Southeast Baltimore rowhouse fire injures three

The Baltimore Sun

Three people were injured in a fire at a Southeast Baltimore rowhouse just before midnight yesterday. The fire might have been caused by combustible materials too close to a heat source, said Kevin Cartwright, a Fire Department spokesman.

Firefighters arrived at the house in the 600 block of Savage St. about 11:55 p.m. and found the stairwell and second-floor hall engulfed in fire and smoke, Cartwright said.

Two people -- a woman in a wheelchair and a man -- were trapped in a second-floor room, he said. Both were burned, and the man had a heart attack, he said. Both were taken to Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, where they are in critical condition, Cartwright said. The third victim had minor injuries and refused medical help.

The victims' names were not immediately available yesterday. Cartwright said the fire was extinguished by 12:25 a.m.

The fire remains under investigation, Cartwright said.

Annie Linskey


: Litigation

Kin fatally shot by police, family sues

The family of a 39-year-old man who was fatally shot by Baltimore police last summer filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against the department yesterday, seeking $75 million in damages, court documents show.

On Aug. 4, 2006, Ernest Oliver was shot by a Baltimore police officer. Police said four officers searching for people wanted on outstanding warrants came upon a suspected drug transaction and chased Oliver. Believing he was armed, an officer shot Oliver, police said, saying later they found drugs but no gun.

The lawsuit, filed in Baltimore Circuit Court, was brought by Oliver's brother, mother, and two women who are mothers of his children. Filed by attorney A. Dwight Pettit, the lawsuit claims that the officer -- identified as David Diener -- shot Oliver in the back, though he was running away and was unarmed.

Diener joined the department on July 17, 2003, police said.

Noting pending litigation, Matt Jablow, a police spokesman, declined to comment.

Gus G. Sentementes


Gregory set to take reins at Coppin State

Sadie Gregory will take over as interim president of Coppin State University in June, succeeding Stanley F. Battle, who is leaving to become chancellor of North Carolina A&T; State University.

Gregory is provost and vice president of academic affairs at Coppin State. The university is looking for a permanent successor for Battle, and a search committee expects to finish its work this fall.

Battle's last day is June 5 and Gregory will step in the next day, officials said.

Associated Press


Run, walk to aid victims of crime

The seventh Crime Victim's Fund Run and Walk, sponsored by the city state's attorney's office, will be held tomorrow at Patterson Park, with proceeds going to help people who have been victimized by crime. The event is to start at 9 a.m. in the park, 2601 E. Baltimore St., and includes a 5K run or walk or a 1-mile walk. The first 400 people to register receive a free T-shirt, and a post-race party with refreshments and prizes is planned. Entry fees are $20 by today and $25 tomorrow. Information or registration locations: 410-396-1897, or www.

Carroll County

: New Windsor

Body discovered near railroad tracks

A Maryland Midland Railway worker discovered the body of a man lying alongside the railroad tracks in New Windsor about 8 a.m. yesterday, a spokesman for the Carroll County Sheriff's Office said.

There were no visible signs of trauma. The body was taken to the medical examiner's office in Baltimore for an autopsy and a toxicology report, police said.

The sheriff's office is withholding the victim's name until his family is notified.

Laura McCandlish

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