City/county Digest



In Baltimore City

Man, 61, pleads guilty to molesting boy overseas

A former Baltimore man pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court yesterday to molesting a 13-year-old boy in Cambodia, a charge that stemmed from a wide-ranging investigation into accusations that the man sexually exploited children in that country and in the Philippines.

Richard Arthur Schmidt, 61, was on parole when he left the country for the Philippines in 2002, prosecutors said. He had served 13 years in a Maryland prison for sexual offenses involving a 12-year-old boy.

In Southeast Asia, he molested more children, prosecutors said. He was charged in federal court under a new law that allows U.S. authorities to pursue American child "sex tourists" overseas. He is set to be sentenced Aug. 24.

Churches urged to revive corner-adoption program

The Rev. Willie Ray joined with Police Commissioner Kevin P. Clark and others last night in West Baltimore in hopes of reviving a 7-year-old campaign to have churches adopt drug-infested street corners and transform vacant homes into havens for children.

Ray is urging churches to claim corners as their own. "Everybody ought to have a corner named after their church," he said. "They haven't done that yet."

The longtime Baltimore activist, the organizer of Save Another Youth-Stop the Violence Coalition, held the gathering -- which included a presentation of certificates to local children -- outside the Officer Oliver Murdock Safety House in the 2800 block of Harlem Ave. The formerly vacant Rosemont home, which opened last year, provides children with a place to play on computers and takes them on field trips.

Block party set tonight to promote HIV testing

City and state health agencies will hold a block party tonight to promote HIV/AIDS testing.

Information and entertainment will be offered in the 600 block of N. Carey St., at the intersection with Harlem Avenue. The Baltimore City Health Department will offer free, confidential HIV testing at the event.

Booths offering health information will open at 5 p.m. Live entertainment will be presented from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.

In Baltimore County

Death of suspect in rape ruled suicide

TOWSON -- The state medical examiner's office has ruled the death of a man recently arrested and charged in a 1987 rape case a suicide, county police said yesterday.

Darrell Gene Haynes, 45, shot himself Wednesday at his Middle River home, police said. Haynes was arrested and charged June 24 in the 1987 rape of a 21-year-old woman in Dundalk, police said. Evidence was linked to DNA in a statewide database for convicted felons, police said. Haynes was a registered child sex offender who had submitted a DNA sample.

Police said they were called to the home about 1:20 p.m., after Haynes' wife found his body.

County officer injured in motorcycle crash

A Baltimore County police officer was injured in Anne Arundel County yesterday morning as he drove a motorcycle from Annapolis in preparation for today's funeral of a Baltimore police officer killed in the line of duty, county police said.

Officer Frederick Denker, 40, was returning to Baltimore County after having a department motorcycle serviced at the Annapolis Harley Davidson shop. The accident happened on northbound Interstate 97 near the Interstate 895 ramp, police said.

Denker, a 17-year veteran assigned to the traffic section, was flown to Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, where he was treated and released yesterday. Police are investigating the cause of the crash, which they said did not involve any other vehicles.

Police seeking man, 67, who left elder-care facility

RANDALLSTOWN -- A man who has trouble walking and is on several medications wandered away from an elder-care facility in Randallstown more than a week ago, and his family has not seen him since, county police said yesterday.

Leon Saunders, 67, was last seen June 30 as he sat in a wheelchair outside the Genesis Elder Care home in the 9100 block of Liberty Road, police said. Saunders can walk with a cane, and police think he might have been heading for Ensor Street in Baltimore.

Saunders is described as black, 144 pounds, 5 feet 3 inches tall, with gray hair and brown eyes. He was wearing a red shirt and blue jeans. Anyone with information is asked to call police at 410-307-2020.

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