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AT&T Wireless Customers Report Issues Connecting to 911

LEONARDTOWN, MD – St. Mary’s County Government’s Department of Emergency Services has received reports that AT&T customers and other cell service providers nationwide may be having difficulties connecting to 911.

Impacted service providers are actively working on this issue. More information will be released as it becomes available.

MD Assembly Considers Reforms To Health-Insurance Coverage

Committees in both chambers of the General Assembly are hearing testimony on a pair of bills to change how health insurance companies in Maryland make treatment coverage decisions. What’s known as 'utilization review' is a process that can be time-consuming and opaque, with criteria that may be set by the insurance company instead of clinical standards. The Senate Finance Committee heard testimony Wednesday on S-B 791, which would require insurers to use expert nonprofit clinical guidelines to make coverage decisions. David Lloyd, with the mental health advocacy organization 'Inseparable,' says these bills will remove barriers to care.

"It puts in place important patient protections to help people get the care they need for their mental health and substance use conditions."

Testimony on the companion bill will be heard in the House Health and Government Operations Committee on Thursday.

The bills would ensure patients can remain on a drug if it has been authorized in the past, and can keep existing drug coverage for 90 days if they change insurance companies. The bills would also require insurers to establish a real-time benefits check, where prescribers can view an electronic health record to see insurance coverage, drug costs and more. Lloyd says this should speed up the authorization process, which can be slow – and harmful to people in crisis.

"Particularly for people who are struggling with mental health or substance use challenges, these types of barriers can be really harmful, and can make it so that they don't ultimately get the treatments that are critical for their well-being."

If passed, the electronic health record system would be required to begin by July of 2026.

Committees in both chambers of the General Assembly are hearing testimony on a pair of bills to change how health insurance companies in Maryland make treatment coverage decisions. 

Death Investigation at Lettie Marshall Dent Elementary School

LEONARDTOWN, MD (February 21, 2024) – At approximately 10:05 p.m. on Tuesday, February 20, 2024, deputies from the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office Patrol Division responded to Lettie Marshall Dent Elementary School in Mechanicsville, MD, for a death investigation.

 

Detectives from the Criminal Investigations Division (CID) and a Forensic Investigator from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner responded to the scene; CID assumed the case. The initial investigation revealed no foul play.

 

The victim of the death investigation has been identified as an employee of the St. Mary’s County Public Schools.

 

Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective David Lawrence at 301-475-4200, ext. 8130, or David.Lawrence@stmaryscountymd.gov.

 

SRO Investigating An Assault At Indian Head Elementary School

School resource officer investigating a second-degree assault at Indian Head Elementary School: On February 20, at 1:36 p.m., a school resource officer at Indian Head Elementary School was made aware of an assault that occurred on the playground during which one student suddenly jabbed another student on the neck with a mechanical pencil. The student sustained a minor injury and was treated by a school nurse. In accordance with MD law, the student will not be charged due to their age. The student does face disciplinary consequences from the Charles County Public Schools. Anyone with information about this case is asked to call Officer Frison at 301-609-3282 ext. 0770.

St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office Deputy Recruit Achieves U.S. Citizenship

LEONARDTOWN, MD (February 21, 2024) – Mina Geric, a dedicated recruit at the St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office, realized her long-held dream of becoming a United States citizen when she took her Oath of Allegiance on February 8, 2024, in Greenbelt, Maryland.

 

Geric's journey to citizenship began when she immigrated to the U.S. with her family from Montenegro as a sophomore in high school. After completing her high school education, Geric earned an athletic scholarship at a D1 college in the western United States, where she pursued studies in Psychology. Her academic pursuits later led her to obtain a diploma in Business through NCC Education in the United Kingdom.

 

Becoming a naturalized citizen was always a pivotal part of Geric's plan. Over five years, she diligently worked towards meeting the eligibility requirements while striving to become a professional law enforcement officer. This ambition led her to join the Sheriff’s Office as a recruit in September 2023.

 

Residing in St. Mary's County, Geric extensively researched the Sheriff's Office and found it an ideal fit for her aspirations. "I read so many good things about how this agency takes care of its people and how the Sheriff is supportive," Geric commented.

 

Reflecting on her experiences at the academy, Geric shared, "The academy is a challenging and rewarding experience; it’s mentally, emotionally, and physically preparing me to serve my community. The level of support I have received from everyone, from the recruiter to the instructors, is something I’ve never experienced before; I know people want to help me and my fellow recruits succeed. Ultimately, I’d like to become a detective, and I feel there is a place for me in this agency."

 

Sheriff Steve Hall expressed his support for Geric's achievement: "One of the most poignant parts for me about Recruit Geric’s story is that she chose to become an American citizen; she raised her right hand and took that oath. I look forward to witnessing her raise her right hand, alongside her classmates, in April when she swears to serve her new country and protect the people in our county."

