State police seek man who fled wreck on I-95

Pickup truck was taken after driver tried to help

May 09, 2002|By Julie Bykowicz | Julie Bykowicz,SUN STAFF

Maryland State Police continued searching yesterday for Gregory Augustus James Jr., a Baltimore man they believe fled the scene of a two-car accident Tuesday morning on Interstate 95 in Howard County using the Ford pickup truck of a driver who had stopped to help.

Police identified James, 32, by listening to messages on a cell phone found in the smashed Isuzu Trooper involved in the accident, which sent two Silver Spring residents to Maryland Shock Trauma Center and slowed the morning commute.

James, who was driving with a suspended license, had borrowed the Isuzu from friends, said Sgt. Charles Moore. Police spent Tuesday trying to find the sport utility vehicle's owner to confirm that James had been driving it, Moore said yesterday.

"But we developed most of our information from the cell phone," he said. "Everything just blossomed from there."

Police believe he is in the Reisterstown Road area of Baltimore, Moore said. They issued a warrant for his arrest late Tuesday, charging him with more than a dozen counts, including motor vehicle theft.

Authorities consider James possibly armed and dangerous because he has an extensive criminal history, according to court records, including a conviction in a 1995 armed carjacking in Baltimore. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 10 years, records show. James was released in March, said a spokeswoman at the state Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.

State police said they are not sure why James left the accident scene.

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