Body Identified

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SALISBURY — Salisbury Police this week released the name of an individual found deceased in a parking garage stairwell on Monday.

Around 7:48 a.m. on Monday, Salisbury Police responded to a parking garage on South Division Street for a report of an unattended death. A passerby located the deceased individual in a stairwell in the garage and reported it to city officials. Salisbury Emergency Medical Services responded and located the individual, later identified as Theodore Thatcher Belfit, 31, of no known address, and notified police.

Salisbury Police investigated and observed no signs of trauma or foul play. The medical examiner arrived and submitted the body to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner for an autopsy to determine the cause of death.

Phony Car Wash Scam Reported

WEST OCEAN CITY — Maryland State Police (MSP) is looking this week for the suspects involved in a theft scheme in West Ocean City involving a phony car washing and waxing offer.

Around 10:20 a.m. on Wednesday, Maryland State Police troopers received a 911 call about a theft that had just occurred in a West Ocean City neighborhood in broad daylight. The victims told police two African-American male suspects knocked on their front door and asked if they could wash and wax the victim’s vehicle.

When the victim said thanks, but no thanks, the two suspects approached the victim’s car anyway, opened the door and removed several items including the victim’s wallet. As the victim began to exit the vehicle, the two suspects fled on foot toward a late model, dark in color Jeep. Troopers arrived and canvassed the area for the suspects and the Jeep to no avail. Anyone with information about the suspects or the vehicle is urged to contact the MSP Berlin barrack at 410-641-3101.

Traffic Stop Yields Pot Bust

BERLIN — A Millsboro Del. woman was arrested on marijuana possession charges last week after a routine traffic stop near Ocean Pines.

Around 9:25 p.m. last Saturday, a Maryland State Police trooper pulled over a vehicle on Route 589 near Manklin Creek Rd. for a tag lamp violation. Upon contact with the driver, identified as Kimberly M. Powell, 51, of Millsboro, the trooper detected the odor of burnt marijuana coming from the vehicle.

A probable cause search resulted in the discovery of over 20 grams of marijuana. Powell was arrested and charged with possession of marijuana and paraphernalia. She was taken before a District Court Commissioner and later released on her own recognizance.

Another Weed Bust

BERLIN — An Essex, Md. woman was arrested on marijuana possession charges last week after a Maryland State Police trooper stopped to assist with her disabled vehicle on Route 113 in Berlin.

Shortly after 9 p.m. last Friday, a Maryland State Police trooper stopped for a disabled vehicle on Route 113. Upon approaching the vehicle, the trooper detected the odor of burnt marijuana emanating from the passenger compartment. The driver, identified as Cynthia Elizabeth Nicole Mullins, 22, of Essex, was then placed under arrest for possession of marijuana and paraphernalia.

Jail Time For Scooter Assault

OCEAN CITY — A Pennsylvania man arrested in October on first-degree assault and other serious charges after firing a full beer can at a motor scooter on Baltimore Ave., causing the rider to crash and suffer serious injuries, pleaded guilty this week in District Court to reckless endangerment and was sentenced to a year in jail, most of which was suspended in favor of a fine, probation and restitution to the victim.

Around 2 a.m. on Oct. 10, 2010, an OCPD officer on marked patrol heading north in the area of 26th Street observed a yellow motor scooter sliding into the intersection of Baltimore Ave. and 27th Street. The officer observed the driver of the scooter walking south on the sidewalk away from the area where the scooter had come to rest.

The officer observed the victim was bleeding heavily from numerous scrapes, cuts and abrasions on his hands, palms, legs, feet and ankles, according to the officer’s report. At that point, the victim laid down on the sidewalk near the officer and yelled in pain. The victim told police as he was heading north on his scooter on Baltimore Ave. near 26th Street, an unidentified individual in a parked pick-up truck threw a beer can at him.

The victim told police the beer can did not strike him, but did cause him to swerve in an effort to avoid it. The victim told police he lost control of the scooter as a result and the scooter fell over and skidded across the roadway and into the intersection. Ocean City paramedics were called to the scene and the victim was transported to the hospital for treatment of his multiple injuries.

