City/county Digest


Metro: News from around the Baltimore region

July 19, 2005


Man, 29, gets 20 years for strangling his wife

A 29-year-old Cockeysville man who strangled his wife last year was sentenced yesterday to 20 years in prison, Baltimore County prosecutors said.

John Christopher Arnold was convicted in May of second-degree murder in the Nov. 5 death of his wife, Megan, at their apartment complex on Staghorn Court.

John Arnold told authorities that he and his wife had taken LSD and Ecstasy - drugs that sparked a bad reaction in Megan Arnold, Assistant State's Attorney Stephen Roscher said. Arnold said he strangled his wife while trying to quieten her, the prosecutor said.

Megan Arnold suffered injuries that showed she had struggled with her husband, Roscher said.

Circuit Judge Mickey J. Norman sentenced Arnold to 30 years with all but 20 years suspended and placed him on five years' supervised probation.


Del. Zirkin announces run for 11th District Senate seat

Del. Bobby A. Zirkin formally announced his candidacy yesterday for the 11th District state Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Paula C. Hollinger.

Zirkin's announcement is part of the continued political fallout from U.S. Sen. Paul S. Sarbanes' decision not to seek re-election next year. With 3rd District Rep. Benjamin L. Cardin vying for Sarbanes' seat, Hollinger said last week that she would run for Cardin's seat - a decision that Zirkin, 34, said propelled him into the state Senate race.

"I'm ready to tackle the challenges of the Maryland state Senate and take the issues I've worked on ... to the other side of the hall," said Zirkin, a Pikesville Democrat.

Of the other two 11th District delegates, Dan K. Morhaim has said he plans to run for re-election while Jon S. Cardin, Benjamin Cardin's nephew, said yesterday that he was still "very much mulling" a run for his uncle's seat. Both delegates are Democrats.

The 11th District includes Pikesville and other areas of northwestern Baltimore County.


Teen shot in apparent drug deal, police say

One of two Columbia teenagers who police said tried to buy drugs with a stack of cash mixed with blank paper remained in the hospital yesterday after being wounded in a shootout early Sunday.

Police said Peair Turner, 17, and Devon Dixon, 18, entered the Barber King shop in Columbia's Long Reach Village Center about 1 a.m. Sunday to buy marijuana from one of its employees, who was cutting his brother's hair.

Police said the deal went bad, and one of the teenagers pulled a gun to rob the employee, Thomas Robertson, 24, of Hanover. A struggle ensued, during which three shots were fired, police said.

Police said Robertson's brother, Jeffrey Robertson, 25, responding to screams for help, opened fire on the teenagers and hit Dixon, who fled.

Nathanial Quick, 18, of Columbia drove Dixon, who was shot in the chest, to Howard County General Hospital.

Police said officers police found drugs in the car and arrested Quick. Dixon later was taken to Prince George's Hospital Center, where he was upgraded from critical to fair condition yesterday.

Police said they arrested Turner at the barber shop and charged him as an adult with attempted second-degree murder, assault and robbery. He was being held yesterday at the Howard County Detention Center on $200,000 bond, said Melanie C. Pereira, head of the county Department of Corrections.

Police said Thomas Robertson was charged with possession of drugs with the intent to distribute after officers found a gallon-size bag of marijuana in the shop. Jeffrey Robertson of Bunker Hill, W.Va. was charged with possession of a handgun without a permit. Police confiscated a revolver and semiautomatic gun at the scene.

- Melissa Harris


Police seek public's help in probe of man's death

Baltimore County police are seeking help in their investigation of the death of a man whose body was found last week behind a Chase shopping center.

On Thursday afternoon, police found the body of James Richard Myers, 44, of the 7300 block of Greenbank Road in Middle River in a marshy area behind a Wal-Mart in the Carroll Island Shopping Center. On Friday, Myers' death was ruled a homicide, but the cause of death has not been released by police.

According to police, Myers was last seen July 11, and a missing persons report was filed Wednesday. Investigators are seeking information about Myers' activities before he was killed and about who might have been with him.

Police described Myers as a slim white man, about 6 feet, 1 inch tall, with a mustache. He walked with a limp, police said.

Anyone who saw Myers on July 11 is asked to contact police at 410-307-2020 or Metro Crime Stoppers at 866-756-2587.


Sewage leak closes creek to swimming, recreation

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