Alleged Knife Attack

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OCEAN CITY – An Ocean
City man was arrested last week on assault charges after allegedly attacking
three individuals with a knife during a fight.

Around 2:15 a.m. on July
2, an Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officer was dispatched to a reported
fight in progress involving a knife on 75th Street. When the officer
arrived, there was no fight going on, but he did meet with three individuals
who told him an unidentified man had started a fight with them and when the
fight was over, the suspect produced a knife and attempted to stab them.

Each of the victims told
police they were afraid for their lives because the suspect, later identified
as Matthew Edward Severe, 19, of Ocean City, lunged at each of them with the
knife. One of the victims told police Severe attempted to stab him, but he was
able to run away. The others said they did not know who Severe was or why he
was trying to stab them.

The victims provided
police with a physical description of Severe and his vehicle. A short time
later, another OCPD officer located Severe at 59th Street. A witness
told police he was with Severe at 75th Street when he attempted to
stab the three victims. The three victims were brought to 59th
Street and positively identified Severe as the man who had attempted to stab
them with a black folding knife.

Meanwhile, the original
officer met with a witness back at 75th Street. The witness told
police she saw the fight, and that Severe had been trying to start fights with
several people in her building. The witness told police Severe got out a
switchblade and started swinging it at several people. The witness told police
Severe was trying to stab anyone around him.

The witness also told
police she saw Severe throw the knife before he fled the area and led the
officer to the area where the black switchblade was found. One of the victims
confirmed the found knife was the same one Severe allegedly used to attack
them.

Severe was arrested and
charged with three counts of first-degree assault. He was taken before a court
commissioner and later released after posting a $25,000 bond.

Moonlight Flashing

OCEAN CITY – An East New
Market woman was arrested on indecent exposure charges last weekend after
treating an OCPD officer and a couple of teenage boys to a moonlight, water’s
edge topless jaunt on the beach.

Shortly after 3 a.m.
last Sunday, an OCPD officer on uniformed patrol at 61st Street and
the beach observed to silhouetted figures at the water’s edge. According to the
officer’s report, the light from the moon illuminated the two figures against
the backdrop of the ocean and he could see a group of about five individuals
about 45 feet further south on the beach.

Because it is illegal
for any individuals to be on the beach after midnight and before 5 a.m., except
police and town maintenance personnel, the officer approached the two
individuals near the water’s edge. According to the report, the officer used
his flashlight for his own safety and illuminated two subjects near the water.

When he shined his
flashlight on the two individuals, he observed one of them, later identified as
Jennifer N. Garner, 26, was naked from the waist up with only a bikini bottom
on from the waist down. Garner was with another female who was fully clothed.
When the officer shined his flashlight on Garner, she turned toward the light
and exposed her bare breasts to him.

Garner then fled the
scene and the officer gave chase on foot, calling on her several times to stop
running. According to police reports, the officer kept his flashlight trained
on Garner as he chased her for his own safety.

Garner continued to run
and the officer continued to chase her, even after he told her to stop several
times. At one point, she reached down to pick up an object later identified as
her black and white striped shirt. At that point, Garner stopped running and
the officer approached her. He told her to put her shirt on, which took about a
minute and a half, according to police reports, and the officer handcuffed her
at that point. According to police reports, the officer turned off his
flashlight while Garner was putting her shirt back on.

Meanwhile, the officer
questioned an adult male with two younger boys who appeared under the age of
16, according to police reports. The adult male and the two boys, who were both
15 years old, had witnessed Garner’s actions on the beach. The adult said they
did not know Garner and told the officer “you could definitely see.”

Garner was arrested and
charged with indecent exposure and disorderly conduct.

Boardwalk Counterfeiter
Nabbed

OCEAN CITY – A
Pennsylvania man was arrested on possession of forged currency charges last
week after officers observed him on the Boardwalk in the same general area
where he had passed the phony bills days earlier.

On Monday, two OCPD
officers on patrol on the Boardwalk were flagged down by an employee of
Ripley’s Believe It or Not, who told police an unknown suspect had passed a
counterfeit $10 bill at the attraction two days earlier on July 10. The
officers examined the phony $10 bill and asked the employee if they could
review the business’s surveillance tapes from the day of the incident.

