Around The Region

AROUND THE REGION

April 07, 2009

Hurt in house fire, city woman dies

A woman died Monday after she was injured in a house fire about 11 p.m. Sunday in East Baltimore, authorities said. Firefighters found flames and smoke on the first floor of the house in the 2600 block of Aisquith St. and rescued the unconscious woman, said Chief Kevin Cartwright, a Fire Department spokesman. The woman, Betty Godfrey, whose age was not available, was taken to the burn unit at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, where she died early Monday from burns and smoke inhalation. Cartwright said a preliminary investigation indicated that the use of candles may have been the cause of the fire and that the house had no electric power. He said investigators did not find any smoke detectors in the home and found only a bracket where a smoke alarm had been installed. He said the woman was the fifth person to die this year in a city fire. Last year, seven people died in fires in Baltimore during the similar period, Cartwright said.

Gus G. Sentementes, Richard Irwin

Man charged in deaths of two men at carryout

Baltimore police have charged a man in a warrant in the fatal shootings of two men last month in a Chinese carryout in North Baltimore. Datwan Ramsey, 23, faces charges of first-degree murder, assault and illegal use of a handgun in the killings, according to city police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi. Ramsay is in jail on an unrelated charge, court records show. He is accused of fatally shooting Anthony Bailey, 20, and Adrian Martise, 24, in the Yau Brothers carryout about 10 p.m. March 17, police said. He is also accused of wounding a third victim, a 21-year-old man. Guglielmi said detectives solved the case with the help of a witness. Ramsey lives in the 1000 block of Radnor Ave. in Northeast Baltimore. He was being held without bail at the Central Booking and Intake Center on drug-dealing charges in connection with an arrest March 28, electronic court records show.

Gus G. Sentementes

Beltway crash kills 1, injures 5

One person died in a single-vehicle crash on the Baltimore Beltway early Monday, according to the state police at the Golden Ring Barracks. Police said a 1998 Ford Explorer was carrying seven people when it crashed near the Harford Road exit on the inner loop about 3:40 a.m. Investigators believe the right front tire blew out, causing the vehicle to spin, strike a guardrail and overturn. The person was pronounced dead at the scene. Five others were taken to hospitals. State police said it appeared the occupants were from outside the country and it would be at least a day before their names were available.

Richard Irwin

Wider unemployment benefits approved

The General Assembly approved legislation Monday night that expands eligibility for unemployment benefits to part-time workers who have typically worked 20 or more hours a week. The vote in the House of Delegates was 92-41, over the objections of minority leader Del. Anthony J. O'Donnell, who called the Gov. Martin O'Malley-backed initiative a "bad policy decision" that the state cannot afford. The Senate has approved the bill.

Gadi Dechter

Bleak outlook forcing school to shut down

The 125-year-old Catholic Community School in South Baltimore will close in June because of low enrollment and a bleak financial picture, the principal announced in a letter sent to parents Friday. The school enrolls 165 students and had projected fewer than 150 next fall, compared with 250 less than a decade ago. The principal, Sister Vicki Staub, wrote that the decision to close was made "after prayerful considerations and painstaking discussions." School officials will try to help place students at other Catholic schools, Staub wrote in the letter, which was provided by the Archdiocese of Baltimore. The school has operated with a budget deficit for more than three years, Staub said. Last year, the school was forced to absorb $130,000 in unpaid tuition, and $250,000 in tuition is owed now. The school has remained afloat with financial support from the archdiocese and an anonymous benefactor.

Sara Neufeld

Havre de Grace man gets life term in killing

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