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Two charged in robbery, assault near Columbia playground

Two Columbia teens face charges in connection with the robbery and assault of a man near an East Columbia playground this week, according to Howard County police. 

James Wilson Small, 19, of the 8800 block of Flowerstock Row, faces second-degree assault, robbery and theft charges in connection with the Sept. 10 crime, which occurred near a playground located in the 5500 block of Lightspun Lane.

A 15-year-old girl has also been arrested, but is being charged as an adult, according to police. 

According to Small's charging documents, at approximately 5 p.m. on Sept. 10 a man, believed to be Small, approached the victim and took his cell phone. The victim reported he was then punched several times by Small and two others before they fled, police said. 

As the victim and police were driving in the neighborhood, the victim identified Small as the assailant while he was participating in a basketball game on an outdoor court on Lambskin Lane, according to the documents.

Small was placed under arrest and taken to police headquarters, where he confessed to his role in the crime, according to the documents. 

The 15-year-old girl was arrested on Sept. 11, police said. Police said the investigation is ongoing. 

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