The officers reviewed
the tapes of the date and time in question with the employee and were able to
develop a description of the suspect, who was with a woman and child of around
five years of age. A short time later, the officers were called to Souvenir
City a few blocks away about a man passing a counterfeit $10 bill. The clerk at
Souvenir City told police he had been given the heads up by employees at Boog’s
Barbeque, who had just received a counterfeit $10 bill after observing the
suspect coming from Souvenir City.

The investigation
determined each of the counterfeit $10 bills from Ripley’s, Souvenir City and
Boog’s Barbeque had matching false serial numbers. After one of the officers
left Boog’s and headed back to Souvenir City, he observed a man he believed he
had seen in the surveillance video at Ripley’s. The first officer contacted the
second officer, who arrived nearby and agreed the man they had identified in
the surveillance video was the same man they had seen nearby.

The officers detained
the suspect, later identified as Dennis A. Wildberger, 48, of Stewartstown, Pa.
When questioned, Wildberger told police he didn’t know anything about the
counterfeit $10 bills. One of the officers asked Wildberger if he had any money
on him, and the suspect produced a wad of cash. When the officer started going
through the wad of cash, he immediately identified another one of the
counterfeit $10 bills, at which point Wildberger allegedly said, “On second
thought, I’d rather you not go through my money.”

Wildberger was arrested
and charged with knowingly possessing with unlawful intent counterfeit U.S.
currency and knowingly issuing counterfeit U.S. currency. In addition, he was
charged with theft under $100 for allegedly stealing candy from Ripley’s.

Alleged Condo Burglar
Arrested

OCEAN CITY – A Salisbury
man was arrested on first-degree burglary and other charges last week after
Ocean City Police were able to connect him to a break-in last January during
which he allegedly stayed in an unoccupied resort condo for several days on a
drinking binge.

Back on Nov. 10, 2009,
an OCPD officer responded to the area of 74th Street for an
allegedly despondent individual, who later told the officer he had broken into
a residence on 78th Street and had been staying there over the
previous three or four days drinking alcohol in the unit. The officer went to
the 78th Street area and found the unit in question with its rear
sliding door open.

The officer looked in
the unit and observed numerous vodka bottles and beer cans on the kitchen
counter and it became apparent he had found the unit to which the suspect,
later identified as James Dewey Adkins, 41, of Salisbury, had referred. The
officer went inside and discovered a case of Beck’s beer along with a bottle of
rum and a bottle of tequila had been consumed.

The officer then went to
the second floor and discovered a locked closet had been broken into with
several items scattered throughout the hallway. The officer also noted in his
report it appeared the beds in the unit had been slept in. On the bottom floor,
the officer noticed the rubber tubing around the front door in the area of the
lock had been sliced open consistent with a slice made by a plastic card to
gain entrance to the unit.

Later in the day, the
officer made contact with the unit’s owner who said no one had permission to be
in the residence. The owner also said the Beck’s beer and the vodka and tequila
had been locked in the upstairs closet and identified the brands of the liquor.

No charges were
immediately filed against Adkins nor was he arrested as the investigation
continued. On March 25, an OCPD crime technician confirmed Adkins’ fingerprints
were on a soft drink can collected from the burglarized unit as evidence. An
arrest warrant was sworn out for Adkins and he was located and arrested last
week. He has been charged with first-, third- and fourth-degree burglary along
with theft and malicious destruction of property.

Sprinklers Thwart Hotel
Fire

OCEAN CITY – A potential
disaster was averted last week when the sprinkler system at a midtown resort
hotel extinguished a fire in one of the rooms.

Around 10 a.m. last
Friday, the Ocean City Fire Department was dispatched to the Holiday Inn on 66th
Street for a reported fire alarm activation. First arriving units were advised
of a smoke condition on the sixth floor by building management and the call was
upgraded to a building fire.

Fire crews discovered a
fire inside unit 627, but the blaze had already been extinguished by the
building’s fire sprinkler system and the use of a fire extinguisher by hotel
staff. Fire crews remained on the scene for approximately one hour for overhaul
operations.

Investigators from the
Office of the Fire Marshal determined the fire originated on a stove in unit
627 and its cause was listed as accidental. There were no fire-related injuries
reported. According to the Fire Marshal’s Office, the building’s management was
able to quickly re-occupy the hotel due to the quick notification of the fire
by the building’s fire alarm system and the exceptional fire containment
provided by the building’s fire sprinkler system.

