Theft suspect is arrested in Westminster bar

January 05, 1993|By Amy L. Miller | Amy L. Miller,Staff Writer

A man who allegedly stole a Westminster woman's purse and wallet was arrested and charged a few hours later, after he apparently celebrated his new-found $22 fortune by spending it in a local bar, city police reported yesterday.

The suspect, identified as Joseph Donahue Woodyard, 24, of the 9800 block of Bethesda Church Road in Damascus, Montgomery County, was arrested outside Maggie's Restaurant by police officers who reported they found him in the restaurant's bar about three hours after the theft Dec. 30.

District Court records show that Mr. Woodyard spent the night in the Carroll County Detention Center because he was too drunk to see a court commissioner.

Mr. Woodyard still was being held last night at the detention center in lieu of a $2,000 bond on charges of breaking and entering, theft of under $300, disturbing the peace with profanity and disorderly intoxication.

Court documents said Mr. Woodyard allegedly was seen running out of 59 Charles St. in Westminster by the victim, Marice Meluh, as she was returning home about 5:30 p.m. Dec. 30.

Ms. Meluh told police that she saw the suspect run to the rear of 66 Church St. Upon entering her home, Ms. Meluh said, she noticed that her purse and wallet were missing, and that $22 in cash and other items were gone.

Court records said that Ms. Meluh and two other residents identified a scarf left at the scene as the suspect's.

Ms. Meluh identified Mr. Woodyard by name.

About three hours later, at 8:38 p.m., Westminster Police Officer Eric Davis found Mr. Woodyard inside Maggie's Restaurant at Green Street and Washington Road, and asked him to step outside.

Court records indicate that Mr. Woodyard went out willingly, but once he was outside he began to yell obscenities at Officer Davis loud enough for people in a nearby car to hear as the officer arrested him.

Officer Davis' police report said Mr. Woodyard had a strong odor of alcohol on his breath and that his eyes were bloodshot and glassy.

Police also reported that they found a credit card belonging to Ms. Meluh when they searched Mr. Woodyard.

Court records said Mr. Woodyard was taken to the Carroll County Detention Center until he became sober enough to understand the court proceedings.

He did not cooperate with detention officials and was still intoxicated at 7:30 a.m. the next morning, the records said.

He was taken before a court commissioner at 11 a.m. that day, and the $2,000 bond was set at his bail review hearing yesterday.

A trial date was scheduled for Feb. 5.

Detention Center officials said yesterday that Mr. Woodyard had been released on his own recognizance after spending Dec. 18 to Dec. 21 there on charges of breaking and entering, destruction of property and theft.

If he is convicted of the latest charges, Mr. Woodyard would face up to four years and 10 months in jail and/or a $1,600 fine.

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