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Fallston neighborhood grapples with loss of Baltimore County officer

A Baltimore County Police officer sits in his car near the home of fellow officer Amy S. Caprio in Fallston Tuesday morning. Officer First Class Caprio was killed in the line of duty during an incident in the Perry Hall area Monday afternoon.
A Baltimore County Police officer sits in his car near the home of fellow officer Amy S. Caprio in Fallston Tuesday morning. Officer First Class Caprio was killed in the line of duty during an incident in the Perry Hall area Monday afternoon. (MATT BUTTON / AEGIS STAFF / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Fallston resident Tim Mozingo said he often sees stories in the news about police officers being killed in the line of duty.

But after his neighbor, Baltimore County Police Department Officer First Class Amy S. Caprio, was killed investigating a call about a suspicious vehicle in Perry Hall Monday, Monzingo said it left him and others in the neighborhood with a “dreary feeling.”

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“I see it all over the news, but it doesn’t seem to happen to anyone you know,” the 18-year-old Stevenson University student said Tuesday. “This one really hits home.”

Mozingo, a 2017 graduate of Fallston High School who has returned to his parents’ home on summer break, said he did not know Officer First Class Caprio and her husband well, except to wave at them when the Caprios were out walking their dogs, or when Mozingo was going to work or school.

“[There is] just a dreary feeling around the neighborhood, to be honest,” he said.

Mozingo lives a few doors from the Caprios in a neighborhood of modest single family homes off Pleasantville Road, near its intersection with Route 152. Officer First Class Caprio and her husband, Timothy, purchased their house in July 2015, according to state property tax records.

In midst of a pounding rain, a Baltimore County Police officer sat in a marked cruiser late Tuesday morning in front of the Caprios’ house.

A mailbox at the end of the driveway was painted black with a horizontal blue stripe on the side.

Many Harford County residents obtained similar black logos with blue stripes following the murders of two Harford County Sheriff’s Office deputies, Senior Deputy Patrick Dailey and Deput First Class Mark Logsdon, in February 2016. They were the first Harford deputies to be murdered since 1899.

Several residents on the Caprios’ street either did not answer their doors or declined to talk with members of the media when they did answer.

The Baltimore County officer parked outside the Caprio home shook his head “no” when approached by an Aegis reporter who asked if he would speak with the media.

A marked Harford Sheriff’s Office patrol vehicle was stationed about a block away at the closest intersection.

“We have offered our assistance and are ready to assist if needed,” Cristie Kahler, director of media relations for the Sheriff’s Office, said earlier in the day when asked if her agency had been involved in aiding Baltimore County Police in the wake of Officer First Class Caprio’s death.

The Baltimore County police officer who was killed on duty Monday was Amy S. Caprio, a four-year veteran of the department.

“There’s been a lot of police activity around here since yesterday,” said Mozingo, the neighbor, who said he saw Baltimore County officers working in shifts in front of the Caprio house.

There were a number of visible indicators that families occupy the single-family houses on the Caprios’ street, such as basketball hoops and soccer goals in the yards.

A woman pulling a child in a wagon walked along the block, but declined to speak to a reporter.

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She was observed checking with the Baltimore County officer and then walking up to the Caprio house, re-emerging a short time later.

Mozingo said he expects most neighbors are trying to give the slain officer’s family “time to cope.”

“It’s still fresh in everyone’s minds,” he said.

Downtown Havre de Grace is lit up in blue to honor Fallston resident Amy Caprio, a Baltimore County Police officer killed in the line of duty Monday.
Downtown Havre de Grace is lit up in blue to honor Fallston resident Amy Caprio, a Baltimore County Police officer killed in the line of duty Monday. (Courtesy photo/Adam Rybczynski)

Harford County is home to many law enforcement officers who work both locally and around the region, as well as being home to a number of retired officers.

"Within 48 hours, here in the state of Maryland, one of our colleagues in Baltimore County lost her life this afternoon while, again, serving and protecting the citizens in Baltimore County,” Havre de Grace Police Chief Teresa Walter said during a Havre de Grace City Council meeting Monday night.

She asked city leaders for a brief moment of silence for Officer First Class Caprio “and her family and our colleagues in Baltimore County.” Earlier, Havre de Grace William T. Martin ordered that the city’s downtown be lit up in blue for two nights in honor of Officer First Class Caprio.

Walter noted that National Police Week, a time to honor law enforcement officers around the country who have lost their lives in the line of duty while protecting and serving their communities, just ended Saturday.

City Councilman David Martin echoed the chief’s comments "about the loss of a sister in law enforcement.” Martin, who is retired from the Maryland State Police, recalled when a close friend on the force was shot and killed during Martin’s first year as a trooper in the 1970s.

“The biggest thing I ask is, we support our law enforcement, we watch out for each other and still, if you see something suspicious, report it,” he said. “It’s the only way to keep the community as safe as it is.”

Aegis staff members Matt Button and Erika Butler contributed to this report.

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