Big Berlin Drug Bust

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BERLIN – Berlin police late last month made a significant cocaine bust when they observed a suspicious vehicle around a business while it was closed and were able to connect the suspect to drug activity in Norfolk, Va.

Shortly after midnight on Aug. 24, a Berlin police officer observed a suspicious vehicle near a business in town after it was closed. The officer approached the vehicle and identified the suspect as Angel Chirinos, 30, of Norfolk. A background check revealed Chirinos was driving on a suspended license and he was arrested.

A search incident to the arrest turned up just over three pounds, or 1.3 kilograms, of cocaine. The uncut cocaine had a street value of over $40,000. As a result of information gathered during the Berlin arrest, other agencies were able to open cases and execute search and seizure warrants on Chirinos in the Norfolk, Va. area.

Chirinos has been charged with cocaine possession, importing cocaine into the state, possession with intent to distribute and driving while suspended. The Worcester County Bureau of Investigation (WCBI), the Maryland State Police and the DEA assisted Berlin police with the investigation. Chirinos was released on August 26 after posting a $25,000 bond. He has a preliminary hearing set for September 15.

Home Invader Off To Jail

SNOW HILL – A Willards man convicted on first-degree burglary charges in May after his arrest in February for an armed home invasion in Whaleyville was sentenced last week to 10 years in jail with all but five suspended.

Tyrone Torrell Camper, 19, of Willards, last week appeared in Circuit Court for a sentencing hearing following a guilty plea in May to a first-degree murder charge from an incident in February when he was arrested for breaking into a residence in Whaleyville. He was sentenced to 10 years in jail with five years suspended and the judge at sentencing strongly recommended mental health counseling. The first-degree burglary charge carried a maximum penalty of 20 years in jail.

Around 8:40 p.m. on Feb. 26, MSP troopers from the Berlin barrack responded to a call for a burglary in progress. The victim arrived at his residence and observed a stranger inside his home and called 911. As the troopers were responding, the Berlin barrack dispatcher kept the victim on the telephone and the victim was able to advise police that the intruder in his home was carrying a handgun.

When the troopers arrived, they observed the burglar, later identified as Camper, inside the residence with the gun. Camper was arrested without further incident. During the arrest, officers found an unloaded gun in his possession. Numerous stolen items were then found on Camper’s person while he was being taken into custody.

The investigation revealed Camper entered the residence through a rear door. Throughout the incident, the MSP officers were assisted by a Berlin Police Department K-9 unit, the Worcester County Bureau of Investigation and the County Sheriff’s Office. Camper was charged with first-, third-, and fourth-degree burglary, possession of a handgun during the commission of a felony/crime of violence and possession of marijuana. In May, he pleaded guilty to first-degree assault and his sentencing was deferred pending the outcome of a pre-sentence investigation.

Spitting At Cops

OCEAN CITY – An Ocean City man was arrested on assault and other serious charges last weekend after spitting in the faces of several resort police officers trying to subdue him after a fight.

Shortly after midnight last Sunday, an OCPD officer on patrol in the area of 28th Street observed three individuals walking east on Robin Drive, one of whom, later identified as Matthew Edward Severe, 18, of Ocean City, was loudly yelling profanities. As the group neared the Pizza Hut on the corner, Severe began yelling at another group of five people on the opposite side of the street. At one point, he yelled “who the [expletive deleted] are you? I live here.”

Severe approached the other group and directed his aggression at one man in particular. He approached the man and swung at him with a closed fist, but he missed and the momentum of the swing caused him to fall on the ground. Police interceded at that point and attempted to place Severe in custody. One officer grabbed his arm and attempted to get Severe to lie on his stomach so he could be cuffed, but Severe rolled back, trapping the officer’s legs under his body.

Severe swung wildly at the officer, but missed him. Other officers got involved and attempted to get Severe under control, but he refused to comply. After an officer hit Severe with a knee-strike to the side, Severe allegedly swung at that officer, missing him but ripping his badge off his jacket.

Severe was eventually taken into custody, but his assault on the officers did not stop. While he was being arrested, Severe looked right into the eyes of one officer and spat in his face. Due to Severe’s combative behavior, he was placed in a violent person restraining device, but that did not stop his escapades, according to reports. When he was being loaded into a transport van, he looked into the eyes of the original officer on the scene and spat into his face.

He was ultimately charged with three counts of second-degree assault, disorderly conduct, malicious destruction of property and resisting arrest.

Alert Citizen Helps Nab

Credit Card Theft Suspect

OCEAN PINES – A Berlin man was arrested this week on theft charges after a joint investigation conducted by the Worcester County Bureau of Investigation (WCBI) and Ocean Pines police connected him to theft of several credit and ATM cards from vehicles in the Pines to purchases throughout West Ocean City, Ocean City and Berlin.

