OCEAN CITY – The Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) last week closed two major drug distribution investigations with the arrests of two local residents on various charges.
On Jan. 27, OCPD narcotics detectives arrested Miranda L. Florio, 22, of Ocean City, after a two-month investigation into her alleged illegal distribution of prescription drugs. OCPD detectives obtained a search and seizure warrant for Florio’s Ocean City residence and recovered various items of drug paraphernalia. She was arrested and charged with three counts of distribution of prescription medication and four counts of possession of controlled dangerous substances. Florio was taken before an Ocean City District Court Commissioner and was ordered held on a $50,000 bond before being transferred to the Worcester County Jail.
The very next day, OCPD narcotics detectives wrapped up a six-month drug distribution investigation with the arrest of Chase Allen Martin, 20, of Ocean City. Detectives went to Martin’s Ocean City residence armed with a search and seizure warrant and recovered marijuana, morphine, heroin and numerous prescription narcotics.
Martin was arrested and charged with two counts of marijuana distribution, three counts of possession of marijuana, four counts of possession of narcotic prescription medication and theft under $1,000. He was taken before a District Court Commissioner and released after posting a $25,000 bond.
False Knife Attack Story
Nets Fine, Probation
OCEAN CITY – A Pittsville woman arrested in August after concocting an elaborate story about an alleged knife attack pleaded guilty this week in District Court to making a false statement to a police officer and was sentenced to six months in jail, all of which was suspended in favor of a fine and probation.
Around 9:30 p.m. on Aug. 26, 2009, OCPD officers responded to the area of Old Landing Rd. in north Ocean City in reference to a report of a female victim being attacked by a man with a knife. OCPD officers arrived in the area and located the female victim, later identified as Alexis Marie Turcol, 18, of Pittsville.
Turcol told police she had just left a babysitting job and walked to her car, which was parked on Old Landing Rd. nearby. She told police just as she got to her car, she was attacked by an unidentified man wielding a knife. During the attack, the unidentified suspect forced the victim to go into a nearby marsh where he began assaulting her with the knife, Turcol told police.
The victim told police she fought the victim and was eventually able to escape. Turcol told police her unidentified attacker then fled west on Old Bridge Rd. toward the bay.
Because of the initial circumstances of the attack, as reported by the victim, police initiated an intense search of the area around Old Bridge Rd. in an effort to find the suspect and collect any evidence of the attack. OCPD detectives and the Forensic Services Unit also responded to the scene of the alleged attack to collect evidence.
However, due to various factors discovered during the initial investigation as well as certain inconsistencies in Turcol’s statements, OCPD investigators began to believe some elements of the victim’s story were suspect. For example, OCPD personnel, including members of the K-9 unit and the Forensic Services unit were unable to locate any evidence of the victim’s alleged attacker. Investigators also noted a lack of any physical evidence at the scene, either at or near the victim’s car or the marsh area where she was allegedly led and later attacked.
During the subsequent investigation, OCPD detectives repeatedly questioned Turcol about the alleged incident. Turcol eventually admitted to police the alleged knife attack on Old Landing Rd. never took place and, in fact, was a false report. This week in District Court, Turcol pleaded guilty to making a false statement to a police officer and was sentenced to six months in jail. The sentence was then suspended and she was fined $500 and placed on probation for two years.
Jail Time For DUI, Drugs
BERLIN – A Berlin man arrested on drunk-driving and cocaine possession charges in April after getting pulled over for a routine equipment violation pleaded guilty this week to driving under the influence and was sentenced to a year in jail, half of which was suspended in favor of probation and a fine.
Shortly before midnight on April 30, 2009, a Berlin police officer pulled over a vehicle in the area of Bay Street and Route 113 because its passenger side headlights weren’t working. When the officer came in contact with the driver, later identified as Fred Tindley, 55, of Berlin, a strong odor of alcohol was detected on the driver’s breath and person.
Tindley was put through a series of field sobriety tests and was later arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated or impaired. During a search incident to the DUI arrest, the officer discovered a rolled-up dollar bill with cocaine residue wrapped up inside a baggie of cocaine in Tindley’s sock and possession charges were tacked on to the traffic offenses.