 

Geric and her classmates are on track to completing the police entrance-level training program at the Southern Maryland Criminal Justice Academy in April 2024.

 

Student In Possession Of A Knife At Henry E. Lackey High School

Student in possession of a knife at Henry E. Lackey High School: On February 20, at 10 a.m., a school administrator at Henry E.  Lackey High School was made aware of a student who was in possession of a knife. The administrator recovered the knife inside the student’s bookbag and contacted a school resource officer who responded to the school. No threats were made, and the investigation is ongoing. The student does face disciplinary consequences from the Charles County Public Schools. Anyone with information about this case is asked to call PFC Barry at 301-609-3282 ext. 0574.

School Resource Officer Investigating Multiple Altercations At North Point High School

School resource officer investigating multiple altercations at North Point High School: On February 20, throughout the morning, three separate altercations occurred inside North Point High School. In two of the cases, two students fought each other and were separated by administrators and the school resource officer. The students sustained minor injuries from the altercation. In the third case, four students assaulted another student. School administrators and the school resource officer intervened, and the students were separated. There were no reported injuries in that assault. The students involved in the assaults face criminal charges and school disciplinary sanctions.  Anyone with information is asked to contact Cpl. Cook at 301-609-3282 ext. 0580. 

St. Mary's County Health Department Awarded $1.435 Million Grant to Expand Services for Youth at School-Based Health Centers

The St. Mary’s County Health Department (SMCHD) has been awarded $1.435 million in grant funding through the Maryland Consortium on Coordinated Community Supports, which is responsible for developing a statewide framework to expand access for behavioral health services for Maryland students. Funding was made available by the Maryland General Assembly under the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future. 

SMCHD’s Maryland Consortium on Coordinated Community Supports award will support the addition of behavioral health services for St. Mary’s County youth at the two School-Based Health Centers (SBHCs) located at Margaret Brent and Spring Ridge Middle Schools. New services made available through this award are expected to begin in the Summer of 2024 and will include onsite evaluation and treatment for behavioral health concerns, individual and family counseling, care coordination and youth mentoring. 

The SBHCs are open to all SBHC-enrolled SMCPS students and employees, regardless of host school, during and after school hours. The SBHCs are also available after school hours for general community members who enroll in the SBHC program. SMCHD provides routine and urgent medical care, rapid testing and management for colds and chronic illnesses, sports physicals, treatment of minor injuries, and primary care services at the SBHCs. Regardless of health insurance, all persons can be seen, and a sliding fee scale is available for those without insurance.

“This grant provides the resources we need to expand behavioral health services for St. Mary’s County youth and grow our youth development programs,” said Dr. Meena Brewster, St. Mary’s County Health Officer. “The investments that the state and our County Commissioners made previously in our School-Based Health Centers are helping us bring additional grants and services to our county. I am grateful for their support, this new funding from the Maryland Consortium on Coordinated Community Supports, as well as the phenomenal work of our SMCHD Clinical Services Division Director Lisa Nelson and other health department team members leading this grant effort.”

To learn more about the Maryland Consortium on Coordinated Community Supports, please visit health.maryland.gov/mchrc/Pages/Maryland-Consortium-on-Consolidated-Community-Supports.aspx.

To learn more about the School-Based Health Centers, please visit smchd.org/sbhc.

Shed Fire Victim Identified; Cause Remains Under Investigation

The victim of last Friday night's shed fire in Avenue has been identified as 26-year-old Joseph Williams Bowles, Jr.

Deputy State Fire Marshals have concluded the fire originated within an 8' x 10 shed in his parents' backyard. While the fire remains under investigation, they have not recovered evidence that it was an act of arson and continue to explore all possible accidental causes. 

At around 11:00 p.m. on Friday, the owners reported their shed on fire, with their son possibly still inside. 

Firefighters arrived and extinguished the fire in under 10 minutes and confirmed a deceased victim was inside.

The Office of the State Fire Marshals continues to work in collaboration with the St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office, which is a standard operating procedure whenever a fatal fire occurs.

Although smoke alarms are not required in sheds, the Office of the State Fire Marshal requests everyone to remain vigilant in installing and maintaining smoke alarms in their homes and practice fire safety, including having an escape plan. "Please take time to ensure the safety of your family and friends by maintaining these early warning life safety devices," stated Acting State Fire Marshal Jason M. Mowbray.

 

Lexington Park Woman Arrested Following Robbery

 On Monday, February 19, 2024, St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office Deputies were called to a disturbance at a business located in the 21000 block of Great Mills Road in Lexington Park, MD.

 

An investigation revealed that a female suspect, Kelli Aaliyah Richardson, 22, of Lexington Park, attempted to steal multiple items from the business. When an employee confronted her, she assaulted the employee.

 

Richardson was arrested and transported to the St. Mary’s County Detention and Rehabilitation Center to face charges for Robbery, Assault Second Degree, Resisting Arrest, and related charges.

