Juvenile trial urged for suspect in shooting

February 07, 1996

A 16-year-old Westminster boy who is accused of shooting a Woodlawn man on Union Street in August should be tried as a juvenile because of his learning disabilities and emotional problems, his attorney said yesterday.

Defense attorney Alfred Nance also said during a hearing at which he sought to return the case to juvenile jurisdiction that insurance problems have prevented Umar Abdul-Basir from completing drug treatment programs.

The teen-ager was charged as an adult in August with assault with intent to murder, use of a handgun in a felony, maiming with intent to disfigure, and assault and battery.

"We are here questioning whether he is a man or a child," Mr. Nance said. "He is skinny, bony and slightly tall. But we have to take that in the context of him being confined with people that are older and much more cruel, in a situation where he becomes the meat and the prey."

Witnesses said yesterday that the youth has learning disabilities, including dyslexia and an IQ of 79 to 88. He also uses alcohol and marijuana and can be violent when frustrated, witnesses said.

Prosecutors argued that the teen-ager has rejected many opportunities for counseling and support.

He walked off without leave from the Woodbourne residential treatment program in Baltimore and didn't complete counseling at Junction, a drug treatment program in Westminster.

Police have said that five shots were fired by a teen-ager on Union Street at 11:30 p.m. Aug. 22. Michael Corprew, 20, was wounded in the chest.

Circuit Judge Luke K. Burns Jr. said he will decide in the next few weeks whether the case should be returned to juvenile court.

Finksburg house blaze was arson, officials say

A fire Sunday that heavily damaged a house in the 1400 block of Blackfoot Court in Finksburg was the work of an arsonist, state fire officials said yesterday.

No one was injured in the 6:30 a.m. blaze, which was brought under control within 45 minutes by units from seven volunteer fire companies.

The property owner, Patti Maddox, her daughter and three grandchildren were out of town visiting relatives when the fire broke out, causing damage estimated at $150,000.

A reward of up to $5,000 is being offered for information leading to the arrest of the person who set the fire. The Arson Hot Line is (800) 492-7529.

Police

Westminster: Two students at East Middle School reported to police that someone stole their bicycles parked outside the Longwell Avenue school Thursday. Each loss was estimated at $200.

Westminster: A woman told police that someone broke the side window of her vehicle, opened the hood and cut a wire to the engine while it was parked near her home in the 100 block of E. Main St. on Saturday. The damage was estimated at $350.

Westminster: A Churchville man reported to police that someone stole the canvas top to his vehicle while it was parked at Western Maryland College Friday. The loss was estimated at $300.

Westminster: A West Main Street man told police Saturday that someone took an air conditioner from outside his building. The loss was estimated at $2,000.

Westminster: A Hampstead man told police that someone smashed the rear window of his vehicle that was parked at Cranberry Mall Saturday. The damage was estimated at $150.

Westminster: A New Jersey man told police that someone removed the battery from his vehicle that was parked at Western Maryland College Sunday. The loss was estimated at $45.

Westminster: A Sykesville woman told police that someone took her 1989 Acura Integra while it was parked at Wal-Mart Sunday. The loss was estimated at $5,000.

Fire

Finksburg: Gamber, Reese and Westminster responded to a chimney fire at 10:19 a.m. Saturday in the 2600 block of Jeffrey Lori Drive. The units were out 75 minutes.

Reese: Reese, Hampstead, Westminster, Gamber, Lineboro, Manchester and Arcadia of Baltimore County responded to a house fire at 6:38 a.m. Sunday in the 1400 block of Blackfoot Court. The units were out four hours and 31 minutes. Gamber transferred to Reese, Pleasant Valley transferred to Westminster, Manchester transferred to Hampstead and Sykesville transferred to Gamber.

Westminster: Westminster and Reese responded to a house fire at 2:49 a.m. Monday on East Main Street. The units were out 15 minutes.

Westminster: Westminster reponded to a fire of unknown origin at 5:55 a.m. Sunday at Chase Street and Bond Street. The units were out 11 minutes.

Westminster: Westminster and Reese responded at 9:39 p.m. Saturday to a fire alarm in the 400 block of Englar Road. The units were out 25 minutes.

Westminster: Westminster, Reese, Pleasant Valley and Union Bridge responded to an apartment fire at 11:08 p.m. Saturday in the first block of Charles St. The units were out 36 minutes.

Tip Line

If you have information for the Central report, call Donna Engle at 751-7930 during the day or leave a message on the tip line.

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