Homeless man charged in attempted carjacking at Harford County apartment complex

Harford County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a homeless man in connection to an attempted carjacking over the weekend at the Riverside Apartments, according to charging documents filed in Harford County District Court.

Justin M. Schlotterbeck, 37, is charged with attempted carjacking, malicious destruction of less than $1,000 of property, theft less than $100 and two counts of drug possession, according to charging documents. He is being held without bond after a bail review hearing Tuesday.

Justin M. Schlotterbeck, 37, is charged with attempted carjacking and other crimes in connection to an incident Sunday at the Riverside Apartments.
Justin M. Schlotterbeck, 37, is charged with attempted carjacking and other crimes in connection to an incident Sunday at the Riverside Apartments. (Courtesy Harford County Sheriff's Office)

Around 10 a.m. Sunday, a sheriff’s deputy responded to a report of an unknown man kicking a door at the Riverside Apartments near Aberdeen. The deputy was not able to find the person, but a second call came approximately 15 minutes later and described a man later identified as Schlotterbeck kicking at the door. Police could not find him after the second call.

Deputies then spoke to a woman at the complex who said she had been assaulted while walking to her car, the documents state.


She told police that Schlotterbeck had been staring at her on her walk from her apartment to her car. She said “hi” to diffuse the tension, the documents state, and he allegedly began waving his hands in her facing and yelling at her, asking “where’s the ... gun?” according to documents.

The woman feared for her safety, the documents state, so when Schlotterbeck allegedly told her to hand over her keys, she did. He allegedly took her keys and wallet but was unable to start her car because it had an interlock device in it, according to the documents.

An onlooker saw the woman running from Schlotterbeck as he tried to start the car. When he failed to, he ran out of the onlooker’s sight, the documents state.

Police also spoke with Schlotterbeck’s brother who said he’d received a call from Schlotterbeck stating “the TV told him that the neighbors at [the apartment]... had his daughter.”

Police were able to obtain Schlotterbeck’s Motor Vehicle Administration record, and witnesses identified him as the man kicking at the door and taking the keys, the documents state. Further investigation also revealed that Schlotterbeck had been banned from the Riverside Apartments complex on Nov. 7.

Maryland State Police troopers arrived with a K-9 unit to track Schlotterbeck, according to the documents, which led them to a wooded area near Brass Mill Road. Around noon, the documents state, deputies ran across Schlotterbeck on Brass Mill Road near the 4600 block of Appliance Drive.

When approached by police, "he immediately put his hands up in the air,” the documents state, and was detained.

Deputies searched Schlotterbeck before sending him to the hospital for injuries he sustained while "running through the woods in order to escape,” the documents state, and found prescription bottles that had suspected drug residue in them — along with two bags of suspected cocaine and heroin.

On the way to the hospital, Schlotterbeck told the medics he had been doing “scramble," heroin cut with other drugs or fillers, according to documents.

The apartment door he had been beating on belong to a woman who let him stay there. According to court documents, she told police she knew Schlotterbeck and felt bad for him because he was homeless.

Schlotterbeck faces a potential maximum of 32 years and four months incarceration.

Online court records do not list an attorney for Schlotterbeck.

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