Around 11 p.m. last Tuesday, a resident in South Ocean Pines observed a suspect, later identified as Joseph Brian Moseley, 34, of Berlin, tampering with his parked car. The citizen called police to report the incident and was asked to stay on the line until police arrived in the area. While the resident was on the phone with the police dispatcher, he observed Moseley tampering with two other cars in the area.

Ocean Pines police quickly responded to the area, but Moseley apparently became aware of their presence and fled into the woods nearby. He was apprehended a short time later and taken into custody. Moseley was charged with three counts of theft under $500, three counts of tampering with a motor vehicle and one count of theft scheme. At the time of his arrest, Moseley was also a suspect in a credit card theft scheme and two of the three theft charges against him are related to that incident.

This week, the joint WCBI and Ocean Pines police investigation was able to connect Moseley to unauthorized purchases of gasoline at various locations in West Ocean City using credit cards and ATM cards allegedly stolen from vehicles in the Pines. He was also found to have used one of the stolen cards to make unauthorized withdraws from an ATM machine in Ocean City.

Moseley has been charged with two counts of theft less than $500 and eight counts of using the credit card of another. He was charged on an arrest warrant and is being held in the Worcester County Jail on a $10,000 bond. Anyone with information regarding the thefts is urged to call WCBI at 410-352-3476, or Ocean Pines Police at 410-641-7758.

Broken Tail Light

Leads To Pot Bust

SNOW HILL – Two Virginia men were arrested on marijuana possession charges this week after a Maryland State Police trooper pulled over their vehicle for having a broken tail light.

Around 1:30 a.m. last Saturday, an MSP trooper on patrol in the Sheephouse Rd. area observed a white Buick with a tail light out on the passenger side. The trooper also observed the vehicle cross the solid white shoulder line by half a car length and jerk back onto the roadway.

The trooper initiated a traffic stop and contacted the occupants via the passenger side window. The trooper immediately noticed the odor of burnt marijuana emanating from the interior of the vehicle. A probable cause search was then conducted and a bag of marijuana was discovered at the feet of the passenger, identified as Matthew Fenton, 22, of New Church, Va. The trooper also searched the driver, identified as David Speidel, 22, also of New Church, and found a smoking device and a bag of marijuana in his right front pants pocket.

Both Speidel and Fenton were charged with possession of marijuana. They were taken before a court commissioner and released on their own recognizance pending trial.

Alleged Armed Invader

Charges Made Inactive

SNOW HILL – The third of three men arrested in April in connection with an armed home invasion in Snow Hill had the charges against him put on the stet, or inactive, docket last week, which was the same case disposition for his alleged co-conspirators.

Dontay Lashone Washington, 27, of Pocomoke, appeared in Circuit Court last Thursday to face a slew of charges including armed robbery, theft and assault for his part in a armed home invasion in Snow Hill in April and had the charges against him placed on the stet, or inactive, docket. Washington’s alleged co-conspirators in the crime, Timothy Lee Ayres, 39, of Snow Hill, and Kevin Collins, 32, of Powellville, also had the charges against them placed on the stet docket in separate court cases earlier this summer.

Around 5:15 a.m. on April 5, Maryland State Police troopers and investigators from the Worcester County Bureau of Investigations (WCBI) responded to a residence on Shockley Rd. in Snow Hill for a reported armed home invasion that had just taken place. Once on the scene, investigators interviewed several occupants of the residence, who said three suspects had entered the home illegally.

One of the suspects, later identified Washington, allegedly brandished a handgun, pointed it the head of one of the victims and demanded money. According to the police report, Washington told the victim he was going to kill him if he said or did anything he didn’t like. While at gunpoint, roughly $500 in cash was taken from the victim.

The suspects fled the scene prior to the arrival of the police, but one of the suspects, Collins, was identified by the victims and was taken into custody a short time later at his residence in Powellville. Collins’ vehicle, a 2001 Ford Explorer Sportrac, which was allegedly used during the commission of the crime, was seized as evidence.

Meanwhile, Washington and a third suspect, later identified Ayres, were still on the run and considered armed and dangerous in early police reports on the incident. A short time later, with the assistance of the Wicomico County Sheriff’s Office and MSP troopers from the Salisbury barrack, Washington and Ayres were located in a motel in Salisbury.

Four Arrested For Burglary

OCEAN PINES – Ocean Pines police arrested three adults and a juvenile on burglary charges this week after the suspects were found in a residence by a local realtor.

On Monday, Ocean Pines police responded to a residence in the north section of the community after a local realtor advised them there were four suspects in the home. Pines police arrived on the scene and arrested four individuals including Joshua Eugene Schneider, 18, of Ocean Pines; Corey Thomas Bell, 18, of Ocean City; Aaron Kasey Williar, 20, of Salisbury; and a 17-year-old female.

Schneider, Bell and Williar were all charged with fourth-degree burglary, while Bell and Williar were also charged with possession of marijuana. The three adults were taken before a District Court Commissioner and were released on personal recognizance pending trial.

