Drug dealer's posh motor home becomes mobile police precinct BALTIMORE COUNTY

December 23, 1992|By Glenn Small | Glenn Small,Staff Writer

Officer Carl Carlee was investigating a report of a missing 36-year-old Parkville woman yesterday and wanted to discuss the case with his superiors.

He didn't have far to travel.

His bosses were waiting in the kitchenette of a 33-foot Southwind motor home -- once the prize of a suspected drug dealer, but now a mobile police precinct. Yesterday, it was parked in the 7800 block of Harford Road, the heart of the Parkville business district.

The White Marsh officer made the short drive to the precinct and reported his findings: The woman had been depressed the past couple of weeks; she drove off Monday morning and hasn't been seen since.

"We are afraid, and her boyfriend is afraid, that she might do something to herself," said Officer Carlee.

He said police are looking for a 1989 Ford Tempo with Maryland license tags ADA 685. Anyone with information should call 887-5000.

"This is how we want it to work," said Capt. Jeffrey Caslin, commander of the White Marsh precinct. "This is operating just like a regular precinct."

Captain Caslin brought the "Mobile Community Precinct" to Parkville in a show of support for area residents and business people concerned about police presence in their community.

Earlier this year, the old Parkville precinct was merged into the White Marsh precinct. Also there has been more awareness of crime in Parkville, said Captain Caslin.

"We had the [Valley] gun shop break-in a few weeks ago," he said. "There's just a heightened awareness of crime in this community."

Bill Bissell, president of the Parkville Business Association, said he was glad to see the mobile precinct.

"It's a goodwill gesture on the part of the police," he said. "They're planning to do this every couple months."

Debra Boisvert, senior customer service representative for Blazer Financial Services, said she was too busy to go outside and talk with officers. Still, she liked the fact that the mobile precinct had arrived.

"There's been a lot more crime around here," she said. "So, it makes us feel a lot better knowing it's out there. And I also think it's good that they took it away from a drug dealer, too."

Mr. Bissell, who owns Chesapeake Auction Co., was the first person to make a complaint with the mobile precinct. He reported a suspicious vehicle to Officer Jim Lynch.

"It was an unlocked car parked behind his building, with temporary tags," said Officer Lynch. "It wasn't stolen. But it didn't feel right to him, so we checked it out."

County police obtained the motor home during a 1990 marijuana investigation. Police keep it because the old owners bought it with the profits from their drug ring, said Captain Caslin.

The motor home is in mint condition. It's clean inside and well-appointed, with a color TV, videocassette recorder and stereo system with compact disc player. The bedroom has been converted into a small office. The vehicle will operate throughout the county as a mobile precinct.

To help with parking, police mounted a video camera on back of the motor home. The camera feeds the picture to a small screen mounted on the --board.

Yesterday, Captain Caslin and his officers spent most of their time dealing with news reporters and didn't get to walk through the business district.

Next time, he said, police will spend their time dealing with residents and business people.

"It will be fun for us, and it's forming a partnership with the community," he said.

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