Regional Digest

Regional Digest

January 24, 2004

In Baltimore

Taxi driver identified as victim of tanker crash

Maryland Transportation Authority Police have confirmed the identity of the fourth victim killed when a tanker truck plunged onto the northbound lanes of Interstate 95.

Marc G. Baladi, of the 3000 block of Berkshire Road in Hamilton, was identified as a driver involved in the accident. Authorities had found the charred remains of Baladi's taxi at the scene and used DNA evidence to confirm his identity.

Also killed in the Jan. 14 crash were Jackie Frost of Carroll County, who was driving the tanker; Maurice Durschlag, 62, of Glen Burnie; and Rita Gall, 42, of Lansing, Mich.

Two men sentenced in six shootings last year

Two Baltimore men accused of shooting six people, one fatally, were sentenced to prison yesterday.

Gregory Veale, 20, of the 3000 block of Presstman St., was sentenced to life in prison with all but 35 years suspended for first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder and other crimes. George Smith, of the 1200 block of N. Bond St., was sentenced to life in prison with all but 30 years suspended.

Between May 4 and May 18, prosecutors say, Veale and Smith shot six people, killing Jamal Felton in the 200 block of Lanvale St.

Govans group ousts leader arrested on drug charges

A nonprofit Govans community development corporation dismissed yesterday executive director Garrard Johnson, who was arrested last month on felony drug charges.

"We took that action for the betterment of the organization," said Sedral West, board chairman of the Govans Economic Management Senate.

The board will temporarily assume administrative duties.

In Maryland

Isabel's cost estimated to be $273 million

The price tag for Tropical Storm Isabel hovers around $273 million, according to state officials who testified before the House Appropriations Committee yesterday in Annapolis.

The estimate, said Planning Secretary Audrey E. Scott, includes costs for shoreline remediation, crisis counseling, housing assistance and small-business loans, and about $50 million in damages paid for by local jurisdictions. "But we'll never know the full cost of Hurricane Isabel," Scott said.

As of Jan. 12, more than 17,800 Maryland residents had registered for emergency assistance as a result of the September storm.

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