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In Baltimore City

Board of Estimates OKs $1 annual lease for visitors center

The walls are glass, the roof a distinctive swoosh. The Inner Harbor location is prime. And the rent: $1 a year.

The Board of Estimates voted yesterday to lease the city's new $4.5 million visitors center to the Baltimore Area Convention and Visitors Association for that token amount for 12 years.

The convention and visitors association will operate the center, which is expected to open this month at 401 Light St. The 8,000-square-foot facility will allow the 12 million tourists who visit annually to buy tickets to attractions, make hotel reservations, view an orientation film and peruse restaurant menus in one stop. BACVA will be responsible for operating costs, including custodial services, utilities, security and insurance. The city will be responsible for maintaining the structure.

Man charged in killing was paroled in November

The West Baltimore man arrested and charged this week with fatally stabbing a Cherry Hill woman and attempting to kill her 6-year-old son last month had been paroled in November after serving eight years of a 15-year sentence for armed robbery, city police said yesterday.

Alveate Jerome Wallace, 34, cooperated with parole requirements and was judged to be a good candidate for parole, state authorities said. Police said he is the only suspect -- and robbery was the apparent motive -- in the death of Shella Renee Christian, 42, whose body was found by men arriving to help her move from Cherry Hill to Las Vegas.

Her 6-year-old son Terry survived being cut in the throat, but did not point the investigation toward Wallace. "We got the suspect without the boy, without taking a statement," said Chief Antonio Williams of the detective division.

Homicide victims identified as 27-year-old cousins

Two men gunned down Tuesday night inside a West Baltimore liquor store while trying to flee their killers were identified yesterday as 27-year-old cousins.

Deontae Noel of the 1000 block of Ellicott Driveway and Samuel Diggs of the 1500 block of W. Fayette St. were fleeing two gunmen about 10 p.m. when they ran into Doc's Liquors in the 2100 block of W. Lexington St., apparently thinking they could escape through a rear door, said homicide Detective Marvin Sydnor.

"They were trapped in the customer area that is nearly surrounded with Plexiglas and had no place to go before each was shot multiple times with large-caliber semiautomatic handguns and died at the scene," Sydnor said. No arrest had been made and a motive was unknown, he added.

City offices closed, services curtailed today for holiday

City offices will be closed and some services curtailed today for Lincoln's Birthday -- a holiday still enjoyed by some municipal employees despite the observance of Presidents Day four days later.

Regular trash pickup will take place, but the Quarantine Road landfill and trash transfer stations and sanitation yards will be closed. There will be no recycling or monthly bulk-trash pickup; bulk collections that would have been made will take place Saturday instead. Parking meters must be fed.

Court operations will not be affected, and libraries and schools will be open -- although students will be dismissed early because of employee union voting.

In Baltimore County

Deliveryman unharmed after two men kidnap him

PARKVILLE -- Handcuffed in the back of a wholesaler's truck and driven around by two carjackers for several hours, a deliveryman managed to use his cell phone and help police find the vehicle -- but too late to catch the abductors, authorities said.

About 11:30 a.m., the driver for Triple C Wholesalers, Dwight V. Harrington, 30, was delivering items to a 7-Eleven in the 8600 block of Pleasant Plains Road when the carjackers -- one with a gun -- forced him to the back of the truck and handcuffed him, county police said.

Harrington used his cell phone to call his supervisor and then talk to county police, giving them information on sounds he was hearing -- a train and an approaching helicopter. The information enabled a police helicopter crew to home in on the Lakeland area of Southwest Baltimore and spot the truck on Pierpont Street. Inside was the unharmed driver.

Police said it was not known how much money or what items the carjackers stole.

City teen-ager charged in fatal Parkville shooting

TOWSON -- A 16-year-old Baltimore boy has been charged in the killing in September of an 18-year-old Parkville resident, Baltimore County police said yesterday.

Ronald Deondre Evans of the 2000 block of E. Biddle St. was arrested Tuesday and charged as an adult with first-degree murder and using a handgun to commit violence in the death of Kozar Tyrone Goode of the 8300 block of Arbor Station Way. Authorities believe the motive was robbery, said Officer Shawn Vinson, a county police spokesman.

While walking home the night of Sept. 7, Goode was shot in the back in the 1300 block of Mantle St. in Parkville. He died the next morning at Sinai Hospital.

Evans was being held without bail yesterday at the Baltimore County Detention Center.

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