Mount Hope Community Center to Temporarily Close for Maintenance on the Communications Tower

The Calvert County Department of Parks & Recreation advises citizens the Mount Hope Community Center will be temporarily closed Monday, Feb. 26, through Tuesday, Feb. 27, due to maintenance on the communications tower.

Normal hours of operation will resume Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2024. The Mount Hope Community Center is located at 104 Pushaw Station Road in Sunderland.

For updates on Parks & Recreation services, park availability, field closures and more visit Parks & Recreation at www.Facebook.com/CalvertCountyParks and follow @CalvertCountyParksandRec on Instagram.

Find information on Calvert County Government services online at www.CalvertCountyMd.gov. Stay up to date with Calvert County Government on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CalvertCountyMd and YouTube at www.youtube.com/CalvertCountyGov.

 

Fatal Motor Vehicle Collision In La Plata

(La Plata, Maryland) – On Sunday, February 18, 2024, at approximately 1555 hours, Troopers from Maryland State Police La Plata Barrack responded to Maryland Route 6 (Charles Street) at Applegrove Court for a report of a serious motor vehicle collision. Due to the circumstances, the Maryland State Police CRASH Team responded to assume the investigation.

 

A preliminary investigation conducted by Troopers from the MSP La Plata Barrack and the MSP CRASH Team indicates a Trek bicycle operated by Gregory Herman (30 yoa) of Waldorf, MD was traveling on westbound Maryland Route 6 at Applegrove Court. At the same time, a Lexus RX operated by Ruby Hughlett (69 yoa) of Waldorf, MD was making a left turn from eastbound Maryland Route 6 onto Applegrove Court. Ms. Hughlett failed to yield to the Trek bicycle on a left turn and pulled into the travel path of the bicycle. Mr. Herman collided into the passenger side of the Lexus. Mr. Herman received serious injuries and he was ultimately airlifted to MEDSTAR/Washington Hospital Center in Washington, DC. Ms. Hughlett refused treatment on the scene.

 

Investigators were notified that Mr. Herman succumbed to his injuries on Tuesday, February 20, 2024. Anyone who may have witnessed this crash is asked to contact Sergeant J. Zimmerman of the MSP CRASH Team at (301) 392-1231 or can email a statement to justin.zimmerman@maryland.gov. The investigation is continuing. (24-MSP-005477).

NAS Patuxent River Announces its 2023 Sailors of the Year

PATUXENT RIVER NAVAL AIR STATION, MD – NAS Patuxent River announces its Sailors of the Year, marking the command’s top Sailors for 2023. “I am regularly impressed by the commitment our Pax Sailors show to their command, their Navy, and each other,” said NAS Patuxent River Commanding Officer Capt. Douglas Burfield. “The Sailors chosen as this year’s Sailors of the Year exemplify it every day. I hope they are as proud of their achievement as we are of them.” The Sailor of the Year Program was established by the chief of naval operations to recognize the superior performance of enlisted personnel, pay grades E-1 to E-6, and emphasize outstanding achievement and professionalism, exemplary personal conduct, command impact, mission contribution, dedication to selfimprovement and superb initiative. The following Naval Air Station Patuxent River command sailors were honored for their accomplishments:

 

NAS Pax River Sailor of the Year – Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Quinton Dotson As Command Climate Specialist, Dotson is sought out by NAS Pax River’s Commanding Officer and Senior Enlisted Leaders for advice and guidance on all aspects of Equal Opportunity. He provides analysis and recommendations regarding all informal, formal, and anonymous harassment and prohibited discrimination complaints to the Commanding Officer while adhering to, and informing of, all changes in the OPNAVINST 5354.1H. He conducted on sight assessments, divisional inspections, and served as the central point of contact for all command climate issues. In addition, he provided CMEO program oversight, assisted and provided advice regarding conflict resolution and grievance redress procedures, provided Command Resiliency Team (CRT) training, and revamped the process in which climate assessments, complaints, POA&Ms, and executive summaries are maintained for NAS PAX River. He was cited for numerous performance and leadership accomplishments over the past year, including: ? reestablishing the CCS relevancy after a 2-year vacancy by processing seven EO complaints, conducted 16 assist visits, 13 CMEO program inspections, and 10 investigation reviews yielding an overall ‘effective’ CCS program on the ISIC assessment. ? Leading 27 CRT members in the survey of 382 personnel, coordinated 21 focus groups, conducted 13 prevention strategy training sessions, and ensured 100% EO GMT completion resulting in FY23 IG inspection gold standard recognition and a 5-52% improvement of 18 protective/risk climate factors. ? Was hand selected as acting Regional Command Climate Specialist, a CPO billet, and successfully led 11 CMEO program managers while advising six Commanding Officers, positively impacting 19 fence lines and 3,763 personnel in the National Capital Region reinforcing a culture of excellence, dignity, and respect. ? Coordinated with Naval Health Clinic, Patuxent River, and flawlessly planned the Influenza Shotex. Led eight Sailors in the administration of 1K immunizations at the base gym resulting in zero mishaps and a 28% increase in force readiness base wide, and led 18 First and Second Class Petty Officers in the delivery of 88 HM EAP trainings to 19 test eligible candidates resulting in six advancements. ? As Navy Ball Committee President led 18 personnel in the event planning and fundraising of $7K for 248th Navy Birthday. Additionally, he is instrumental in raising over $10K through 6 fundraising efforts, 144 coin sales, and 110 ticket sales for 247th Navy Birthday. Authored the POW/MIA, Bell Ringing, and Cake Cutting ceremony script which led to the organization and success of the 247th and 248th Navy Ball for 300 guest from 32 commands. “HM1 Dotson is an inspirational deckplate leader who seizes every opportunity to lead, mentor, and challenge every Sailor,” said Chief Yeoman Priscilla Nelson, Dotson’s department head. “His ability to plan, coordinate, direct, and finish any job while balancing multiple tasks has consistently influenced positive outcomes and is a true testament to his commitment and dedication. He is not only a leader within the climate of the command, but has the kind of talent, drive and potential to eventually lead our Navy’s enlisted force. This program is designed to recognize our very best and therefore, tailor- made for a Sailor of his caliber.”