While police were interviewing the victim, they observed a crowd of people at a pick-up truck in front of a nearby motel and the crowd dispersed when the officers approached them. However, three returned and told police one of their friends had thrown the beer can at the victim on the scooter and said the suspect was staying in nearby hotel.

Ocean City police went to the room in question and met with several individuals inside, one of whom provided a name of the suspect, later identified as Justin R. Vattilano, 23, of West Grove, Pa. The officers called Vattilano and determined he was staying at a separate motel on 17th Street. Vattilano was reached by phone and agreed to meet with police. Initially, he denied throwing the beer at the motor scooter rider, but eventually admitted it, telling police, “I was stupid, I’m drunk.” Vattilano was arrested and charged with first- and second-degree assault, reckless endangerment and other charges.

On Wednesday, Vattilano pleaded guilty to reckless endangerment and was sentenced to a year in jail, all but one month of which was suspended.  He was then placed on probation for two years upon release, fined $500 and ordered to pay nearly $2,259 in restitution to the victim.

Caught In Mall Parking Lot

SALISBURY — A Delmar man was arrested on fleeing and eluding charges last weekend after ditching a Wicomico County Sheriff’s deputy attempting to pull him over in a mall parking lot.

Around 3 p.m. last Saturday, a Wicomico County Sheriff’s deputy attempted to stop a vehicle for a traffic violation on Route 13 near the Centre at Salisbury. Instead of pulling over, the driver, later identified as Thomas Bradfield, 39, of Delmar, turned into the mall parking lot in an apparent attempt to elude the officer.

The deputy followed with his emergency lights and siren activated, but Bradfield continued to elude the tailing police vehicle through the crowded mall parking lot. After several turns, Bradfield attempted to leave the mall lot, but found himself trapped in the congested parking lot, which forced him to stop and allowed the deputy to box him in with his patrol vehicle.

Once he had Bradfield contained, the deputy determined the suspect’s license was suspended, which is why he attempted to avoid getting pulled over. The deputy also learned Bradfield had been arrested for driving on a suspended license in February and was out on bond awaiting trial for that case. He was arrested and ordered held on a $25,000 bond.

Stolen Farm Equipment Recovered

BERLIN — Two local men were arrested on felony theft charges this week after allegedly stealing a truckload of farm equipment from a property in Snow Hill and attempting to sell it for scrap.

Around 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Maryland State Police troopers received a 911 call from a concerned resident reporting a vehicle leaving a residential community with a trailer full of farm equipment. The caller believed the equipment on the trailer had been stolen and provided to police a description of the vehicle and its occupants.

Troopers broadcasted a description of the vehicle and its last known direction of travel. After a few more phone calls, it was learned the suspect vehicle was located at Allstate Salvage in Somerset County, where the suspects, later identified as Aaron Patrick Poulson, 36, of Snow Hill, and Anthony Davis, 27, of Girdletree, were attempting to sell the equipment as scrap for cash.

Poulson and Davis were detained at the scene. Further investigation revealed the suspects had asked to borrow the equipment from the victim, but when the victim refused, they allegedly decided to steal the farm items and sell them as scrap for cash. Both suspects were charged with theft over $1,000. They were taken before a court commissioner and released pending trial. The equipment was returned to the victim in good condition and in working order.

Suspended Sentence For Crack Conviction

SNOW HILL — A Pocomoke man arrested last September on various drug charges after police observed him in a West Ocean City convenience store with a joint behind his ear in plain view pleaded guilty this week in District Court to possession of crack cocaine and was sentenced to one year in jail, which was then suspended in favor of probation and a fine.

Around 11:20 p.m. on Sept. 17, 2010, a Maryland State Police trooper was in the Wawa convenience store on Route 50 in West Ocean City when he observed a suspect, later identified as Tyrone Scruggs, 26, of Pocomoke, with a partially burned marijuana cigarette tucked behind his ear in plain view. The trooper arrested Scruggs for possession of marijuana, and during a subsequent search found a baggie containing crack cocaine and powder cocaine on his person and additional charges were tacked on.

