Convict's 2nd chance is at risk Traffic stop finds arsenal in car

October 17, 1992|By Sheridan Lyons | Sheridan Lyons,Staff Writer

Last November, after being convicted for pointing a gun at three Baltimore County police officers, James Thomas "Todd" Cusick, 33, begged for another chance and got it.

But yesterday, while he was driving to his work-release job, police stopped him and found what they said is a small arsenal that includes guns from a Harford County burglary.

Cusick, of 200 Courthouse Court in Towson, was charged with driving with a suspended license, a handgun violation, possession of deadly weapons, grand theft and altering the identification number of a handgun, said county police spokesman E. Jay Miller.

Cusick had been sentenced on July 31, 1991, to three years of an eight-year sentence on assault and attempted murder charges. The sentence was later reduced, and he was put on work-release, where he worked as a farm laborer in northern Baltimore County.

A passenger in the light blue AMC, Harry Blizzard, 41, of Hampstead, was charged with a handgun violation, possession of deadly weapons, and grand theft. Mr. Blizzard also was on work-release.

Cusick was arrested at 5:30 a.m. yesterday, after Officer Patrick Stonko stopped his car on York Road near Roundridge Road because it had a missing headlight.

After finding that Cusick's driver's license was suspended, Officer Stonko saw a knife on the back seat's floor and the butt of a firearm in the car's hatchback trunk. Police searched the car and found two daggers, a loaded .22-caliber revolver, a .45-caliber semiautomatic Smith & Wesson with an ammunition clip next to it between the front seats and, in the hatchback, a loaded .22-caliber Mossberg rifle, a Marlin 9mm rifle, a Glenfield .22-caliber rifle, and a 16-inch rifle, Mr. Miller said.

A check with the Harford County sheriff revealed that the Marlin, the Smith & Wesson and knives similar to those found yesterday had been reported stolen in an Aug. 14 burglary.

In May 1991, Cusick was convicted of three counts of attempted second-degree murder and other charges, said Assistant State's Attorney A. Dean Stocksdale. Cusick also was found guilty of possessing a handgun stolen from a Delta, Pa., gun shop where he once worked.

The case began as a Valentine's Day 1990 assault against his pregnant girlfriend whose head he banged against a car outside Cherry's Inn in the 21600 block of Middletown Road. When a bouncer tried to stop the assault, Cusick pointed a handgun at the man's head, then his heart before running away, Mr. Stocksdale said.

Police later surrounded him at the trailer of a friend in Freeland. Cusick came out, carrying a shotgun and pointed it at three officers. They fired, wounding him several times.

The health problems that resulted from the shooting were the primary reason Cusick asked Judge J. William Hinkel, who had sentenced him, to reduce his sentence. His attorney, Warren Mix, also cited Cusick's lack of a criminal record, his baby, a waiting job, character references and his remorse. State prosecutors opposed the reduction.

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