In Baltimore City Teacher charged in sexual assault of...

CITY/COUNTY DIGEST

March 01, 2002|By FROM STAFF REPORTS

In Baltimore City

Teacher charged in sexual assault of 9-year-old girl

A teacher at a Catholic elementary school was charged yesterday with sexually assaulting a 9-year-old girl, the city state's attorney's office and church officials said.

David A. Czajkowski, 38, a fourth-grade teacher at St. Thomas Aquinas School in Hampden, was charged with child abuse, third- and fourth-degree sex offenses and second-degree assault, the state's attorney's office said. He is accused of putting his hand under the girl's shirt and rubbing her back and touching her chest through her shirt Feb. 12.

After interviewing witnesses at the school, detectives interrogated Czajkowski yesterday at police headquarters, where he acknowledged touching the girl and was arrested, according to a charging document filed in District Court. The teacher resides in the 3000 block of Bayonne Ave. in Hamilton.

Raymond P. Kempisty, a spokesman for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Baltimore, said the student reported the incident to the school. "A report was made to [the Department of Social Services] the same day, and the teacher was suspended the same day," he said.

Man's body discovered as firefighters tackle blaze

The body of an unidentified man was found last night by city firefighters battling a stubborn two-alarm blaze that extensively damaged a three-story rowhouse in the Carrollton Ridge section of Southwest Baltimore. The cause of death was to be determined at the state medical examiner's office, a Fire Department spokesman said.

Firefighters found the body shortly after 10 p.m. as they went from room to room, extinguishing flames whipped by a steady wind in what was first thought to be a vacant house in the 300 block of S. Payson St., said the spokesman, Lt. Michael Maybin.

Maybin said that a firefighter was treated for an injured arm, and that two adjoining dwellings had fire damage to their upper floors. Only one of them was occupied, and the people there escaped without injury, he added.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.

`Mister Rogers' character to appear at science center

An actor featured on the public television show Mister Rogers' Neighborhood will visit the Maryland Science Center today and tomorrow to talk about the show and help launch a monthlong sweater-and-clothing drive to benefit the needy in nearby neighborhoods.

Any child who donates a sweater or other garment will be admitted free with a paying adult this month. The offer does not include tickets to the IMAX theater. The clothing will be distributed to six area homeless shelters and poverty centers.

David Newell, who portrayed Mr. McFeely - the "Speedy Delivery" man - in the children's television series, is scheduled to be there most of today, beginning at 11 a.m., and from noon to 3 p.m. tomorrow, when he will be accompanied by the show's Purple Panda. The center features an exhibition that replicates the TV show's set and displays one of Mr. Rogers' trademark sweaters and a pair of his sneakers.

Reading event planned today at industry museum

Celebrity readers will join Baltimore elementary school pupils today for Read Across America Day at the Museum of Industry, on Key Highway near Federal Hill.

U.S. Rep. Elijah E. Cummings and Ms. Maryland, Kelly Glorioso, are among those expected to read to more than 700 children. Arts and crafts, a theater presentation and certificates for participants also will be featured. The goal is to promote literacy and recognize those schools with the highest participation in book clubs.

The event will take place from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

In Baltimore County

Jury set to deliberate on value of parkland

TOWSON - A Baltimore County Circuit Court jury was expected to begin deliberations this morning to determine the value of the 96-acre site of Meadowood Regional Park.

The county acquired the right to the land, at Greenspring Valley and Falls roads, through a court-approved condemnation in 1999 after the owner, Clarence L. Elder, refused to sell. County officials offered Elder $2.4 million.

But Elder's appraiser told jurors the site could be used for private school athletic fields and is worth $11.3 million. Elder hoped to build shops and offices when he purchased the site for $1.85 million in 1990, but his requests for zoning changes were denied. Closing arguments were presented yesterday.

Dance marathon to benefit Children's House at Hopkins

TOWSON - Students from colleges and universities throughout the Baltimore area will gather at Towson University tonight for a dance marathon to raise money for the Children's House at Johns Hopkins.

The marathon will run from 7 p.m. today to 7 a.m. tomorrow at Towson Center. The event will feature bands, games, activities and food. It is open to the public for a $5 admission fee.

The Children's House is a 15-bedroom facility across from Johns Hopkins Hospital that provides lodging for families while their children are being treated at Baltimore hospitals. Since opening in 1993, it has housed more than 2,500 families from 49 states and 30 foreign countries. Information: 410-704-4427.

F.A.M.E. orchestra to give concert tomorrow evening

TOWSON - The F.A.M.E. orchestra, young musicians conducted by Lucy Rouse, will present its spring concert at 7:30 p.m. tomorrow at Woodbrook Baptist Church, 25 Stevenson Lane.

The program will include music by Vivaldi, Tchaikovsky and Rossini.

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