hitch-hiker last week was recovered in Baltimore City Tuesday.
7100 block of Red Branch Road: A stolen 1987 Pontiac Trans Am was found Monday.
Dobbin Center Way parking lot: A 1986 Toyota 4-Runner was reported stolen at 12 a.m. Thursday from the Columbia Auto Park.
8900 block of Footed Ridge Road: Someone entered a home between 9:30 p.m. Wednesday and 7:15 a.m. Thursday and stole a television.