Justice not served, woman saysNellie Thomas returned home...

MARYLAND NEWSWATCH

September 11, 1992

BALTIMORE CITY — Justice not served, woman says

Nellie Thomas returned home one evening last February to find her stove's unlighted gas burners on and her 76-year-old mother tied to a bed. Although a 35-year-old home nurse was sentenced yesterday to 14 years in prison for attempted murder, Ms. Thomas does not think justice had been served.

"She tried to take my mother's life and mine, too. Fourteen years is not enough," the East Baltimore woman said. Explaining why she thinks home nurse Rosa Mae Canty tried to kill her, as well as her mother, by filling the house with gas, Ms. Thomas said, "She knows I always come in my house with a cigarette stuck in my mouth."

Canty, a longtime family friend who had cared for Fanne Buey for about a year before the incident, has said that a man and woman who came to the house to demand repayment of a loan and to package drugs "took control" and turned on the gas with the pilot light out. She said they stole a television set. Police said the phone cord had been cut.

But a discrepancy emerged in Canty's accounts of when she left the house in the 1700 block of Darley Ave. And it remains unclear why the mystery couple, who have not been found, would seek to kill Ms. Buey. For that matter, no one could say yesterday why Canty would want to kill the elderly woman.

Baltimore Circuit Judge Clifton J. Gordy sentenced Canty to life in prison, with all but 14 years suspended. Canty, of the 2300 block of Harford Road, pleaded guilty in June to attempted first-degree murder in exchange for a life sentence with all but 12 to 20 years suspended.

Before being sentenced to life in prison yesterday after his second murder trial, longtime crime figure Dominic J. "Crowbar" Carozza raised his hand and said, "I object, your honor. I didn't kill anybody."

Carozza, 60, accused prosecutors of using him as a "political football" and lying about his background as a city public works supervisor. "This is a vindictive attitude," he said.

A Baltimore Circuit Court jury had convicted Carozza in July of conspiring to murder Russell Charles Baker, 42, a heroin addict

found slain in 1990. Carozza's co-defendant, Robert J. "Tattoo -- Bobby" Vizzini, 28, also was convicted of conspiracy, but the jury was dismissed before reaching a verdict on murder charges against the men after a juror admitted reading an article about the case.

OC Judge David Ross sentenced Vizzini yesterday to life in prison.

*

A 38-year-old Pepsi Cola company employee was killed last night when the car he was driving on the rain-slicked Wilkens Avenue bridge above the Gwynns Falls crashed into the back of a truck, city police said.

Roy Alexander Ennis, of the 2300 block of Madison Ave., Baltimore, was apparently returning home from work at 10:25 p.m. and was driving a 1983 Nissan across the bridge in the 2700 block of Wilkens Ave. when he crashed into the rear of a parked truck, said Officer John Dodge of the city police traffic division.

The car, said the officer, went under the truck, trapping the driver between the bottom of the truck and the top of his car.

Officer Dodge said Mr. Ennis, was pronounced dead at the scene from multiple injuries.

Maryland State

More than 200 volunteers are expected to turn out tomorrow for the fifth annual cleanup of the Assateague Island beach near Ocean City.

Volunteers are to gather at the northern parking lot at the Assateague National Seashore between 9:30 a.m. and 10 a.m.

Each should bring a picnic lunch, something to drink, a hat, sunscreen, comfortable shoes and insect repellent.

Transportation to and from the beach will be provided, so would-be volunteers should call Mr. Walbeck, coordinator of the cleanup, in advance at (410) 821-0305. In case of rain, the cleanup will be held Sunday.

Baltimore County

A Towson man who was shot in the head during what appeared to be a drug-related incident in the 700 block of McCabe Ave. in the city Thursday morning died several hours later at the Maryland Shock Trauma Center without regaining consciousness, city police say.

Pronounced dead at 5:20 a.m. yesterday was John Pittman, 32, of the 500 block of Epsom Road.

In the first six years of its program to test prospective employees

for drugs, Baltimore County has tested more than 10,000 people, of whom 172 have failed, and has watched the failure rate steadily decline, according to a report released yesterday.

When testing began in May 1986, about 3 percent of the people tested failed the urine test, said Michael Gimbel, head of the county's Office of Substance Abuse. Since then, less than 1 percent of those tested have failed.

Marijuana turned up most frequently in the tests, followed by cocaine, prescription drugs and other narcotics, he said.

Carroll County

The trial of a man charged in the slaying of a Melrose store owner will be moved outside the county.

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