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A technician working on the city's 112-siren...


A technician working on the city's 112-siren alarm system inadvertently set off the loud tone alert several times yesterday, prompting dozens of complaints to the Fire Department from residents.

Battalion Chief Hector L. Torres said officials are not sure what caused the alarm -- a remnant of the Cold War that is tested every Monday at 1 p.m. -- to go off. "Something the technician is doing is causing it to go off," he said.

A similar mistake occurred in 1996, when a technician tapped into the wrong circuit, causing the alarm to sound for 10 minutes. Torres acknowledged the noise is annoying, but he said the complaints show that people are not ignoring the warning. "That's what we want," he said.

Man, 22, found fatally shot after fight over handgun

A 22-year-old man was fatally shot last night while fighting with another man over a handgun, police said.

Sgt. Steven M. Krause of the Eastern District said the victim was shot twice in the back and once in the left arm about 9 p.m. during the fight in the 900 block of N. Chester St. He died about 20 minutes later at Johns Hopkins Hospital. His name was withheld pending notification of relatives.

Eastern District officers on foot patrol heard the gunshots, saw a suspect running from the scene and arrested him after a brief chase. A homicide charge was pending, Krause said.

No suspects or motive found in fatal shooting of man

Police reported they have no suspects and do not know of a motive in the fatal shooting yesterdayof a man whose body was found in a West Baltimore alley.

Detective Kenneth Welsh said a man walking through an alley in the 500 block of Bloom St. in Druid Heights about 5 a.m. found the body of Michael Johnson, 33, of the 1300 block of N. Mount St. Johnson had been shot several times at close range, and at least five shell casings were found near the body, Welsh said.

Welsh said Johnson was released from jail this year and had a lengthy criminal record that included drug violations.

State's attorney gets series of raises through term

The Board of Estimates approved a 9.3 percent pay raise yesterday for city State's Attorney Patricia C. Jessamy, increasing her salary from $105,428 to $115,238 over her four-year term.

Jessamy will receive a 3 percent raise Jan. 1 and 2 percent raises each year from 2000 through 2002. The raise is the first for the state's attorney's post since 1994.

The board noted that the salary for city state's attorney ranks fourth among Maryland prosecutors, but Jessamy is responsible for 33 percent of all statewide Circuit Court felony prosecutions, 26.3 percent of all statewide juvenile prosecutions and 37.3 percent of all statewide District Court prosecutions.

Fire leads to evacuation of vocational high school

A small fire on a loading dock forced the evacuation of Carver Vocational-Technical High School yesterday, the second time since Dec. 3 that a fire has been set at the West Baltimore institution, officials said.

School Police Chief Leonard Hamm said the fire was discovered about 11: 45 a.m. He said it was arson, and that his officers are close to arresting a student believed to be responsible for the fires yesterday and last week.

On Dec. 3, a series of fires set in Carver's gymnasium forced out 1,350 students and caused about $3,000 in damage to the building in the 2200 block of Presstman St. No injuries were reported in yesterday's incident, which caused minimal damage, Hamm said.

ESSEX -- The Essex campus of the Community College of Baltimore County is accepting registrations for the school's spring session that starts Feb. 1.

Walk-in registration is available 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday, in Room 214 at the college administration building. Telephone and fax registration also are available until the deadline, Jan. 29.

Information: 410-780-6462.

Fire company in Dundalk to again offer train garden


DUNDALK -- For the 18th consecutive year, Wise Avenue Volunteer Fire Company is presenting a Christmas-season train garden featuring 11 trains and more than 200 animated displays.

The garden, in the fire house at 214 Wise Ave., will be open through Jan. 3, with separate hours for weekdays and weekends.

Admission is free. Information: 410-887-7262.

Pub Date: 12/10/98

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