 

NAS Pax River Junior Sailor of the Year – Personnel Specialist 2nd Class Courage Falayi Falayi, NAS Patuxent River pay and personnel clerk, maintains the financial and service records of command service members, making her responsible to process travel claims, pay entitlements, deductions, payments, collections, and allotment requests for active and reserve components. In addition, she also interprets publications and disseminates information to customers, reviews pay transactions, interprets Leave and Earnings Statements (LES), Master Military Pay Accounts (MMPA), and DOD pay and travel publications. She maintains the Enlisted Distribution Verification Reports, initiating screening for special duty assignments. She is also the command leave administrator, managing the program and having general responsiblilty for all leave transactions processed via e-Leave to include correction and cancellation. She led teams to foster understanding of changing policies, ensuring the outstanding maintenance and readiness of Command Pay and Personnel Administration Program, and meeting command-wide mission requirements. Falayi provided pay, personnel, and administrative support for more than 250 Sailors and 620 DoD/NAF/AF civilians. During the 2023 Inspector General Inspection and area visits, Family Care Plan Program received “OUTSTANDING” rating thanks to her efforts. She efficiently handled all pay and personnel transactions through various systems including Salesforce, Navy Standard Integrated Personnel System (NSIPS), and BUPERS online. She meticulously processed 65 NSIPS pay and personnel transactions, 52 NP2 pay transactions, 18 BAH, five HDP-T, four IA travel claims, 10 travel advances resulting in over $75,000 in payments to Sailors, 48 gains, 32 transfers, and 28 separations and retirement ensuring 100% accuracy on all packages. Additionally, she resolved eight pay discrepancies resulting to $15,000 back pay to service members and as Defense Travel System reviewer, she processed 35 travel vouchers resulting in $30,000 liquidations. Moreover, she coordinated with NAVPTO the transportation of  20 military personnel and their dependents during their transition to their new PDS resulting to a smooth transition. She was cited for numerous performance and leadership accomplishments over the past year, including: ? Planned twelve cabinet meetings and organized series of fundraising events to include 2 Gas and Glass events, Cinco de Mayo food sale, St. Patrick’s Day food sale, Breakfast Burrito sale, and volunteered to 3 concert events raising $3.5k in total for the 2023 Summer Command Picnic attended by over 150 Sailors and family members as the command recreation committee secretary. ? Spearheaded fundraising events for the Navy Birthday celebration at Pax River, including the Cinco de Mayo food sale event, multiple Gas and Glass events, 3 Taco Sale events, and two car wash events raising $7,000 in sales and donations for the 247th Navy Birthday Ball and $10,000 for the 248th Navy Birthday Ball. ? As Command Indoctrination facilitator, Falayi’s proactive approach geared 30 first-term Sailors and 45 new check-ins with best information available in relation to pay and entitlements. ? As the Lead Command Pay and Personnel Administrator (CPPA), she led and managed a staff of two Sailors and one civilian and delivered optimal support and consistent customer service to the completion of 118 PERS/PAY transactions during this fiscal year. Her one-on-one coaching approach ensures that all CPPAs are equipped with the knowledge they need which decreased pay and personnel transactions turnaround time by 50%. “Falayi exemplified the qualities most desired in a Junior Sailor of the Year,” said Nelson. “She is an outstanding junior leader and peer mentor who exhibits the maturity, judgement and drive of a seasoned First Class Petty Officer. She has proven to be fully capable of assuming various assignments and executing them in an outstanding manner. She exhibits the highest standards of professionalism and integrity. Her contributions to the command’s mission cannot be overstated. She has executed the requisite skills to meet command goals and continues to educate herself to become more knowledgeable and more resourceful.”

