Patapsco Excavating to appear in dumping case today

January 26, 1996|By Consella A. Lee | Consella A. Lee,SUN STAFF

M. Edward Suddreth and his company, Patapsco Excavating Inc., are to be in Baltimore City District Court today to answer charges of illegally dumping solid waste.

The state Department of the Environment (MDE) brought three criminal counts of commercial littering against Mr. Suddreth and his company.

On three separate occasions in 1994, state environmental inspectors saw solid waste dumped at a site in the 600 block of W. Patapsco Ave., court documents said.

Each count carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $25,000 fine. The case is scheduled to be heard at 1:30 p.m. by Judge Mary Ellen T. Rinehardt.

For years, Belle Grove residents in Brooklyn Park complained about noisy trucks and dirt and grime blowing from a 500-foot dirt pile near their homes.

"You could see Harbor Hospital. Now you can't see nothing but a little mountain and trucks sitting up there," said Dolores Impallaria, president of the Belle Grove Road Improvement Association.

The 32-acre "clean" landfill in Baltimore City, which is not allowed to accept solid waste, is separated from Brooklyn Park by the Patapsco River and the Harbor Tunnel Thruway.

Over the years, Patapsco Excavating has received numerous complaints from the MDE for accepting unpermitted waste. In July 1994, MDE issued a stop work order and fined the company $18,000 for accepting solid waste.

Mr. Suddreth did not return telephone calls. Max H. Lauten, lawyer for Patapsco Excavating, declined to discuss the case.

According to court documents, state officials made their first unannounced visit to Patapsco Excavating on March 23, 1994. That day, they found a hot water heater, shredded rubber, pieces of wood, wire, torn discarded insulation material, plastic bags and other debris -- items for which Mr. Suddreth did not have a permit.

On July 20, 1994, state officials surveyed the property from the air and filmed tractor trailers dumping solid waste at the site. Bulldozers covered the waste with dirt, the court documents said.

The next day, state officials conducted video surveillance from a Brooklyn Park neighborhood of Patapsco Excavating, court documents said.

Several trucks were videotaped dumping loads of solid waste at the landfill, and bulldozers also buried this material, the documents said.

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