City / County Digest

CITY / COUNTY DIGEST

August 03, 2007

Arsonist sets fire to hay and shed in Taneytown

The Maryland State Fire Marshal's Office is investigating two arson fires that destroyed a shed and numerous bales of hay in Taneytown yesterday, authorities said.

Taneytown police discovered the hay on fire at 12:21 a.m. yesterday in the 3200 block of Harney Road. More than 100 bales of hay -- worth about $9,000 -- were burned, said Allen Gosnell, deputy chief fire marshal in the Westminster office.

This was the third time in 2 1/2 weeks that hay bales and straw have been set ablaze at that location, Gosnell said.

The hay bales flared up again yesterday afternoon when firefighters went to move them, said Mike Clapsaddle, Taneytown Volunteer Fire Company public information officer. Firefighters were spreading the bales out and putting water and foam on them, he said.

While firefighters were investigating the hay fire, shortly before 2 a.m., a shed was set on fire about a block and a half away in the 100 block of W. Baltimore St., said Taneytown Fire Chief Brett Six.

"We had our back to him [the arsonist]," Six said.

Investigators said the second fire started in a brush pile outside the 18-foot by 20-foot shed. Six said the fire spread to the interior of the shed, damaging some of the contents, including a motorcycle. Damage to the shed and its contents was estimated at $30,000.

Investigators believe the fires may have been set by the same person or persons, most likely juveniles, Gosnell said.

"It's getting to be too coincidental," Gosnell said. "We don't have a fire problem in Carroll, we have a juvenile problem."

Anyone with information about the fires is asked to call the fire marshal's office at 410-871-3050 or 888-214-7892.

Ellie Baublitz

Baltimore

: Reward offered

City police provide sketch of rapist

Metro Crime Stoppers at 410-276-8888 is offering a reward of up to $2,000 for information leading to the arrest and indictment of the man who raped and robbed an 88-year-old cancer patient in her Southeast Baltimore home Wednesday morning.

The man entered the woman's home in the 1300 block of Bethlehem Ave. about 9:30 a.m. by posing as a maintenance worker to fix house wiring.

He then raped her and robbed her of $6 before fleeing, police said.

Police, who yesterday released an artist's rendering of the rapist, described him as a black male in his late 20s, with light skin, a medium build and about 6-feet tall.

At the time of the attack, the man was wearing a gray shirt and gray or tan pants, police said.

Free film

`Over the Hedge' at B&O Museum

The animated feature film "Over the Hedge" will be screened Aug. 10 at the B&O Railroad Museum's Free Friday Flicks festival. In addition to the free movie, scheduled to start about 8:30 p.m., the admission to the museum will be free from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

There also will be carnival games, contest and education displays. The event is sponsored by Coventry Health Care and will include personalities from Baltimore's Fox television affiliate, including morning new anchor Patrice Harris and chief meteorologist Vytas Reid.

The museum is at 901 W. Pratt St.

Education

Notre Dame plans information events

Information sessions on the accelerated college and weekend college programs at the College of Notre Dame are scheduled at 9 a.m. Aug. 11 and 6 p.m. Aug. 21. Both sessions will be held in Fourier Hall on the colleges campus, 4701 N. Charles St. Information or to make a reservation at one of the sessions: 410-532-5500 or www.ndm.edu.

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