A case of quick recognition brought a Hampstead man into custody earlier this week when a state trooper -- working on another case -- realized the man he was interviewing was wanted in connection with a Westminster robbery.
Police said that after David Scott Utz, 24, was confronted about the December robbery of the Westminster High's store on East Main Street, he confessed to crimes ranging from assault and burglary to reckless endangerment and animal cruelty.
Mr. Utz, of the 2400 block of Fairmount Road in Hampstead, is being held at the Carroll County Detention Center in two cases, one filed by the Maryland State Police and the other by Westminster police.
His bail has been set at $40,000 full bond in the state police case; it is $15,000 full bond in the Westminster case.
"I had no idea [about the other cases]," said Tfc. Ron W. Cullison of the Maryland State Police, who had been investigating a May incident at the Sandymount park-and-ride where a man had tried to break into several cars and had threatened various people in the parking lot.
After the incident, Mr. Utz was arrested and charged with two counts of having a deadly weapon, having a concealed knife and threatening to injure, having a handgun on his person, three counts of assault, reckless endangerment and resisting arrest.
He had been released on his own recognizance and is scheduled to stand trial on the charges Aug. 25.
"He matched the description of the guy in an armed robbery of December last year," Trooper Cullison said. "One thing led to another and everything came out of the bag."
In charging documents filed Monday in District Court, Trooper Cullison said Mr. Utz told police that in March he stole a semiautomatic handgun from a Fairmount Road resident. About 10 days later, Mr. Utz said he and two companions went on a shooting spree, firing into homes along Jasontown, Adams Mill and Old Taneytown roads in Westminster.
According to Trooper Cullison, Mr. Utz said he and his companions harassed and shot a 13-month heifer in early March, the same night they vandalized a car on Old New Windsor Road.
In addition to charging Mr. Utz with assaulting a store clerk while robbing the Westminster High's store in December, he is charged with breaking into several Fairmount Road homes in May, stealing money, jewelry and knives.
Mr. Utz also has been charged with breaking into the Westminster Church of God in August 1993 and stealing computers, telephones and other electronic equipment. He was charged with reckless endangerment for firing into occupied dwellings.
Westminster City police charged Mr. Utz Monday with breaking into the Main Street Station consignment shop on West Main Street and stealing money out of the cash drawer.
During a bail review hearing yesterday, visiting District Judge Louis A. Becker III refused to reduce Mr. Utz's bail. However, the Howard County judge -- who is temporarily hearing cases in Carroll County -- said he would consider dropping the bail to 10 percent of the current bond if the Department of Parole and Probation recommended it.
He also ordered Mr. Utz to complete a program at Mountain Manor, a substance abuse treatment facility.