Jail Time For Car Thief

SNOW HILL – A local man
arrested in May for allegedly stealing two vehicles in one day pleaded guilty
this week in District Court to one count of unlawful taking of a motor vehicle
and was sentenced to two years in jail.

Shortly before 7 p.m. on
May 31, Berlin Police responded to a reported property damage hit-and-run
accident on Branch Street. The investigation revealed a dark-colored Hummer H3
with Delaware tags had struck a wooden fence on Branch Street before fleeing
the area.

Further investigation
revealed the Hummer had been reported stolen earlier in the day from Dover,
Del. and the alleged car thief had been identified as Michael Carey II, 29, of
Berlin. Descriptions of the stolen Hummer and the suspect were then broadcast
to area law enforcement agencies.

About 7:50 p.m. on the
same day, a Worcester County Sheriff’s Deputy on patrol on Seahawk Rd. stopped
a Toyota truck driven by Carey. The investigation revealed the Toyota truck
Carey was driving had been taken from a residence on Fassitt Lane off Route 611
without the owner’s permission.

A short time later, a
Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) officer located the Hummer stolen from
Delaware at a business on Route 611 across from Fassitt Lane. Carey was
arrested and charged with unlawful taking of a motor vehicle, failure to stop
at an accident involving property damage, driving on a revoked license and
numerous traffic violations.

This week in District
Court, Carey pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful taking of a motor vehicle
and was sentenced to two years in jail and fined $200. The other charges
against him were dropped as part of the plea arrangement.

Bike Thief Guilty

OCEAN CITY – A Delaware
man arrested in May for swiping a bicycle in West Ocean City because he was
“tired of walking” pleaded guilty last week in District Court to theft under
$100 and was placed on probation and fined.

Around 1:20 p.m. on May
27, the Maryland State Police received a call about a stolen bicycle. The
victim told police she saw an identified man take the bicycle from her property
on Old Bridge Rd. in West Ocean City without her permission. The victim
provided police with a description of the suspect and the stolen bicycle, which
was broadcast to local law enforcement agencies.

About 15 minutes later,
a Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) officer reported he had located the
possible suspect and the stolen bicycle at St. Louis Ave. and North Division
Street in Ocean City. The officer identified the suspect as Ethan Cord Truitt,
18, of Georgetown, Del.

Meanwhile, the MSP
officer who handled the original complaint heard from a witness who said he saw
the suspect take the bicycle from the victim’s residence and start riding it
down Old Bridge Rd. while carrying a skateboard. The witness told police he
called for the suspect to stop, but the suspect dropped the skateboard and
continued down Old Bridge Rd. on the stolen bicycle.

Shortly after 2 p.m.,
the MSP trooper transported the victim and the witness to the area in Ocean
City where Truitt was being detained and they positively identified the suspect
as the individual who had stolen the bicycle. According to police reports,
Truitt apologized to the victim and told her he stole the bike “because he was
tired of walking.”

The stolen bicycle was
returned to its rightful owner and Truitt was arrested and charged with theft
under $100. Last week, Truitt pleaded guilty and was placed on probation for
one year and fined $300.

Pot Dealer Convicted

SNOW HILL – A Salisbury
man arrested on marijuana charges in November after a routine traffic stop in
West Ocean City pleaded guilty last week in Circuit Court to possession with
intent to distribute and was sentenced to two years in jail, most of which was
suspended in favor of probation and a fine.

Around 1:17 a.m. on Nov.
18, 2009, a Maryland State Police trooper on routine patrol stopped a 1993
Oldsmobile Cutlass on Route 50 at Inlet Isle Lane. Upon making contact with the
driver, identified as Henry Lee Coleman, Jr., 20, of Salisbury, the trooper
detected the odor of burnt marijuana.

A subsequent search of
the vehicle turned up an undisclosed amount of marijuana and a glass-smoking
device. In addition, a black digital scale was also seized from the vehicle.
Last week in Circuit Court, Coleman pleaded guilty to possession with intent to
distribute marijuana and was sentenced to two years in jail. All but four
months of the sentence was then suspended and Coleman was placed on probation
for 18 months and fined $500.

 

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