OCEAN CITY — A Ft. Meade, Md. man faces a slew of charges this week after first failing to pay his cab fare before assaulting the taxi driver and causing the vehicle to roll over the sidewalk and crash into a fence.
Around 12:30 a.m. last Friday, an OCPD officer was dispatched to the area of Coastal Highway and 37th Street for a reported assault. The responding officer met with another OCPD officer, who reported seeing a taxi driving erratically before coming to a sudden stop at 37th Street. The officer then observed the taxi roll forward over the sidewalk on the south side of the highway before striking a fence.
The officer interviewed the cab driver, who told police he picked up a fare later identified as Timothy Emmart, 31, of Fort Meade, in the area of 60th Street with a request to be dropped off at a hotel on 21st Street. When the driver got to the hotel on 21st Street, Emmart allegedly refused to pay the $14 fare. The cab driver told Emmart he was going to pay the fare or he was going to drive the suspect to the police station, to which Emmart allegedly responded “Fine, go ahead.”
With that said, the cab driver headed north toward the Public Safety Building with Emmart still in the vehicle. When the cab reached the area of 36th Street, Emmart allegedly began striking the cab drive with a closed fist in the head, neck and face, according to police reports.
The cab driver told police he pulled over at 37th Street to attempt to defend himself from the attack. The cabbie told police in his efforts to defend himself, he neglected to put the vehicle in park, causing it to roll forward over the sidewalk and crash into a fence before coming to rest. The officer observed injuries on the cab driver corroborating his account of the incident, including swelling, redness and laceration on the right side of his face. The officer also observed the cab driver’s prescription eyeglasses were broken.
When asked about his version of the events, Emmart told police he attempted to pay the fare, but only had $3. He told police the cab driver refused to let him out of the taxi. After repeated questions, Emmart acknowledged the cab driver took him to his destination, but he did not pay the fare because he only had $14. He continued to assert the cab driver would not let him out of the taxi.
Based on the evidence and testimony, Emmatr was arrested and charged with theft, second-degree assault, reckless endangerment and malicious destruction of property. He was taken by police transport van to the Public Safety Building for processing, when the transporting officer reported Emmart suddenly through himself on the floor of the transport van. Emmart told the transporting officers he suffered a head injury and requested an ambulance.
Despite showing no signs of injury, Emmart was transported to AGH by ambulance as a precaution. According to police reports, Emmart was uncooperative with hospital staff and refused treatment. Hospital staff did not detect any signs of injury and Emmart was discharged. As a result, an additional charge of making a false alarm for an ambulance was added to the other charges Emmart faces for the alleged assault on the cab driver.