County, Mount Airy close to final pact on Town Hall...

Carroll Digest

August 14, 2002

County, Mount Airy close to final pact on Town Hall

Carroll County will give Mount Airy the deed to its Town Hall, provided the town accepts conditions.

The town entered into a 20-year, $1-a-year lease for the three-story brick building in 1992 and has spent about $35,000 on improvements, most to the heating and air-conditioning systems. Town officials are reluctant to pay for more than $150,000 in much-needed renovations for a building Mount Airy does not own.

The 70-year-old former bank building recently was appraised at $212,000. If Mount Airy decides to discontinue using the building, ownership would revert to the county. If the building were sold, the county would claim the appraised amount. Any equity would revert to the town.

The town must approve the proposal before the deal is completed.

Man is accused of using Net to meet girl for sex

A 60-year-old Prince George's County man was arrested near Westminster yesterday, accused of traveling to Carroll County after arranging over the Internet to have sex with a fictitious underage girl, according to state police.

A Carroll County sheriff's deputy, working undercover as a member of the state's Internet Crimes against Children Task Force, was in a chat room using an adult male identity when he was contacted Aug. 2 by a man who asked to have sex with the fictitious man's daughter and for a photograph of the girl engaging in sexual acts, police said.

Michael P. Patterson, of the 13000 block of Coldwater Court, Fort Washington, was charged with possession of a deadly weapon; using a handgun in the commission of a felony; using a computer to solicit sex with a minor; soliciting a minor to engage in sexual conduct; and solicitation to photograph a minor engaged in sexual conduct.

Armed robbery charges filed after raid at home

A 20-year-old Westminster man was arrested yesterday in an armed robbery last week at the Twin Kiss Carry Out on Route 140 in Finksburg, authorities said.

Kenneth J. Sears, 20, of the first block of Bond St. was charged with armed robbery, assault, possession of cocaine, marijuana and paraphernalia, and with keeping a common nuisance. He was arrested after police raided a Bond Street home and seized crack cocaine and marijuana, authorities said.

The robbery occurred about 7 p.m. Friday when a man tried to take cash from a customer's pocket as he was paying for food at the carryout window, police said. The customer sought medical attention, police said.

Commissioners OK funding for fire control system

The county commissioners voted yesterday to spend $56,000 for a fire suppression system on the lower level of the County Office Building in Westminster.

The system, which lowers oxygen so that a fire cannot burn, would protect the county's phone and computer lines and its emergency center. Unlike a sprinkler system, no water would be used.

"This is added insurance to protect our investment," said G. Michael Whitson, chief of the county bureau of facilities.

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