 

NAS Pax River Bluejacket of the Year – Hospital Corpsman 3 rd Class Chelcey Justiniano Justiniano serves as the Search and Rescue (SAR) Duty Officer, a position normally held by a Junior Officer. During the reporting period, she advised 10 officers and 11 Aircrewmen in the execution of 190 planned flights, 512 sorties, totaling 702 mishap free flight hours. Her expertise and leadership ensured 100% search and rescue coverage for the Naval District Washington area operations supporting 450 critical research, development, test, and evaluation flights across 64 tenant commands. As the SAR Duty Officer for three ITT/ATFP drills she diligently coordinated and disseminated time critical information to Search and Rescue crews, resulting in a prompt response time and enhanced training. She trained 16 Rescue Swimmers, SAR Medical Technicians, and Hospital Corpsmen in basic life saving techniques and triage, increasing the overall mission effectiveness of the SAR division in the event of an actual SAR mission. Her performance directly contributed to the achievement of 100% SAR availability in support of RDT&E operations. Justiniano further maintained individual medical readiness across two navy units of 227 personnel and assisted Naval Medical Training Center Patuxent River by providing 305 patient vitals and physical assessments, increasing medical readiness by 10 percent.  She was cited for numerous performance and leadership accomplishments over the past year, including: ? As command Individual Medical Readiness Coordinator, she tracked medical readiness, processing and scheduling of two flight physicals, 61 PHAs, and various medical compliance reports of 220 personnel across two UICs. Her efforts resulted in NAS Patuxent River now leading NDW at 96% medical readiness. During this year’s Inspector General inspection Petty Officer Justiniano’s Individual Medical Readiness program received ZERO hits/discrepancy and was the only junior Sailor to maintain a command program. ? Volunteered for the NAS Patuxent River Auxiliary Support Force, enabling the base to operate at an increased security posture. ? Her leadership directly resulted in two Squadron Duty Officer Qualifications. ? Maintained critical communications between NAS Pax River SAR and community partners, coordinating missions with Coast Guard Sector Five, Maryland State Troopers, and local First Responders in three joint Search and Rescue missions. “Since checking in at NAS Patuxent River, Petty Officer Justiniano has proven to be a talented and eager Sailor,” said CMDCM Ryan Colosimo, NAS Patuxent River Command Master Chief. “She has consistently shown a level of aptitude and ability as a Hospital Corpsman and Sailor not normally seen within her paygrade. Her capability to take on the responsibilities of a seasoned second class has greatly enhanced the mission readiness, the SAR Department and the readiness of the entire command. It is without question that HM3’s positive impact reaches across all of Naval Air Station Patuxent River commands. Naval Air Station Patuxent River is a better command due to her attitude, leadership, and drive.” 

Public Meeting Announced on Proposed Updates to the Long-Range Transportation Plan & Transportation Improvement Program

LEONARDTOWN, MD – The Calvert–St. Mary’s Metropolitan Planning Organization (C-SMMPO) will hold a public meeting on March 5, 2024, from 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. at the Lexington Park Library, to discuss the Long-Range Transportation Plan and Transportation Improvement Program. This public meeting will also include a Technical Advisory Committee Meeting from 4 p.m. – 5 p.m.

 

This meeting, including the Technical Advisory Committee portion, is open to the public. Community members are welcome to attend; light snacks and refreshments will be provided, and children’s activities will be available for younger attendees. Staff representing Calvert, St. Mary’s County, and the Maryland Department of Transportation will be available to answer questions.

 

On January 30, 2024, the C-SMMPO released draft updates to the Long-Range Transportation Plan and Transportation Improvement Program, and announced the public comment period, open through March 15, 2024. To review the drafts or for more information, please visit: www.stmaryscountymd.gov/pio/docs/2024-020NewsReleaseC-SMMPOPlanUpdate.pdf.

Citizen input is essential to ensure transportation needs are accurately reflected within the region. Comments on the Long-Range Transportation Plan and Transportation Improvement Program should be sent via email to Karly.Maltby@stmaryscountymd.gov. Questions may be directed to Karly Maltby, Calvert–St. Mary’s MPO Administrator, with St. Mary’s County Government’s Department of Land Use & Growth Management via email or at (301) 475-4200 ext. 1507.

For more information on C-SMMPO, please visit: www.calvert-stmarysmpo.com.

Investigation Continues Into Fatal Shed Fire

A joint investigation continues between the Office of the State Fire Marshal and the St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office into the cause of a shed fire that claimed the life of a man Friday night.

Just after 11::00 p.m., firefighters from Seventh District Volunteer Fire Department responded to 37720 River Springs Road in Avenue for a reported shed fire after the owners discovered their 8' x 10' shed ablaze and reported a person was still possibly inside.

