Man guilty of assaultWESTMINSTER -- A 25-year-old...


Man guilty of assault

WESTMINSTER -- A 25-year-old man pleaded guilty yesterday to fondling a 14-year-old girl he met at Cranberry Mall in February.

In pleading guilty to the fourth-degree sexual assault charge, Rodney Earl Miles was sentenced by Circuit Judge Raymond E. Beck Sr. to a year in the Department of Corrections. He will serve the sentence concurrently with unrelated convictions.

According to a statement of facts read by the State's Attorney's Office, Miles met the girl -- whose identity is being withheld -- at the mall the night of Feb. 21. He asked her to accompany him to a party in Room 228 of the Days Inn on Cranberry Road.

They walked there at about 8:30 p.m., drank beer, and headed to a home in the 300 block of Logan Drive.

At the home, the statement of facts showed, Miles took the girl to a bedroom, where he started to kiss her. When she screamed, he put one hand over her mouth and fondled her.

Before imposing sentence, which was previously arranged by Miles' public defender and the State's Attorney's Office, Beck listened to the defendant.

"There's places for people like myself, and that's the Department of Corrections," Miles said. "Going to DOC is like culture shock. It's real. It's like a wake-up call."

Woman on probation


WESTMINSTER -- An automatic deposit of a paycheck that never made it into a bank account caused Kathleen Ann Small to bounce 20 checks to an Eldersburg grocery store last year.

Yesterday, in an agreement with the State's Attorney's Office, the 34-year-old woman was found guilty on one of the charges and was granted a probation before judgment.

The remaining 19 charges were postponed indefinitely.

By allowing Small the chance to pay the SuperFresh store in Eldersburg the $495 in bad checks, Circuit Judge Raymond E. Beck Sr. also gave her the chance to wipe the misdemeanor conviction off her record.

Most of the checks were for $20 and $30 over a period of several weeks, court records show.

Small, who was placed on one year of unsupervised probation, has six months to pay the store. Had she been found guilty of all 20 charges, she could have been fined up to $10,000 and sentenced to jail for up to 30 years.

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