A 19-year-old Columbia man who menaced a mechanic with a hand grenade led police on a chase from Parkton through Baltimore and into Anne Arundel County yesterday morning, police said. The pursuit ended in Riviera Beach with a car crash, a helicopter pursuit and a canine search -- but no injury or explosion.
The three-hour incident began when a car broke down shortly before midnight on Interstate 83 near Parkton, said Baltimore County police spokesman Bill Toohey.
The driver called AAA for assistance, and a wrecker towed his 1997 Oldsmobile Bravada to the Parkton Exxon in the 19000 block of York Road, Toohey said. Once there, according to a Baltimore County police report, the man walked to a car belonging to Andrew Kohne, a mechanic at the station.
Kohne's 1990 Mercury Grand Marquis was running with the driver's door open while Kohne worked on the sound system in the trunk. The man got into the car, and Kohne told him to get out, police said.
The man "produced a hand grenade and threatened to pull the pin," a report said, and drove off toward Interstate 83 on York Road, eventually getting on I-83 southbound.
A second employee of the Exxon station, David Askren, followed the driver. Using his cellular phone, Askren called 911 as the two cars sped down the interstate. Baltimore County police began pursuing the stolen Mercury, and city police joined the pursuit, Toohey said. But the man didn't stop, and the officers eventually gave up the chase.
The driver continued into Anne Arundel County, where he came to the attention of an officer on Fort Smallwood Road near Energy Parkway.
Just after 2 a.m., Anne Arundel Police Officer Ervin Lemaster saw a 1990 Mercury driving erratically. He pulled the car over and asked the driver for his license and registration.
The driver reached under his shirt, as if looking for his license, but then drove off, police said. Lemaster followed him into Riviera Beach, where the Mercury left the roadway for a muddy field near Main and Atlanta avenues.
The car spun 180 degrees, turning toward Lemaster, according to Anne Arundel police, and hit the patrol car, causing minor damage.
After a 30-minute search of the area using police dogs and a helicopter, police said, the man was found hiding in a boat parked in the 100 block of Carroll Road.
The hand grenade was not found, according to Anne Arundel police.
Frederick A. H. Peoples, of the 6000 block of Laurel Wreath Way, was arrested and charged with armed carjacking, using a deadly weapon with intent to injure, felony theft, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, and several counts of assault and traffic FTC violations. He was being held in the Anne Arundel County Detention Center on $150,000 bail, police said.