Firefighters extinguished the fire in under 10 minutes and confirmed a deceased victim was inside.

Although the victim was transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore to determine the exact cause of death and where the victim will be positively identified, he is believed to be the adult son of the owners, who resided at the home.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation. A joint investigation is a standard operating procedure between the Office of the State Fire and the local authority having jurisdiction whenever a fatal fire occurs.

Man Sentenced to 50 Years in Prison for Murder of 17-Year-Old at Apartment Complex in Waldorf

LA PLATA, MD— Tony Covington, State’s Attorney for Charles County, announced that on Friday, February 16, 2024, Charles County Circuit Court Judge H. James West sentenced Anthony Edward Small, 24, to Life in prison with all but 50 years suspended for First-Degree Murder and the Use of a Firearm During the Commission of a Crime of Violence.

 

On December 11, 2023, Small entered a guilty plea to the aforementioned charges.

 

On November 3, 2020, officers responded to an apartment building located in Amberleaf Place for the report of a subject being shot. Upon arrival, officers located a seventeen-year-old victim suffering from several gunshot wounds to his lower body. The victim was transported by helicopter to Washington Hospital Center, but unfortunately succumbed to his injuries.

 

Witnesses at the scene of the incident reported seeing an altercation between the victim and suspects in a bright blue passenger car, ultimately resulting in gunshots. The suspect who shot the victim was observed entering the front passenger seat of the car before fleeing the area. After the incident, Small’s co-defendant, Tyliek Anthony Spence, spoke to investigators and reported that he was the driver of the fleeing car. Spence told investigators that he arranged to purchase marijuana from the victim prior to the shooting. Soon after Spence and Small arrived, there was an attempted robbery of the victim, followed by the victim getting shot. Spence also described the clothing that the shooter wore during the incident.

 

During the course of the investigation, investigators were able to recover a fingerprint on the passenger side of Spence’s car, which was found to be left by Small. Additionally, Small’s phone records placed him in the area during the time of the incident. He was also seen in photographs wearing clothing that matched Spence’s description.

 

An examination of Small’s phone was conducted. Photographs were observed of Small and the victim’s handgun covered with blood. In a text exchange, Small confesses to his girlfriend about the murder. 

 

Before sentencing Small, Judge West stated that the victim “was just a child. He never really had a chance to better himself for the long run. We’ll never get to see the victim mature.” He furthered that the incident was “the most loss that you could inflict upon [the victim’s mother] for really no reason at all” and that it was a “tremendous amount of harm to bring to someone’s family for no real reason.”

 

On September 15, 2022, co-defendant Spence entered a guilty plea to First-Degree Felony Murder. His sentencing date has been set for March 7, 2024.

Calvert County Board Of Education Closed Meeting Starting Time Changed For Feb. 22nd

Prince Frederick, MD—The Calvert County Board of Education will have an earlier start time for the closed portion of their regular meeting on Thursday, February 22, 2024. The closed session will begin at 3:00 PM. The business portion of the meeting start time remains at 7:00 PM. The meeting will be held at the Brooks Administration Building located at 1305 Dares Beach Road in Prince Frederick, Maryland.

Calvert County Sheriff's Office Incident Report

NOTABLE CASES / INCIDENTS CDS Violation: 24-10565 On February 9, 2024, Cpl. Kelly initiated a traffic stop in the area of Rt. 4 and Old Field Lane in Prince Frederick, for an equipment violation. Further investigation revealed K-9 Atlas conducted a K-9 sniff of the vehicle resulting in a positive alert. During a search of the driver, Josephus Leroy Harris III, 45 of Prince Frederick, several pills were located, along with $300 in US Currency, 2 cell phones, and a snuff container and straw both containing a white powdery residue. A search of the passenger Tevon Anthony Middleton, 35 of Prince Frederick, revealed a scale covered in a white residue, 7 Gabapentin pills, a cell phone, and a baggie containing 2 grams of suspected crack cocaine. A vehicle search revealed a scale with residue, a fourth cell phone, rip-offs containing multiple controlled dangerous substances and a baggie containing 2 grams of suspected crack cocaine. Both Harris and Middleton were transported to the Calvert County Detention Center. Harris was charged with CDS: Possession with Intent to Distribute Narcotics (x2), CDS Distribution, and CDS: Possession-Not Cannabis (x2). Middleton was 2 charged with CDS: Possession with Intent to Distribute Narcotics (x3) and CDS: Possession of Controlled Dangerous Paraphernalia (x2). Josephus Leroy Harris III Tevon Anthony Middleton

 

