Utility Pole Struck

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BERLIN — A Salisbury man was listed in stable condition this week after running off the road on Route 346 near Whaleyville early last Sunday morning and striking a utility pole.

Around 2:45 a.m. last Sunday, Maryland State Police responded to a reported motor vehicle accident on Route 346 near its intersection with Route 610 in Whaleyville. The investigation revealed a 1996 Toyota Corolla left the roadway and struck a Verizon utility pole, shearing it off. The pole was located in the roadway and was blocking the travel lanes of Route 346. Delmarva Power lines were also connected to the pole and were damaged in the collision.

The operator and sole occupant identified as Matthew Elliott Lankford, 29, of Salisbury, was out of the vehicle and walking around. MSP troopers reported detecting an odor of alcohol on Lankford’s breath. Lankford was transported to PRMC for treatment of injuries not believed to be life-threatening and was listed in stable condition. Lankford has been charged with driving under the influence and related traffic violations.

Fatal ATV Crash

SALISBURY — A 29-year-old Salisbury man perished last week after his ATV left the roadway in the area of West Street and collided with a concrete barrier.

Around 5:20 p.m. last Wednesday, Salisbury Police responded to the area of West Street and Isabella Street for a reported motor vehicle accident involving an ATV. The investigation revealed the driver was operating a Suzuki 4×4 four-wheeler at a high rate of speed when the ATV left the roadway, struck an uneven section of pavement and collided with a concrete barrier in a parking lot.

The driver was not wearing a helmet or any other safety equipment at the time of the accident. The driver, identified as Vincent Alphonso Parker, 29, of Salisbury, was taken to PRMC where he later died from his injuries. Alcohol was not a factor in the incident.

Bottle Assault Sentence

SALISBURY — A Salisbury man arrested last September after smashing a liquor bottle over a woman’s head and then punching her again while a Good Samaritan was attempting to rescue her was found guilty this week and was sentenced to 20 years in jail.

On Tuesday, a  Wicomico County jury found Keith Alexander Harmon, 56, guilty of first- and second-degree assault and reckless endangerment. After the verdict was handed down, Harmon was sentenced to 10 years each for the first- and second-degree assault charges to be served consecutively netting a total of 20 years, while the reckless endangerment conviction was merged for the purpose of sentencing.

On September 22, Salisbury Police responded to the area of Claiborne and Lake Streets for a reported assault and found a female victim bleeding profusely from the head. The investigation revealed Harmon had smashed a liquor bottle over the victim’s head and later punched her in the face while another individual attempted to carry the victim to a safe place.

Resort Burglars Convicted

OCEAN CITY — Three suspects arrested last June after breaking into a residence in Ocean City each were found guilty this week of fourth-degree burglary and each received a suspended sentence and were ordered to pay restitution to the victim.

Around 9:20 p.m. last June 5, Ocean City Police responded to the Assawoman Drive area for a reported burglary in progress. When officers arrived, they observed a broken window and witnessed suspects running to the back of the house. After numerous attempts to get the suspects to exit the residence were unsuccessful, OCPD officers deployed the K-9 Jaxx and his handler at the scene.

Once inside the residence, Jaxx came to a locked bedroom in the rear of the unit. After ordering the suspect to open the door, OCPD officers arrested the five hiding suspects. Arrested were Mark Moore, 21, of Odenton; Nikolas Keene, 19, of Gambrills; and Sarah Otis, 19, of Chester. Also arrested were two juveniles. Each was charged with third- and fourth-degree burglary and malicious destruction of property.

This week, Moore, Keene and Otis were each found guilty of fourth-degree burglary and each was sentenced to six months, all of which was then suspended. Moore, Keene and Otis were also ordered to pay $2,305 in restitution to the victim. The disposition of the cases against the two juveniles is not known.

‘Most Wanted’ Nabbed

SALISBURY — Salisbury’s “most wanted” suspect, a man wanted for allegedly attacking a pregnant women several times since last June, was apprehended last week by a Maryland State Police trooper.

In December, Salisbury Police detectives began an investigation into a series of domestic assault incidents that started last June. The investigation focused on Elijah Rashawn Kellam, 22, of Salisbury, who allegedly assaulted a woman pregnant with his child.

According to police reports, Kellam allegedly utilized a broom handle to strike the victim in the legs and back, causing injuries. In a separate incident, Kellam allegedly punched the pregnant victim in the face and body.

Last Saturday, Kellam was located by an MSP trooper and was taken into custody. He had been featured as one of Salisbury’s “most wanted” for several months prior to his arrest. Kellam has been charged with second-degree assault, reckless endangerment and the use of a deadly weapon with intent to injure.

Sweepstakes Scam Warning

OCEAN CITY — Ocean City Police this week are investigating a series of telephone scams involving fraudulent sweepstakes winnings.

In the scam, the perpetrators are calling unsuspecting victims and advising them they have won a sweepstakes. In order to receive the large prize, the victims are instructed to go to a convenience store or drug store and purchase either a Green Dot or Money Pac reload card for a certain amount of money usually between $200 and $500. Once the victim has purchased the card they are instructed to contact the scammer, who is pretending to be a sweepstakes representative who will process the winning claim. 

The victim is asked to provide the Green Dot or Money Pac reload card information over the telephone as a means of verification the victim has actually completed the task. The result of this is that the scammer will use the information provided by the victim to redeem the value of the card that was purchased and the victim will be out the money.

The Ocean City Police Department is reminding citizens that legitimate sweepstakes require that you enter to win. If one did not enter a sweepstakes, one should not be named as a winner.  Legitimate sweepstakes will not ask you for a “processing fee” and federal and state taxes are usually deducted from the sum total of the winning amount prior to the sweepstakes winner receiving the final pay out.

As a reminder, citizens should never provide personal information including Social Security numbers, birth dates, passwords or home addresses to unknown businesses or individuals.  Also, never give out banking information or credit card account numbers over the phone to persons or businesses you cannot verify as legitimate. Criminals can take advantage of residents and visitors when they are most vulnerable.  By practicing a few easy proactive measures and reporting these types of scams, citizens can make it tough for criminals.

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