A 46-year-old felon was convicted this week in Howard County Circuit Court of forcing a woman to drive him from the Columbia Ice Rink to Jessup, where he robbed her and tried to sexually fondle her.
Glenn Vincent Rhodes of the 9300 block of Indian Camp Road, in Columbia's Oakland Mills village, was convicted Tuesday night of kidnapping and carjacking -- each of which carries a 30-year sentence -- and of a third-degree sex offense, robbery, theft, battery, assault and theft charges.
He was acquitted of robbery with a deadly weapon and possession of a deadly weapon with intent to injure charges.
In court, defense attorneys questioned the woman's identification of Rhodes. Defense attorney George Epstein said that when the woman called 911, she told operators that a black man had committed the crime. Rhodes is white.
Prosecutors countered that it was difficult to tell what race Rhodes was because his face was almost completely covered (( with a scarf and hat.
Assistant State's Attorney William Tucker, who is black, wrapped the scarf around his head and asked jurors, "Am I black or white? You can't tell, can you?"
TC Tucker said the woman was waiting for her son at the Columbia Ice Rink in the Oakland Mills Village Center in January and had gone to the grocery store on the other side of the parking lot.
As she neared her car, Rhodes approached her from behind, pressed a knife to her side and ordered her to drive him to Jessup, Tucker said.
Once in the car, he told her he had a gun and ordered her not to look at him, Tucker said.
According to charging documents, Rhodes told her to park at an Anne Arundel County restaurant, fondled her and tried to kiss her. The woman then , leapt out of the car and ran for help.
Anne Arundel police arrested Rhodes after following a trail of footprints in the snow. The weapon and $35 taken from the woman were never found, Tucker said.
Shortly before the attack, Rhodes had been released from prison after serving 15 years for armed robbery, Tucker said.
Pub Date: 8/29/96