News from around the Baltimore region

July 15, 2005


Official charged in Arundel animal cruelty case resigns

The top Prince George's County health official, who was arrested Wednesday on two felony charges of animal cruelty and six misdemeanor charges of animal neglect, resigned from his county post yesterday.

"It is an unfortunate chain of events that has led to Dr. [Frederick J.] Corder's decision," Prince George's County Executive Jack Johnson said in an e-mailed statement.

The charges were brought against Corder five weeks after Anne Arundel County animal control officials confiscated eight animals from his Harwood farm - two miniature horses with severely overgrown hooves and six dogs that were covered in urine and feces.

"It is rare that we come across cases of this magnitude," said Lt. Jonathan R. Church, who oversees animal control for the county police.

Police documents filed with the Anne Arundel District Court state: "The [horses'] hooves were grossly overgrown, misshapen and the damage was so extensive that the horses' bones in its feet had rotated, become distorted in shape and partially eroded. ... The veterinarian stated the [injuries] ... took place over months to years of neglect."

One of the dogs had "a fever of 104 degrees, conjunctivitis in both eyes, two ear infections and the skin was inflamed, red and irritated with patches of scabs," according to police documents filed with the court. With Corder's permission, one of the horses - a stallion named Star - was later euthanized, police said.

Corder was released from the Anne Arundel County Detention Center on Wednesday evening after posting $100,000 bail. He faces up to three years in jail if he is convicted of the felony charges.

- Annie Linskey


Brick-washing firm faces charges of water pollution

A Baltimore brick-washing company was charged yesterday with water pollution, state authorities said.

Masons Unlimited LLC of the 2400 block of James St. was charged in District Court with two counts of illegally discharging wastewater containing lead into state waters, according to the Maryland attorney general's office.

Incidents took place in the 500 block of S. Potomac St. between Dec. 22 and Jan. 11, and in the 1700 block of Light St. on Feb. 22, the office said. Each pollution count carries a maximum penalty of $25,000.


Sen. Mikulski remains hospitalized for 4th day

U.S. Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski spent a fourth day at Mercy Medical Center yesterday, and a spokeswoman said that there was no update on her condition or when she would be released.

The Maryland Democrat, who will be 69 next week, was admitted to the hospital Monday after she complained of feeling tired for some time. Mikulski's doctor ordered diagnostic tests, which spokeswoman Melissa Schwartz has called "routine."


Public defender's office opposes city joining suit

The Baltimore public defender's office has joined the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services in opposing the city's attempt to join a lawsuit over delays at the state-run Central Booking and Intake Center.

In April, the public defender's office sued the public safety department over excessive delays in the booking process that led to suspects being detained more than 24 hours without receiving an initial hearing.

City Circuit Judge John M. Glynn ordered Central Booking officials to release suspects held longer than legally allowed. The facility is responsible for processing about 100,000 people arrested in Baltimore each year.

Pointing to a threat to public safety - and the release of 85 suspects from April to June - the city filed a motion to join the public defender's office in its suit against the state. City Solicitor Ralph S. Tyler argued in court filings this week that the city should be allowed as a plaintiff because the public defender's office, which represents criminal defendants, benefits "from Central Booking's dysfunction and from the current status quo."

The public defender's office argued this week that the city does not have grounds to join the suit. Noting past disputes between the city and state, the public defender's office said it did not want its case to "devolve into one more forum for ... bickering if the city is permitted to intervene."

The attorney general's office, which represents the public safety department, argued in court papers that the city's place in the lawsuit should be as a defendant because of policing policies that it says contribute to Central Booking delays.

Glynn must decide whether to allow the city to join the suit.

- Gus G Sentementes


Contact with Lake Ogleton water discouraged after spill

The Anne Arundel County Department of Health said yesterday that direct contact with the water in Lake Ogleton in Annapolis should be avoided after a water main break released about 5,000 gallons of wastewater into the lake.

The main had been repaired by yesterday evening, department spokeswoman Elin Jones said, and the lake was safe for boating.

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