Baltimore County Digest

Baltimore County Digest

March 31, 2006

Man, 47, pleads guilty to stealing from UMBC

A 47-year-old Catonsville man pleaded guilty yesterday to ordering bathroom fixtures for his house and passing the expense on to the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, where he was a construction project manager, according to the state attorney general's office.

Joseph A. Shryock entered a guilty plea to one count of felony theft in Baltimore County Circuit Court, the attorney general's office said. He is scheduled to be sentenced in September.

During the plea hearing, Shryock admitted participating in a scheme in April 2003 with his supervisor, according to a statement of facts read in court by prosecutors during the plea hearing. The pair purchased bathroom fixtures for their homes and charged the materials to the university through construction projects they were supervising. UMBC paid about $3,000 for Shryock's fixtures, according to the statement of facts.

The supervisor, who has not been charged, "implied" that he and Shryock "were entitled to the free fixtures due to the way they had been treated by the administration at UMBC" and that the free fixtures served "as a way to `get back' at the officials from UMBC who mistreated him," according to the statement of facts.

As part of the plea agreement, Shryock has agreed to cooperate in the state's continuing investigation into corruption in the procurement process at UMBC, a spokesman for the attorney general's office said.

Patrick R. Sisk, a Cockeysville concrete contractor, was also charged last month with felony theft, conspiracy to commit theft and bribery. Those charges stem from an alleged four-year scheme between Sisk and a UMBC construction manager to generate a steady stream of illegal cash through the submission of false and inflated invoices to the university. More than $100,000 was then kicked back by Sisk to the construction manager and others at the manager's direction, according to the attorney general's office.

Jennifer McMenamin

Dundalk

Police seek man in two robberies

Police were searching for a man suspected in two convenience store robberies in the Dundalk area, authorities said yesterday.

A man robbed a Royal Farms store in the first block of Dundalk Ave. on March 14 and another Royal Farms store in the 7700 block of German Hill Road on Monday, police said.

According to police, in both cases the man approached the store counter with a small purchase, and then, when the cash register was open, threatened the clerk and grabbed money from the cash drawer.

During Monday's robbery, the man said he had a gun but never showed it, police said.

He was described as a black man, 30 to 40 years old, about 5 foot 6 to 6 feet tall, with a medium build. He has sideburns and a goatee and a tattoo on the left side of his neck, police said.

In the March 14 robbery, he was wearing a black windbreaker-type jacket and burgundy pants, and a black baseball-style cap, police said. On Monday, he was wearing a red-and-white baseball cap and a dark denim jacket and pants.

The man is also believed to be responsible for a robbery in Baltimore City, county police said.

Anyone with information about the man is asked to call Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7-LOCKUP.

Nick Shields

Interstate 195

Lanes will close for resurfacing

The State Highway Administration will be closing lanes along Interstate 195 in the southwestern end of the county while sections of the highway are resurfaced, state officials said.

SHA will resurface pavement on the approaches to four bridges between the Patapsco River/Anne Arundel County line and the CSX/MARC railroad. The project, costing $250,000, is expected to be completed in mid-April, weather permitting, state officials said.

Single-lane closures along eastbound and westbound I-195 may occur between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Monday through Friday and between 5 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday. Crews will work in the vicinity of the bridges carrying I-195 over the Patapsco River, Interstate 895 (Harbor Tunnel Thruway), U.S. Route 1 (Washington Boulevard) and the CSX/MARC railroad.

Information: 410-321-2800 or 1-800-962-3077.

Zoning

Expert will discuss new approaches

An expert on community design and revitalization will make two appearances next week in Baltimore County to discuss a new approach to zoning.

Geoff Ferrell will discuss "form-based codes," described as an alternative to conventional zoning ordinances. The approach focuses more on relationship between buildings, streets and parking and less on land use and architectural details.

Ferrell, a principal of Ferrell Madden Associates, a Washington urban design and town planning firm, is to speak at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Minnegan Room, Johnny Unitas Stadium Field House at Towson University, as part of the Urban Design Assistance Team project in Towson. He also is to address the county planning board at 4 p.m. Thursday in Room 407 of the County Courts Building, 401 Bosley Ave. in Towson.

Greater Parkville

Council to discuss open space, parks

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