In Circuit Court on Tuesday, Tindley pleaded guilty to DUI and was sentenced to a year in jail with six months suspended. He was also placed on probation for two years and fined $500. As part of the plea agreement, the drug charges associated with the arrest were not prosecuted.
Not Guilty Of Disorderly Conduct
WEST OCEAN CITY – A Berlin man arrested on disorderly conduct charges in November after allegedly unleashing a stream of profanities in a West Ocean City convenience store was found not guilty last week in District Court.
Around 12:45 a.m. on Nov. 30, 2009, Maryland State Police troopers were at the Wawa in West Ocean City speaking with employees when a man later identified as Lawrence Williams, Jr., 29, of Berlin, entered the store and began yelling profanities. Troopers confronted the suspect, who allegedly continued to raise his voice and use profanity for no apparent reason, according to police reports.
Williams was warned, but he continued to yell profanities and raised his voice, becoming visibly agitated. At one point, he approached one of the troopers with clenched fists. Williams, who was reportedly intoxicated at the time, was taken into custody without further incident and charged with disorderly conduct and disturbing the peace. Last Friday in District Court, Williams was found not guilty of the charges.
Pot Yields Fine, Probation
SNOW HILL – One of two Pennsylvania men arrested in Ocean Pines on drug charges after getting pulled over for a routine traffic stop pleaded guilty this week in District Court to possession of marijuana and was fined and placed on probation.
On June 7, 2009, Ocean Pines police conducted a routine traffic stop when a probable cause search revealed suspected marijuana. As a result, Zachary Abraham Clouse, 18, of Temple, Pa., has been charged with possession of suspected marijuana and Kyle Anthony Kiedeisch, 19, of Reading, Pa., was charged with possession of suspected marijuana and possession of suspected marijuana with intent to distribute.
This week in District Court, Crouse pleaded guilty to the possession charge and was placed on probation for one year and fined $300. Kiedeisch received a nearly identical outcome during his trial in August.
Jewelry Store Burglary
Forwarded To Circuit
OCEAN CITY – An Ocean City man arrested in January after allegedly breaking into a Boardwalk jewelry store and stealing thousands of dollars worth of merchandise had an initial appearance in District Court last week and probable cause was found for forwarding the case to the Worcester County Circuit Court.
Around 1:20 a.m. on Jan. 2, Ocean City police responded to the Somerset South Jewelry store on the south end of the Boardwalk in reference to an intrusion alarm. When officers arrived, they discovered the front window of the jewelry store had been completely smashed out and several of the store’s jewelry display cases had been knocked over.
Officers were able to contact the store manager, who arrived on the scene a short time later. While waiting for the store manager, resort police officers were advised a male suspect was being detained nearby on Wicomico Street by employees of the Cork Bar. The suspect, later identified as Donald Anthony Collins, 51, of Ocean City, was in possession of a large amount of jewelry along with a portable display box.
Officers responded to Wicomico Street and determined the jewelry found on Collins was the same merchandise reported stolen from Somerset South Jewelers.
The investigation revealed Collins had been in the Cork Bar earlier in the evening and appeared to be heavily intoxicated, according to police reports. Witnesses said Collins left the bar and returned later attempting to sell the stolen jewelry, but was told to leave the Cork Bar.
A short time later at closing time, Cork Bar employees observed Collins on the street near a soda machine with what appeared to be several small jewelry displays. At that point, Cork Bar employees said they believed the jewelry may have been stolen and detained Collins while they called police. All this occurred around the same time police officers were investigating the break-in at the jewelry store nearby.
Collins was arrested and charged with one count of second-degree burglary, one count of fourth-degree burglary, one count of felony theft from $10,000 to $100,000, one count of felony theft valued at $1,000 to $10,000, along with three counts of malicious destruction of property. He was taken before a District Court Commissioner and ordered held on a $50,000 bond before being transferred to the Worcester County Jail.