Police charge three with scavenger-hunt thefts Fiberglass cow, hundreds of items are found on Carroll high school lawn


Two young men and a juvenile were arrested early yesterday on theft charges stemming from a scavenger hunt in which hundreds of items, including a large fiberglass cow, were found on the lawn at Liberty High School in Eldersburg.

"We don't know how many suspects are involved," said Lt. Leonard Armstrong, commander of the Westminster barracks of the Maryland State Police. "Those who have been arrested haven't given up any other names of those involved."

Police believe the suspects were engaged in a scavenger hunt, scouring the community to obtain items on a list. Other details of the incident were not available.

According to charging documents, state police received a complaint at 1: 21 a.m. that carloads of teen-agers were dumping items in front of the school in the 5800 block of Bartholow Road.

Troopers set up surveillance and reported seeing a dark pickup truck with a tarpaulin covering its cargo area arrive at the school. The truck drove over a curb, went across the grass and stopped on the front lawn.

Blue and yellow cow

Troopers reported seeing two teen-agers unload the large blue-and-yellow fiberglass cow from the truck.

Police said the cow was the property of W. W. Will in the 700 block of Old Liberty Road in Eldersburg. The cow, which has been a South Carroll landmark for more than three decades, had been removed from the roof of a building at the Will farm.

Among other items found at the school were county and state road signs, and property belonging to the Carroll County Board of Education and private citizens, court documents said.

Armstrong said troopers are trying to find out who owns much of the property.

Arrested on charges of theft under $300 were Michael D. Burkhead, 18, of the 900 block of Slash Pine Court in Eldersburg; Jonathan E. Nestor, 18, of the 1500 block of Brianfield Circle of Eldersburg; and a juvenile, who was not named.

Court records show Burkhead and Nestor were released on personal recognizance. The juvenile was released to his parents, Armstrong said.

School is investigating

Randy Clark, principal at Liberty High School, said the matter was under investigation. He declined to say whether the suspects were students at the school.

Clark said it was his first year at the school, and he did not know whether students have held scavenger hunts in the past.

Student scavenger hunts have not been a problem in the county, Armstrong said.

In October 1992, six juveniles were arrested in Columbia after allegedly stealing road signs and a chair from The Mall in Columbia as part of what was described as an annual senior class scavenger hunt at Wilde Lake High School.

Juvenile court records involving that incident were not made public.

Pub Date: 6/06/98

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