Suspect in assault on officer is arrested after drug raid


A man wanted in Anne Arundel County on charges of dragging a police officer behind his car for 60 feet and then leading police on a high-speed chase through Severn on Monday was arrested in North Laurel early yesterday on drug charges, Howard County police said.

Two other people were arrested and charged after police discovered a small amount of crack cocaine and drug paraphernalia in a home in the 9400 block of Canterbury Riding about 7 a.m. yesterday, said Sgt. Dave Richards of the Howard County Police Department.

Melvin Avon Thomas, 34, has no fixed address but may be from the Bowie area, Richards said. He was charged with possession of crack cocaine and drug paraphernalia in Howard County and assault with intent to murder a police officer in Anne Arundel County.

The officer, Stephen Torbeck, had spotted Thomas on Monday in a car in Meade Village in Anne Arundel and tried to arrest him on federal handgun charges. He reached through the window of Thomas' car to prevent him from driving away but was dragged 60 to 75 feet before falling, Anne Arundel police said.

Other officers chased Thomas through the Lake Village and Provinces communities and along Severn Road, Ridge Road, Annapolis Road and the Baltimore-Washington Parkway at speeds up to 118 mph, police said.

Officers called off the chase when Torbeck told his supervisor that a young boy also was in the car, which was last seen seen eastbound on Route 197 near Powder Mill Road heading into Prince George's County.

When Howard officers raided the house in North Laurel, Thomas was arrested. He was in custody of Howard police yesterday, pending a bail hearing.

Also arrested were Andre Brendan Flaherty, 36, of Silver Spring and Sylvia Melissa Arawole, 32, of Laurel, who were charged with possession of crack cocaine and drug paraphernalia. Both were in police custody yesterday pending a bail hearing.

Women who seemed to need help rob man after he stops

A man was robbed Monday night after stopping on state Route 32 near the Anne Arundel County line for three women he thought needed help with their car, Howard County police said.

The man pulled over at 10: 25 p.m. Monday and saw two women holding jumper cables standing next to a white Ford Mustang, said Sgt. Dave Richards of the Howard County Police Department.

One of the women approached him, grabbed his hair and put a knife to his throat. The women forced the man to unlock his car and took his briefcase.

One of the attackers was described as white, 20 to 25 years old, 5 feet 8 inches with a medium build, blond hair and wearing a T-shirt with the letters "CK" on it.

Another was described as white, 20 to 25, with blond hair and wearing shorts and a white T-shirt.

Police did not have a description of the third woman.

Pub Date: 8/28/96

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