Cop Brawler Convicted

SNOW HILL – A Bel Air, Md. man arrested on trespassing and assault charges on New Year’s Eve this year at a mid-town Ocean City hotel after fighting with police trying to evict him because of excessive noise complaints pleaded guilty on Monday to second-degree assault and was sentenced to 18 months in jail, all but three of which were suspended.

Just before 2 a.m. on Dec. 31, OCPD Officers Aaron Morgan and Shawn Lindsey responded to the Holiday Inn on 67th Street in regards to the eviction of hotel guests due to excessive noise complaints. The officers met with the hotel manager who told them a hotel guest, later identified as James Gus Asimakes, 46, of Bel Air, was being evicted due to excessive noise from his room and that he was refusing to leave the hotel.

The officers accompanied the Holiday Inn manager to Asimakes’ room and he was told he had to leave by the manager in the presence of the police. Asimakes refused to leave and the OCPD officers informed him he could be arrested for trespassing if he did not leave as ordered.

At that point, Asimakes began yelling profanities at both the officers and the hotel staff. Morgan and Lindsey asked Asimakes several times to leave the room, but when he continued to refuse, the officers attempted to arrest him on trespassing charges.

Asimakes immediately resisted arrest and refused to obey the officers’ verbal commands. He also began to swing his right arm with a closed fist at the officers and struck Lindsey. After a few minutes of scuffling, the officers gave Asimakes several verbal warnings to get on the ground or they would be forced to use pepper spray on him.

However, Asimakes continued to yell profanities and strike out at the officers, who eventually made good on their promise to pepper spray him and subdued him. After arriving at the Public Safety Building, Asimakes continued to use vulgar language and was uncooperative during the booking process, refusing to provide any of his personal information. He was charged with trespassing, resisting arrest, disturbing the peace and assaulting an officer.

This week in Circuit Court, Asimakes pleaded guilty to second-degree assault and was sentenced to 18 months in jail with all but three months suspended. The court agreed to allow Asimakes to serve his time at the Harford County Jail if the details could be worked out between the two wardens. Asimakes was also placed on probation for two years pending his release and was fined $500.

Final OC Robbery

Suspect Convicted

SNOW HILL – The fourth and final suspect in the burglary of a north-end Ocean City residence last May pleaded guilty this week to conspiracy to commit felony theft and was sentenced to 18 months in jail, all but six months of which was suspended.

Ricky Bylan, 21, of Ocean City, appeared in Circuit Court on Monday to face several serious charges for his part in the break-in of a north Ocean City residence last May. Bylan pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit felony theft and was sentenced to 18 months in jail with all but six months suspended. He was also placed on probation for two years and fined $500.

Bylan was one of three suspects identified in the case by a fourth suspect, who gave police the names of his co-conspirators in exchange for a lighter sentence. Joshua Ray, 20, of Ocean City, pleaded guilty to felony theft and was sentenced to 18 months in jail with all but six months suspended, while Eric Hewitt, 19, of Ocean City, pleaded guilty to a theft conspiracy charge in July and was sentenced to one year in jail. The fourth suspect, Douglas Ransley, 21, of Berlin, accepted a plea bargain in December for a lesser third-degree burglary charge in exchange for information about his cohorts and was sentenced to 18 months in jail with all but 14 days suspended.

The incident began when an Ocean City police officer was patrolling in the area of North Heron Drive on May 13, 2007 looking for a reported burglary suspect when he noticed a home with the garage door open and the window to the door broken. The officer noticed liquor bottles strewn across the floor of the garage and an interior door to the residence standing open.

An investigation revealed the house was vacant, but there was substantial evidence it had been ransacked. Two 42” plasma televisions, one in the living room and one in the master bedroom, had been damaged and appeared to have been pulled from their wall mountings. Several drawers and cabinets throughout the house were left standing open with their contents strewn about the floor.  

An investigation outside the residence turned up empty liquor bottles and beer bottles lying in the grass which were consistent with the bottles found in the garage. In addition, two surf boards were found concealed in a grove of trees across the street from the residence. A search of the garage revealed empty wall-mounted surfboard racks.

The officers had plenty of evidence a robbery had taken place, but they still did not have a suspect. A further investigation led police to a parked Ford Crown Victoria parked on the opposite side of the street from the burglarized residence. Inside the vehicle were several cases of beer and more liquor bottles consistent with what was found in the garage. Also found in the vehicle was a boogie board with the victim’s son’s name written on it.

The vehicle was then impounded so crime scene detectives could further investigate it. Around 11 a.m. the next morning, Ransley came to police headquarters to inquire about the whereabouts of his car. He told police he left it in the area of the 7-11 on 120th Street and went to a friend’s house.

However, investigators knew Ransley had not acted alone and when it came time for his trial last December, prosecutors entered a plea bargain with the suspect in exchange for information about his cohorts in the crime. On Jan. 16, Ransley sat down with OCPD detectives and laid out all of the details about the burglary including the names of his conspirators.

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