Woman, 20, is convicted in death of 2 in collision

September 15, 2006

A 20-year-old Parkton woman was convicted yesterday of two counts of auto manslaughter and other charges in the deaths of a woman and her grandson in a head-on collision in November.

Jessica L. Crumpler was found guilty by Baltimore County Circuit Judge Patrick Cavanaugh in the deaths of Audrey Baseman, 72, and her grandson, Joseph Baseman, 14, both of White Hall.

Crumpler was driving a 1998 GMC Jimmy sport utility vehicle south on York Road, near Beetree Road, when she attempted to pass a car in front of her. She crossed the double yellow line at the crest of a hill and crashed into Audrey Baseman's 1988 Chevrolet Nova, prosecutor Allan Webster said.

Crumpler, who does not have any previous criminal convictions, is scheduled to be sentenced in January. State sentencing guidelines recommend a term of three months to four years. Webster said he would ask for a sentence within that range.

Jennifer McMenamin

Woodlawn

Small fire set in school bathroom

A small fire set in the bathroom of a Baltimore County high school sent students home early yesterday, authorities said.

Shortly before 9 a.m., county firefighters arrived at Woodlawn High and found that someone had set a plastic toilet paper holder on fire, officials said. School was closed at 10 a.m.

No one was injured in the fire, which caused about $1,000 in damage, officials said.

Elise Armacost, a spokeswoman for the county Fire Department, said that since January last year, county fire officials have responded to the school 11 times for fire-related calls, which can include reports of smoke, actual fires and fire alarms.

Nick Shields and Julie Scharper

North Point

State buys land at 1814 battle site

The state has purchased 9 acres at the site of the 19th-century Battle of North Point for preservation as a historic landmark, officials announced yesterday.

The parcel, on North Point Road near Trappe Road, is described as the only undeveloped remnant of land where American troops fought off British invaders in September 1814 during the War of 1812. Much of the battlefield is now covered by homes, businesses and roads, including the Beltway.

The Trust for Public Land, a nonprofit land preservation and conservation group, negotiated the $1.75 million purchase of the land from Mars Super Markets. The site will be managed by the Maryland Park Service, and it is to tie in to the proposed "Star-Spangled Banner Trail" that would connect War of 1812 sites in Virginia, Washington and Maryland.

The announcement of the state's purchase of the site came on the 192nd anniversary of the end of the three-day battle.

Towson

Church wins bid for ex-nursing home

A New Jersey-based church yesterday submitted a winning bid of $231,000 to buy the former Armacost Nursing Home building near Towson, said a spokesman for the auctioneer, A.J. Biling and Co.

The nursing home, at Regester Avenue and Sherwood Road, closed last year after a state report found "deficiencies" in the facility, including mice and dirty bathrooms.

Nick Shields

Events or news items for the Baltimore County Digest may be submitted to baltco.news@baltsun.com. Information should be sent at least 10 days in advance.

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