This week in District Court, Scruggs pleaded guilty to possession of crack cocaine and was sentenced to a year in jail, which was then suspended. Scruggs was then placed on probation for two years and fined $200.

Smoking At School

BERLIN — A 17-year-old juvenile from Ocean City was arrested on drug possession charges this week after police observed him smoking marijuana behind Stephen Decatur High School in Berlin.

Around 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Maryland State Police troopers received a citizen complaint about two individuals possibly smoking marijuana in the parking lot at the McDonalds in Berlin. The witness told police two individuals were in a black Honda passenger car smoking a blue pipe.

The citizen continued to observe the vehicle as it proceeded to the rear parking lot at Stephen Decatur. When police arrived, the vehicle was located at the school parking lot with one suspect still inside. The trooper detected the odor of burnt marijuana as he approached the vehicle and also observed a blue pipe consistent with the description provided by the witness in the console of the vehicle.

The suspect, a 17-year-old juvenile from Ocean City, was arrested on possession charges and transported to the MSP Berlin barrack for processing before being released to a parent.

Drug Conviction Nets Probation, Fine

SNOW HILL — An Ocean City man arrested on various drug charges and an unauthorized use of a motor vehicle charge in November after returning to a Berlin residence from whence he took the vehicle without the owner’s permission pleaded guilty this week in District Court to possession of oxycodone and was sentenced to 18 months in jail, which was then suspended in favor of probation and a fine.

Around 12:40 a.m. Nov. 20, 2010, Maryland State Police troopers responded to a residence on Pintail Lane in Berlin for an unauthorized use of the motor vehicle complaint. During the investigation, it was learned the suspect, identified as David Kyle Edwards of Ocean City, was also wanted by the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office.

When Edwards showed up at the residence to return the vehicle, the owner called the Maryland State Police Berlin barrack and troopers responded. A probable cause search revealed Edwards was in possession of a black backpack, which contained two spoons with controlled dangerous substance residue along with seven syringes. Edwards was arrested and charged with possession of CDS-oxycodone, possession of paraphernalia and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

This week in District Court, Edwards pleaded guilty to possession and was sentenced to 18 months in jail, all of which was suspended. He was then placed on probation for three years and fined $300.

Clay Pot Assault

SALISBURY — A Salisbury man was arrested on assault and other charges last week after allegedly forcing his way into a home and fighting with the resident.

Around 10:45 p.m. last Friday, Salisbury Police responded to a residence at Brown and Barclay streets in Salisbury for a reported fight in progress. The responding officers met with an adult male victim that indicated he had been assaulted by another man, later identified as Curtis Matthew Brown, 47, of Salisbury.

The victim told police Brown had broken the front window of his residence and forced his way in. A friend of the victim forced Brown out of the residence, but Brown then allegedly threw a clay pot at the victim, hitting him in the arm. Brown allegedly smashed the windshield of the victim’s vehicle.

Brown was located a short time later and was taken into custody. He has been charged with second-degree assault, third-degree burglary and malicious destruction of property. The victim was not injured during the alleged assault.

Fight At Elks’ Club

SALISBURY — A Delmar man was arrested on assault and other charges during a fight at the Elks’ Club in Salisbury last weekend after allegedly battling with police and club management.

Around 1:30 a.m. last Saturday, Salisbury Police responded to a reported fight in progress inside the Elks’ Club on Catherine Street. Upon arrival, Salisbury officers entered the business and disbanded the fight. However, one suspect, later identified as Joseph William Bailey, Jr., 38, of Delmar, became disorderly and refused to leave the business despite instruction from the managers to do so.

Continued attempts at getting Bailey to leave were unsuccessful and he was eventually taken into custody by Salisbury Police. During the arrest, Bailey allegedly assaulted police officers. Bailey was charged with second-degree assault, resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and failure to obey a lawful order. No injuries were reported. The Wicomico County Sheriff’s Office assisted Salisbury Police during the incident.

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