CDS Violation: 24-10556 On February 8, 2024, Deputy Campbell initiated a traffic stop in the area of Monticello Drive in Solomons, on a vehicle displaying a false vehicle registration and traveling well below the posted speed limit. Contact was made with the driver, Dennis Monte Moore, 27 of Lexington Park, who advised he did not have a valid driver’s license. Further investigation revealed drug paraphernalia in plain view. A probable cause search of the vehicle revealed a large sum of US currency, multiple rolled-up dollar bills covered in a white powdery substance, a plastic tear-off containing white powdery residue, 43 counterfeit Oxycodone pills, and a loaded Glock 17 gen 4 with a high-capacity magazine. A search of Moore’s person revealed a bag containing 30 additional counterfeit Oxycodone pills. Moore was placed under arrest and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with Loaded Handgun in a Vehicle, CDS: Possession of Firearms, CDS: Possession with Intent to Distribute Narcotics, CDS: Possession-Not Cannabis, Possessing a Firearm with a Felony Conviction along with several other firearm charges.

 

CDS Violation: 24-10281 On February 7, 2024, Master Deputy Cress initiated a traffic stop with lights and sirens activated on a vehicle for a moving violation. The vehicle continued traveling for several miles without stopping for deputies. Deputies executed a pit maneuver and a felony stop was conducted. Upon making contact with the driver Jaymen Ryan Greenfield, 38 of Temple Hills, a digital scale was observed in plain view. A vehicle search revealed three rocks of crack cocaine along with Amphetamine and Dextroamphetamine pills. A search of Greenfield’s person revealed $516 in 3 US currency. Greenfield was placed into custody and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with CDS: Possession- Not Cannabis and CDS: Possession with Intent to Distribute Narcotics. 

 

CDS Violation: 24-9969 On February 6, 2024, F/Sgt. McCarroll initiated a traffic stop on a vehicle for an equipment violation along the Calvert / Anne Arundel County line. Upon making contact with the driver, Robert Joseph Fry, 46 of Lothian, who was driving on a suspended license, pieces of copper mesh were observed inside the vehicle. Further investigation revealed, K9 Zeus conducted a K9 sniff of Fry’s vehicle resulting in a positive alert. A vehicle search revealed a glass smoking device with suspected crack cocaine, a Zip Lock baggie containing 6 grams of crack cocaine, 1 metal spoon with crack cocaine residue, a napkin containing small rocks of suspected cocaine along with a metal measuring spoon covered in cocaine residue. Fry was transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with CDS: Possession-Not Cannabis, CDS: Possession of Paraphernalia, Driving on a Suspended License, and Possessing a Suspended License. 

 

Theft: 24-11170 On February 11, 2024, Cpl. J. Ward responded to Starbucks located at 55 Harrow Lane in Prince Frederick, for the report of a theft. Investigation revealed an unknown female entered the store and requested a paper menu. As the employee retrieved the menu in a back office, the suspect fled with a tip jar containing approximately $20-$30 in US currency. The suspect is described as 4 a white female, approximately 5 feet 9 inches tall, with dark brown shoulder-length hair, wearing a black hoodie and gray sweatpants. The investigation continues.

 

Trespassing: 24-9315 On February 5, 2024, DFC Hendrickson responded to Dunn Clean Laundry located at 66 S. Solomons Island Road in Prince Frederick, for a welfare check. Upon arrival, DFC Hendrickson observed a male sleeping in a chair, later identified as Robert Allen Rice, aged 57, with no fixed address. Rice has been permanently trespassed from this location. Rice was taken into custody and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with Trespassing: Private Property. 

Prince Frederick Man Facing Murder Charges

On February 15, 2024, at approximately 10:22 p.m., deputies from the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office Patrol Bureau responded to the area of Armory Road and Fairgrounds Road in Prince Frederick, for the report of a serious assault. Deputies arrived on the scene and located one adult male suffering from critical injuries. Emergency Medical Services responded to the scene and rendered aid to the victim. The victim identified as Shaquille Quadry Braxton, 30 of Prince Frederick, was transported to CalvertHealth where he succumbed to his injuries and was later pronounced deceased. Detectives from the Criminal Investigations Bureau responded and assumed the investigation. Through the investigation, detectives located the suspect Thomas Eugene Harris II, 27 of Prince Frederick, who was taken into custody. Harris was transported to the Calvert County Detention Center and has been charged with First-Degree Murder and First-Degree Assault. Additional charges will be forthcoming. This appears to be an isolated incident. Anyone with information specific to this investigation is urged to contact Detective William Freeland at 410-535-2800 or via email at will.freeland@calvertcountymd.gov.

St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office Investigates Threats of Potential Gun Violence at Spring Ridge Middle School

LEONARDTOWN, MD (February 16, 2024) – On Thursday, February 15, 2024, Deputies from the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office were called to investigate reports of a threat against Spring Ridge Middle School. 

 

Deputies were alerted to a social media post circulating among Spring Ridge Middle School students warning them not to “go to school tomorrow” and indicating a student would be bringing a gun to the school on Friday. Deputies learned a Spring Ridge Middle School student had been asking other students how to obtain a gun, prompting the social media post.

