Woman, 2 students fight with schools police officer

A woman and two students - one of whom is the woman's son - had an altercation with a school police officer yesterday at Maritime Industries Academy in West Baltimore, according to city schools officials. The incident occurred shortly before 1 p.m. at the school, which is in a strip mall on North Avenue, according to schools spokeswoman Edie House. The officer suffered minor bruising to his hand, House said. Both students were taken to the Department of Juvenile Services, while the mother was taken to Central Booking and Intake Center, House said. Their names were not released, and details of the incident were unavailable. The incident was the most recent of several violent episodes that have occurred on school grounds since August, including last month's fatal stabbing of a student.


Brent Jones

Board of Public Works OKs dredging request


The state Board of Public Works approved yesterday a request to dredge 2 1/2 -foot-deep channels leading into and out of a Crownsville-area inlet known as Fox Creek. The decision, which ends a six-year neighborhood dispute, grants a wetlands license to a group of 18 residents who think the dredging will improve boat access to the Severn River and improve oxygen levels in the creek. Officials from the state Department of the Environment and the Severn River Commission opposed the dredging, saying it could degrade water quality, destroy aquatic vegetation and damage habitat for turtles and fish. The wetlands license allows maintenance dredging for three years, pending water-quality tests that show no environmental harm to the creek, said Gov. Martin O'Malley, who heads the board. Dredging proponents would have to reimburse the state for those tests and stop dredging if water quality worsens, he said. The board followed the recommendation of its wetlands administration staff, which found evidence of boating access from Fox Creek to the Severn River before 1972. State law allows dredging along a waterway as long as it was at least 3 feet deep before that time.

Susan Gvozdas, special to The Baltimore Sun

Va. mortgage firm ordered to halt phone solicitations

The Howard County Office of Consumer Affairs has issued a cease-and-desist order to a Virginia-based mortgage company that has been making telephone solicitations to government employees for reduced-rate mortgages, the county announced yesterday. M&S; Financial is not licensed in Maryland as a mortgage or consumer loan lender and had been using an automated dialing system that left recorded messages on employees' office phones, according to the county government. It is against state law for businesses to offer or provide such loans without obtaining a license from the Maryland Division of Financial Regulation, according to the county. The order prohibits the business from making loan offers in Howard until it has obtained the license. It is also prohibited from making solicitation phone calls in the county with an automated dialing system. Each violation could mean a $500 fine.

Tyeesha Dixon

Wachovia donates funds to foreclosure prevention

The Wachovia Foundation has donated $10,000 to support a foreclosure-prevention program run by Neighborhood Housing Services of Baltimore, the nonprofit group has announced. NHS began offering emergency bridge loans this year to assist homeowners who have been the victims of predatory or exotic lending, or who were hit with emergencies such as illness or unemployment, said marketing director Alicia Schuller. Eligible low- to moderate-income homeowners can receive up to $5,000 in deferred loans. Information: 410-327-1200

Liz F. Kay


Hunter who fell into ravine rescued by medevac team

A hunter who slipped on ice and fell into a ravine Sunday in Western Maryland was rescued by a team in a state police helicopter that hoisted him to safety, authorities said. About 4:30 p.m., the helicopter was dispatched from Cumberland after receiving a report of an injured hunter in a wooded area in Westernport. Donald Wilson, 60, had fallen about 20 feet off a cliff and suffered broken bones and exposure to the cold. Rescue workers had managed to reach him on the ground, but they couldn't remove him by ground transport because of safety concerns, state police said. The helicopter crew put Wilson in a rescue basket and hoisted him into the hovering aircraft. Wilson was flown to a nearby field, where he was transferred to another medevac helicopter, which had flown from Frederick and was better configured to transport the patient after the rescue. The second helicopter flew Wilson to Cumberland Memorial Hospital for treatment.

Gus G. Sentementes