City / County Digest

CITY / COUNTY DIGEST

November 16, 2006

Hamm honored for pushing conflict-mediation training

For pushing city police officers to get training in conflict mediation this year, Commissioner Leonard D. Hamm was to be honored last night with the "peacemaker of the year" award by a nonprofit group.

Caroline Harmon, executive director of Community Mediation Program Inc., said that since January, the Police Department has been referring city residents to their program. More than 2,000 officers, about two-thirds of the sworn law enforcement personnel, have received mediation training from the Baltimore group.

The department began requiring the training for its officers in response to public criticism over its arrest practices. Last year, city police made nearly 100,000 arrests. And this year, the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People sued the department over its arrest practices.

Through Saturday, police had made more than 79,000 arrests - or about 7,000 fewer than during the same period last year.

Gus G. Sentementes

BALTIMORE: Schools

School board pushes for Waverly addition

The city school board is asking the state for approval to plan for an addition to Waverly Elementary/Middle School, moving to make good on a promise the board made three years ago.

Waverly used to only have an elementary school, and pupils from the community used to attend sixth through eighth grades at Roland Park Elementary/Middle. In 2003, with Roland Park severely overcrowded, the board voted to convert Waverly into a combined elementary/middle school. It promised the community at the time that it would create a school comparable to Roland Park, which is among the city's best.

Community pressure has been mounting because Waverly has not received the renovations to properly accommodate middle school pupils.

Sara Neufeld

Howard County: Ellicott City

Disabled center counselor charged

A former counselor at a Howard County group home for the disabled has been charged with abusing an adult male patient at the home March 10, the state attorney general's office said yesterday. Karen Ashimi, 40, of the 2400 block of Bridgehampton Drive in Parkville faces misdemeanor charges of second-degree abuse of a vulnerable adult, second-degree assault and second-degree neglect of a vulnerable person, according to documents filed in Howard County Circuit Court on Oct. 30. Bill Moss, executive director of Ellicott City-based Linwood Center, said the organization investigated the allegations.

Tyrone Richardson

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