News from around the Baltimore region

April 01, 2005


Magazine ranks Hopkins medical research No. 2

The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine's research program recaptured its place as the second best in the country, trailing only Harvard's in U.S. News & World Report's annual comparison, the magazine announced yesterday.

"It comes out as a numerical score, but what [is] far more important to us - it's a reflection of the fact that we bring bright, young, energetic people together with brilliant scientists and wait for the magic to happen," Dr. David Nichols, vice dean for education, said yesterday. The rankings are to appear in next week's edition.

Rounding out the top 10 were Washington University of St. Louis - which ranked ahead of Hopkins last year - the University of Pennsylvania, the University of California-San Francisco, Duke, the University of Washington, Stanford, the University of Michigan and Columbia.

In a specialty-by-specialty comparison, Hopkins ranked first in internal medicine and addictions, shared the top spot with Harvard in geriatrics, and ranked third in pediatrics and fourth in women's health. Hopkins also ranked first in a separate comparison of engineering specialty programs.

The magazine also ranked medical schools according to the quality of their primary care programs. In that comparison, Hopkins ranked 23rd and the University of Maryland School of Medicine ranked 27th.


Man, 19, shot while sitting in car near The Block dies

A 19-year-old South Baltimore man who was shot in the head early Wednesday while seated in a parked car near The Block died yesterday afternoon at the Maryland Shock Trauma Center, police said.

Gerard Chase of the 1200 block of Cherry Hill Road in Cherry Hill was in the driver's seat of a friend's 1997 Nissan in the first block of Commerce St., near Baltimore's adult entertainment strip, about 2:40 a.m. when an assailant fired three shots into the car, hitting Chase once in the head, said homicide Detective Donny Bradshaw.

Chase, who was known to doormen on The Block, had been seen arguing with another man outside Crazy John's carryout in the 400 block of E. Baltimore St. shortly before he was shot, Bradshaw said. The detective urged anyone with information to call 410-396-2100.


Project Clean Stream seeks help with cleanup Saturday

Volunteers are being sought to participate in Project Clean Stream, an event that is expected to be one of Maryland's largest coordinated stream cleanups.

More than 100 sites in Central Maryland and the Eastern Shore will be cleaned up from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday as part of the event coordinated by the nonprofit Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay.

In 2004, about 1,200 volunteers removed more than 65,000 pounds of trash from state streams.

For a list of cleanup sites in Baltimore City and Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Cecil, Harford, Howard, Kent, Queen Anne's and Wicomico counties, contact the alliance's Kate Dowling at 410-377-6270 or Additional information is available at www.alliance


Police union, councilman denounce arrest `quotas'

The city police union and a councilman yesterday renewed their criticism of police department officials who they say are setting quotas for arrests.

An official form distributed recently to some officers in the Eastern District asks them to set goals for how many arrests, car stops and other actions they can accomplish in a week. Lt. Frederick V. Roussey, the president of the local police union, said the distribution of the form implies a quota.

"Now they've got to set their own quotas?" Roussey asked. "Obviously no one in-house is going to take care of it, so I hope the mayor steps in and stops this insanity."

Last weekend, a police performance evaluation system prompted the transfer of 27 "low-performing officers." Councilman Kenneth N. Harris and Roussey said the system was likely to prompt unnecessary arrests and could cause civil rights violations.

The department countered that there are no quotas and that most officers are pleased with the system - including the recent memo asking Eastern District officers to set goals.

"There's nothing wrong with asking officers to set their own standards and goals," said department spokesman Matt Jablow. "They won't be punished if they don't reach those goals."

Jablow said he is not sure how many officers received the form, and he stressed that it also asks officers to provide a written goal to improve performance.

Roussey said an officer was threatened with suspension after refusing to provide numbers on the form.

Harris said he is scheduled to meet today with Police Commissioner Leonard D. Hamm to discuss his concerns.

- Ryan Davis


Harford teacher charged with sexually abusing student

A grand jury has charged a Harford County high school teacher with sexually abusing one of his students, Harford County State's Attorney Joseph I. Cassilly said yesterday.

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