By Pat van den Beemt, firstname.lastname@example.org
11:49 AM EDT, June 27, 2012
A Monkton man was arrested after a group of seven kayakers told police someone was shooting at them while they practiced maneuvers in Gunpowder Falls on June 26.
Police arrested Michael Hamilton, 61, of the 1400 block of Blue Mount Road, and charged him with first- and second-degree assault and reckless endangerment.
According to charging documents, the incident began at 8:08 p.m. when a group of seven people kayaked past a house in Monkton and heard a man yelling at them to leave.
The kayakers then heard several shots and one of them called out, "There are people down here," according to the documents. Several more shots were fired. A kayaker told police a bullet hit the water near him, police report.
The kayakers reported hearing a woman on the property yelling for the man to stop shooting, documents state. The kayakers then took cover in a small cove and called police.
Police went to the house on Blue Mount Road where they interviewed Michael Hamilton's wife, Mollie Hamilton. She told police her husband was not home, the charging documents state.
Kayakers identified Michael Hamilton as the shooter from a photo, the documents state. Police also found three guns in Michael Hamilton's house.
According to the charging documents, after Michael Hamilton returned home, he admitted to police to firing a gun. He told police that people traveling down the Gunpowder in front of his house have littered his property with trash and beer cans. He said that when he told kayakers Wednesday to leave the area of the river near his property, they swore at him and refused to leave, police report.
Hamilton told police he then got a gun and fired shots into the river but that he did not shoot in the direction of the kayakers, documents state.
Hamilton was taken to Baltimore County Detention Center and later released on $100,000 bail.
None of the the kayakers, who live in Manchester, Taneytown and Tennessee, were injured.