Reform school policy revisionThe state is revising...

Maryland Newswatch

September 04, 1992

MARYLAND STATE — Reform school policy revision

The state is revising guidelines for a new reform school in the northern Frederick County community of Sabillasville to assure area residents that no murderers, arsonists, sex offenders or juveniles convicted of manslaughter will be sent to the school.

Joe Newman, deputy secretary for the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services, met Wednesday night with about 250 angry residents to discuss provisions of the state's $11 million contract with Youth Services International, an Owings Mills company that will run the school, which is to open Sept. 21.

Residents Ron and Leura Sulchek had charged last week that the contract allowed for violent offenders and provided a program for sex offenders.

Mr. Newman said that youths convicted of murder, rape, manslaughter, arson and sex crimes would not be sent to the school, but that youths convicted of drug offenses, shootings, stabbings and crimes involving a handgun could be housed there.

The Sulcheks also charged that the contract allowed 185 juvenile offenders to be at the school, instead of the 60 to 90 the state previously had said. Mr. Newman said that the population could grow to about 180 juvenile offenders, but only with additional approval.

A Queenstown man accused of causing a June accident on the Bay Bridge that killed three people will not face felony charges, authorities say.

Instead, Queen Anne's County officials obtained summonses charging Thomas Gaudreau, 65, with negligent driving and traveling in the wrong lane -- traffic counts that carry a maximum penalty of $165 in fines.

"There's no evidence to bring manslaughter or [other] charges," said Bob Williams, an investigator for the Queen Anne's County state's attorney's office. "It was a mistake."

The June 17 accident killed retired Navy Capt. Anthony J. Rubino, 77, and a Florida couple, John and Virginia Quinn, both 66.

The accident occurred when Mr. Gaudreau, westbound on the bridge, pulled his vehicle into a lane reserved for eastbound traffic. When he realized his mistake, he swerved back into the westbound lane, sideswiping Captain Rubino's car, which slammed head on into an oncoming car.

Maryland is one of six states that will receive $75,000 grants to come up with plans for restructuring foster care programs.

Up to five of those states then will receive $2.5 million to implement their ideas, Douglas W. Nelson, executive director of the Annie E. Casey Foundation in Greenwich, Conn., announced yesterday.

The other states to receive planning grants are Alabama, Georgia, New Mexico, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Baltimore City:

Unable to resolve patient-care and administrative problems cited by state health inspectors, the owners of Autumn Gardens Nursing Home in West Baltimore have agreed to close down operations today.

Tori Leonard, a spokeswoman for the state health department, said yesterday that state personnel will assist in transferring the 34 remaining patients from the Poplar St. home to other facilities. The transfers should be completed today.

"We're not shutting them down," Ms. Leonard said. "They did this voluntarily."

Maryland health officials banned new admissions to Autumn Gardens June 23 and moved to revoke its license after inspectors reported evidence of inadequate care and commingling of residents' money with the home's operating accounts.

Anne Arundel County:

An Annapolis organization wants county residents to choose school board members and decide which schools their children attend.

"What we need here is local control," said Mark Parenti, executive director of Maryland Save Our Schools Inc. "Our organization is dissatisfied with the current [school] board because it does not address real problems and it does not respond to community concerns. "

Almost half of the state's counties elect their school boards. Nationwide, 93 percent of all school boards are elected, Mr. Parenti said.

Carroll County:

Carroll: Using information from a tip, the Carroll County Drug ++ Task Force arrested three Westminster residents and a New Windsor man Monday on charges of possession of cocaine and related offenses, police reported.

The task force was given the description of a car and its tag number and was told its occupants would be carrying an undisclosed amount of crack cocaine, said Sgt. John Burton, supervisor of the task force.

Police spotted a Ford Mustang with that license number about 11 p.m. on Md. 140 near Center Street. After the car had been stopped by police, a drug-sniffing police dog alerted officers to the presence of a controlled dangerous substance, said Sergeant Burton.

A search of the vehicle revealed eight "baggies" of crack cocaine, he said.

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