Man, juvenile charged in graffiti vandalism


A New Windsor man and a Union Bridge girl have been charged with malicious destruction in connection with the spray painting of "Free Pam Davis" and other graffiti on several Westminster businesses after Davis' trial in Westminster last month.

William Brent Schwartz, 20, and the 14-year-old girl, whose name was not released because she is a juvenile, were charged last week with eight counts of malicious destruction of property, Westminster police said.

The girl was arrested earlier this month and was released to her mother's custody, police said.

Mr. Schwartz was issued a criminal summons Thursday to appear in Carroll County District Court for a preliminary inquiry Aug. 27. He faces up to 60 days in jail and a $500 fine for each count, police said.

No other arrests are expected in the vandalism.

Police charged that the pair spray-painted "Free Pam Davis," "Legalize Pot" and "Hemp" on front of the Carroll County Courthouse, a Pennsylvania Avenue garage door, the walls of a railroad bridge, Caldor's department store, the old Tractor Supply Co., Burger King, Appliance King and Estey Pools in the aftermath of Pamela Snowhite Davis' drug trial in June.

Davis, 48, who became a marijuana rights activist after her first arrest last year, was acquitted June 10 of possession with intent to distribute marijuana, possession of marijuana, conspiracy to distribute marijuana and maintaining a common nuisance.

Those charges stemmed from araid in November on Liberation, her Westminster counterculture store, where the Carroll County Narcotics Task Force seized several pounds of marijuana seeds.

The June trial drew national attention, groups of supporters and protesters who carried banners demanding Davis' release from prison.

At the time, Davis was serving a two-year sentence in the Maryland Correctional Institution for Women in Jessup for a felony drug conviction in an earlier marijuana case. She has since been released from the Jessup institution pending her appeal of the felony conviction.

After the June trial, Davis deplored the spray-painting in letters from prison.

She said Friday that she doesn't know the suspects. She called the incidents "unfortunate."

"I feel really bad that what I call youthful enthusiasm found an outlet that was unfortunately detrimental," she said.

"At the time I thought it was detrimental to the community," she said. "Now it's going to be a situation for these two people to deal with."

Davis said she hoped that as the suspects' cases move through the criminal justice system "that they will be shown mercy and understanding."

"They had some real strong convictions about how they felt," she said. "They used an unfortunate way of expressing it.

"I hope my situation and whatever difficulties the court system had with me doesn't rub off on these young folks."

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