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THE BALTIMORE SUN

ANNE ARUNDEL

Alderman helps arrest homeless theft suspect

Annapolis Alderman George O. Kelley Sr., a former city policeman who is running for mayor this fall, helped with the arrest Sunday of a homeless man who was charged with robbing a Glen Burnie couple while posing as a police officer last month.

Joshua Hatch, 20, of no fixed address, has been charged with impersonating a police officer, first-degree burglary, third-degree burglary and robbery, according to Anne Arundel County police. He was being held yesterday on $10,000 bail at the Anne Arundel County detention center.

County police had issued posters bearing Hatch's name and photograph Friday. On Sunday, Hatch and his family contacted Kelley seeking advice, authorities said.

"People who find themselves in trouble still turn to me for help," Kelley said.

Hatch came to Kelley's home with members of his family. They spoke briefly, and Kelley accompanied Hatch to the police station. There he was served with a warrant from the county police.

Hatch was wanted by the police in connection with a robbery that occurred July 30.

According to police, a man falsely identified himself as a police officer and ordered a couple to go into their home in the Glen Mar Road Apartments. He then demanded the man's wallet, removed cash and identification from it and drove away in a Crown Victoria, police said.

Hatch is a suspect in a similar case in Annapolis, said police spokesman Hal Dalton said.

- Annie Linskey

BALTIMORE COUNTY

Two workers at port accused of stealing, pawning stereos

Two employees with a private company operating at the port of Baltimore were accused of stealing and pawning 103 car stereos from vehicles over the past two months, Maryland Transportation Authority Police said yesterday.

Derek J. Crowley, 26, a Linthicum resident and P&O; Ports employee who transported new vehicles bound for export, was charged with multiple counts of misdemeanor and felony theft of Chrysler and Dodge car stereos. Another employee, Stanley Jakubowski, 45, of Dundalk, was charged with two counts of theft.

MdTA police say one suspect pawned the stereos at Fast Cash Pawnbrokers in Dundalk. Detectives said they found some of the stolen units listed for sale on eBay; the items were connected to a Fast Cash account, MdTA police said.

Authorities executed a search warrant on Fast Cash last week and said they found in the company's records that one of the suspects had sold 103 stereos, ranging in value from $300 to $1,800. They recovered some of the stolen stereos and then arrested Crowley on Sunday, MdTA police said. Jakubowski was arrested yesterday, records show.

BALTIMORE COUNTY

Ceremony to mark finish of Beltway project work

A long Beltway headache is coming to an end.

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. and other state officials will hold a ceremony today to mark the completion of a project adding a fourth lane to the outer loop of the Baltimore Beltway southwest of the city.

Construction workers were putting the final paving touches yesterday on the four-year, $67.4 million expansion and repaving project between Frederick Road and Interstate 95, according to a spokeswoman for the State Highway Administration.

For Beltway travelers, completion of the project is expected to end years of construction delays and lanes narrowed by Jersey barriers on what has been one of the most congested stretches of Interstate 695.

Valerie Burnette Edgar, the highway administration spokeswoman, said the projected has added a fourth lane to the outer loop for immediate use and enough space on the shoulder for a future expansion to five lanes.

The project has involved repaving of the three existing lanes and the rebuilding of interchanges, including those at U.S. 1 and Wilkens Avenue, she said. It also includes safety upgrades, new signs and sound barriers.

Burnette Edgar said the rebuilt section of the Beltway carries about 190,000 cars a day - a number that is expected to grow to 270,000 by 2030.

- Michael Dresser

BALTIMORE

10 years imposed in stabbings that killed one, hurt another

An 18-year-old Baltimorean pleaded guilty yesterday to first-degree assault in stabbings that killed one 15-year-old and injured another.

Baltimore Circuit Judge Paul Smith sentenced Donnell Harrell to 25 years in prison but suspended all but 10 years.

Donnell Harrell and his brother, Michael Harrell, 17, stabbed two teenagers outside a carryout restaurant in Cherry Hill in 2003, according to police and court documents.

The Harrell brothers got into an argument with James Hudson and Eric Lecount, both 15 at the time, as they were riding bikes to pick up food. Hudson was stabbed in the chest and died at the scene. Lecount was taken to Harbor Hospital with a head wound.

When police arrived, a crowd of youths pointed out the Harrell brothers as the attackers. Police found two knives on them and arrested them.

Michael Harrell pleaded guilty May 25 to first-degree murder and is serving a 30-year term.

- William Wan

BALTIMORE

Court officials warn public of jury-service phone scheme

Federal officials in courts across the country, including U.S. District Court in Baltimore, are warning the public about bogus phone calls from con artists who ask about jury service in order to steal personal identity information.

According to the warning recently posted on the Maryland court's Internet site, www.mdd.uscourts.gov, the caller - who is not a court official - first berates the person for failing to comply with jury service. Next, the person is coaxed by the caller into revealing information, such as a Social Security number.

"Federal courts do not require anyone to provide any sensitive information in a telephone call," the court's Web posting said. "Most contact between a federal court and a prospective juror will be [through] the U.S. mail."

Felicia Cannon, clerk of the U.S. District Court in Maryland, said yesterday that the court's two divisions, in Greenbelt and Baltimore, were not aware of a similar con hitting the state recently. But she said a similar identity-theft operation was suspected in the region two years ago.

When the court receives a call from a citizen, officials said they check whether the person was on a jury list to make sure there was no internal security breach. Then the caller is told not to give out any information and is told to contact the local police department.

- Matthew Dolan

BALTIMORE

City man, 36, is sentenced to 10 years in theft of guns

A 36-year-old Baltimore man was sentenced to 10 years in prison yesterday for stealing nearly a dozen firearms from an Anne Arundel County sports store.

U.S. District Judge Marvin J. Garbis also sentenced Courtney Edward Cooper to three years of supervised release when he completes his prison term. He had pleaded guilty to being a convicted felon in possession of firearms.

According to the statement of facts presented to the court in Baltimore, Cooper stole 11 firearms from Bart's Sports World in Glen Burnie on Aug. 14, 2003. Law enforcement officers arrived at the store in time to see Cooper flee.

- Matthew Dolan

BALTIMORE

Renaissance Institute to start fall classes Sept. 8

The College of Notre Dame of Maryland's Renaissance Institute is scheduled to begin its fall schedule of classes Sept. 8.

Offering two 13-week semesters of noncredit courses Tuesdays and Thursdays, the institute is open to people who are at least 50 years old. Similar to a learning cooperative, the members of the institute design and teach the classes themselves.

The college is at 4701 N. Charles St.

Information or an application: 410-532-3162.

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