Police arrest three teens Youngsters charged in tire slashings in neighborhood

'You feel less secure'

Chartridge target of vandals' attacks twice this year

March 20, 1998|By Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan | Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan,SUN STAFF

County police arrested three Severna Park teen-agers Wednesday night on charges of slashing the tires of vehicles in their neighborhood last weekend.

The youths, a 14-year-old from Chartridge and a 14- and a 15-year-old from nearby Carrollton Manor, were charged with destruction of property, said Edward Stratton, the Eastern District detective who headed the investigation. All three were charged as juveniles.

As of yesterday, the suspects had been charged with one to three counts of destruction of property. But Stratton said that police plan to charge them with additional counts by today.

Vandalism attacks happen, "but it's uncommon to have that many at one time," Stratton said. Stratton said three boys were walking around the Chartridge community just after dark Friday when they began randomly slashing tires of parked vehicles with two small knives.

He said he did not know how many tires were slashed Friday but that 34 vehicles were damaged and two porch lights broken within a half-mile over the weekend.

"In one case a neighbor saw these kids walking and saw them stop by one victim's van, then he heard air coming out," Stratton said. "When he confronted them on the street, they turned around and walked away."

Stratton said the suspects did not offer a motive. He said they have been released to their parents' custody and are expected to attend a hearing before juvenile authorities next month.

The arrests are a relief to residents, who were shaken by the slashings.

Lisa Domshick, a three-year resident of Chartridge, said vandals burned mailboxes and spray-painted cars in January. Late last year small trees were uprooted.

"It affects the general feeling of safety in our neighborhood," Domshick said. "Even if it doesn't happen to you, you feel less secure."

Domshick, whose car window was smashed over the weekend, said the police officer who took her complaint told her it took a half hour to get to her home because neighbors kept flagging him down to report car damage.

Capt. Harry Collier, the Eastern District commander, said recent vandalism in Chartridge prompted him to assign two officers and a crime analyst to help with Stratton's investigation. Usually, one detective is assigned to cases of destruction of property.

Residents "have been victimized on two separate occasions now," Collier said. "If it were my community, I wouldn't want it to happen again."

Stratton said he is investigating whether the three suspects are linked to the January incidents, in which police logged 20 complaints of burned mailboxes or damaged cars.

Pub Date: 3/20/98

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.