 

Deputies identified the student, contacted the parent of the student, and conducted a search of the residence and the student’s personal items; no gun was found.

 

Per the Board of Education, “All students involved will be disciplined in accordance with the St. Mary’s County Public School’s Code of Conduct.”

 

The investigation is ongoing, and anyone with additional information about this incident should contact the Spring Ridge Middle School Resource Officer, Corporal Chad Hartzell, at Chad.Hartzell@stmaryscountymd.gov.

Crime Solvers Offering Cash Reward in Robbery Case on Dale Drive

Charles County Crime Solvers offering a cash reward in robbery case: Charles County Crime Solvers is offering a cash reward for the tip that leads to the arrest of the suspects involved in a robbery. On February 15 at 2:30 p.m., two males approached another male near Dale Drive in Indian Head, assaulted him, stole his tennis shoes, and fled. The victim was not injured. Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact PFC McCuen at 301-609-3282 ext. 0697. Tipsters who want to remain anonymous may contact Charles County Crime Solvers by calling 1-866-411-TIPS. Tips can also be submitted online at www.charlescountycrimesolvers.com or by using the P3Intel mobile app. A cash reward of up to $1,000 is being offered for the tip that leads to the arrest of the suspects. The investigation is ongoing.

 

Pax River Noise Advisory Feb. 16, 2024

Communities surrounding NAS Patuxent River are advised that noise-generating nighttime testing events are scheduled until 9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 16, 2024.

Detectives Apprehend Suspect on Attempted Murder Charges

LEONARDTOWN, MD (February 16, 2024) – Detectives from the Criminal Investigations Division of the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office apprehended Charles Vernon Russell, 26, of Mechanicsville, MD, on Friday, February 16, 2024. Russell was arrested under an active warrant for Attempted First Degree Murder, Attempted Second Degree Murder, Assault First Degree, and related firearms charges.

 

The warrant for Russell stemmed from a November 26, 2023, shooting outside an occupied residence in the 22000 block of Longmore Street in Leonardtown, MD. No injuries were reported because of the incident.

 

Following his arrest, the suspect was transported to the St. Mary’s County Detention and Rehabilitation Center to await a bond hearing.

Appeal Landfill Outbound Scale Upgrades Scheduled for Feb. 21-22

PRINCE FREDERICK, Md. – Feb. 16, 2024 – The Calvert County Department of Public Works, Solid Waste & Recycling Division, announces scheduled upgrades for the Appeal Landfill that will temporarily impact operations.

On Feb. 21 and 22, the outbound scale at Appeal Landfill will be closed for the replacement of the old concrete deck with a modern steel deck. During this period, the inbound scale will remain operational, but customers should anticipate longer than usual wait times due to the temporary reliance on a single scale for both incoming and outgoing traffic. Landfill personnel will implement traffic control measures to guide vehicles entering and exiting the scale, to ensure safety and minimize inconvenience.

Normal scale operations will resume once the deck installation is complete. We appreciate your patience and understanding as we work to improve services for Calvert County residents at Appeal Landfill and all customer convenience centers.

For more information about solid waste and recycling in Calvert County, visit www.CalvertCountyMd.gov/SolidWaste.

Find information on Calvert County Government services online at www.CalvertCountyMd.gov. Stay up to date with Calvert County Government on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CalvertCountyMd and YouTube at www.youtube.com/CalvertCountyGov.

The State of the Town of Chesapeake Beach, MD

February 16, 2024 (Chesapeake Beach, MD) - During the February 15, 2024, Town Council meeting, Mayor Patrick "Irish" Mahoney presented the 2023 State of the Town. The theme of the 2023 State of the Town is "Serving the Interest of Town Citizens". "When we prioritize what is best for our residents, we prioritize our businesses and our local economy", stated Mayor Patrick "Irish" Mahoney. To view the full State of the Town Report please click here. To view the State of the Town recap video please click here. Key Highlights from the State of the Town: • General Fund operating expense reduction of $782,612 in FY23. • Utility Fund future expense reduction by $1,978,000 by proactively investing in infrastructure upgrades through the saddle replacement project completed in 2023. • Reduction of property taxes totaling $516,765 during this Administration. • Total assets exceed liabilities at the close of FY23 by $50.8M, with $22,300,000 in unrestricted funds of which $10,200,000 is general fund unassigned. • Total net position increased by $2,900,000 in FY23. • Debt reduction in FY23 of $514,086 with total debt reduction of approximately $7,588,624 during this Administration. • Additional $1,600,000 in capital assets acquired in FY23. • Town’s total investment in capital assets, net of accumulated depreciation, as of June 30, 2023, amounts to $32.4M. • Taxable property valuations in Chesapeake Beach increased by 6.2% in 2023, as assessed by the State of Maryland Department of Assessment and Taxation.

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