Credit Card Theft Arrest

BERLIN — An Ocean City man was arrested on multiple counts of felony theft last weekend after the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office was able to connect him to the fraudulent use of stolen credit card.

Last Saturday, a Worcester County Sheriff’s deputy arrested Curtis James Adkins, 28, for multiple counts of felony theft. Adkins had been the lead suspect in an ongoing four-month investigation during which he allegedly stole and used a credit or debit card. According to police reports, Adkins allegedly used the stolen card as many as 30 times throughout Worcester County and made over $6,000 in fraudulent charges and cash withdraws.

Adkins was arrested and charged with felony identity fraud from $1,000 to $10,000, felony theft from $1,000 to $10,000, felony theft scheme, misdemeanor theft and misdemeanor theft scheme. He was take before a District Court Commissioner and was taken to the Worcester County Jail on a $5,000 bond.

Significant Pot Bust

NEWARK — The Worcester County Criminal Enforcement Team last week concluded a two-month marijuana distribution investigation with the recovery of over seven pounds of weed and the arrest of a Newark man.

Last Saturday, the Criminal Enforcement Team wrapped up a two-month investigation with the service of a search and seizure warrant on a residence in Newark. Investigators recovered 7.5 pounds of marijuana and found a suspect, identified as Jerome McKay, 26, of Newark, at the residence.

McKay had been the focus of the investigation and was subsequently arrested and charged with possession of marijuana, possession with intent to distribute marijuana and possession of paraphernalia. McKay was committed to the Worcester County Jail on a $7,000 bond. The Worcester County Sheriff’s Office STAR Team and the Ocean City Police Narcotics Unit assisted the Worcester County Criminal Enforcement Team in the case.

Four Arrested Aftter Brawl

WEST OCEAN CITY — Four suspects were arrested on disorderly conduct charges this week after continually fighting at a West Ocean City motel.

Around 10:50 p.m. on Tuesday, Maryland State Police troopers responded to a 911 call at the Rambler Motel in West Ocean City regarding four individuals fighting. Troopers arrived and found several individuals arguing. The officers attempted to quiet down the suspects, but two initially failed to cooperate and were arrested.

The two other suspects were advised to return to their rooms and remain quiet for the rest of the evening. However, about 20 minutes later, the MSP Berlin barrack received several 911 calls that two individuals were again fighting in the motel parking lot. Troopers responded again and this time arrested the other two suspects.

Those arrested included Julio Mujico, 23, of West Ocean City; Caleb Schmitt, 21, of West Ocean City; Tyler Shores, 21, of West Ocean City; and a 17-year-old juvenile. All of the suspects with the exception of the juvenile were extremely intoxicated, according to police reports. The three adults were charged with disorderly conduct and were released on criminal citations after being processed. The juvenile was charged with a juvenile charging document.

Offender At School Arrested

SNOW HILL — A Pocomoke man was arrested last week after police learned the registered sex offender had visited his daughter at Snow Hill Elementary during school hours last month for the third time this year in violation of the terms of his probation and reporting requirements.

Around 2 p.m. on March 21, a Worcester County school deputy contacted the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office Sex Offender Unit in regards to a registered sex offender on the property of Snow Hill Elementary. The deputy advised that a suspect, identified as Darryle Dennis, 22, of Pocomoke, had entered the school that day in an attempt to deliver balloons to his daughter on her birthday.

When Dennis’ identification was scanned through security, it revealed he was a known registered sex offender. The vice principal and the deputy confronted Dennis, who was told to leave the property, which he did. It was third time in the current school year that Dennis entered the school property. Dennis was convicted of a fourth-degree sex offense in January 2011.

Since that time, Dennis has been a registered sex offender and has reported to the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office as required by law. Dennis may not knowingly enter onto real property that is used from public or non-public elementary or secondary education, or at a registered childcare home or childcare institution. Dennis was arrested last Saturday and is being held without bond at the Worcester County Jail.

Internal Probe Continues

SALISBURY — An internal investigation into the alleged theft of thousands of dollars in cash and checks from the city of Salisbury’s Finance Department continued this week while the department reviews its operating procedures.

For the past three months, the Salisbury Police Department has been conducting an investigation into the theft of a bank deposit from within the city of Salisbury’s Finance Department. The investigation revealed the deposit was prepared by an employee on January 2 and was to be deposited the next day, but never made it to the bank.

The missing deposit contained nearly $3,000 in currency along with 61 checks. When the deposit went missing, the finance department contacted the issuers of the checks to request replacements. To date, 55 checks have been reissued, while five other replacement checks and one money order are still pending.

The investigation is ongoing and anyone with information is urged to contact Salisbury Police at (410) 548-3165, or Crime Solvers at (410) 548-1776. Salisbury Police Chief Barbara Duncan said this week the investigation thus far has focused on the department itself.

“This case remains open and detectives continue to thoroughly investigate all leads,” she said. “We are focusing our efforts on the internal operations of the Finance Department. We have made substantial progress with Direct [Keith] Cordrey in updating the operating procedures within the Finance Department to prevent future issues of this nature.”

For his part, Cordrey said the missing deposit has caused the department to revisit some of its checks and balances procedures.

“While unfortunate, this event prompted the review of many processes within the department,” he said. “This review resulted in significant process improvements in both assets and employee safety.”

Second WOC Bank

Robbery Suspect Cleared

SNOW HILL — Just days after one of the suspects arrested in connection with the robbery of the PNC Bank in West Ocean City last July was found guilty on all counts, his alleged accomplice in the case had all the charges against him dropped.

Last Wednesday, Dale Mentzer, 35, of Newmanstown, Pa. was found guilty in Worcester County Circuit Court of robbery, conspiracy to commit robbery and two counts of theft for his role in the robbery of the PNC Bank on Route 50 in West Ocean City last July 23. On Friday, Mentzer’s alleged accomplice in the holdup, identified as Heath Derizzo, 36, of Harrisburg, Pa., had all of the same charges against him related to the incident dismissed in Circuit Court.

Shortly after 9 a.m. last July 23, unidentified suspects entered the PNC Bank branch on Route 50 and demanded money. No money was given and the suspects fled the scene. No injuries were reported, nor were any weapons displayed. Early on in the investigation, with the help of media and social networks circulating surveillance images of the suspects, a possible connection was developed to a series of bank robberies in Pennsylvania the week before.

Maryland State Police and Worcester County Sheriff’s Office investigators continued to follow up on leads and search for the two suspects in the hours following the West Ocean City bank robbery. Later that same night, Derizzo and Mentzer were located in a motel room in Salisbury and were taken into custody without further incident.

Search warrants were issued and executed on the motel room in Salisbury where Derizzo and Mentzer were found and arrested and evidence was collected connecting them to the West Ocean City bank robbery earlier that day. The investigation revealed Derizzo was also wanted by the Pennsylvania State Police on an outstanding warrant for parole violations and additional charges for robbery. Mentzer was also wanted in Pennsylvania for an outstanding arrest warrant for armed robbery.

Following the arrest of Mentzer and Derizzo in Salisbury last July, Pennsylvania authorities were alerted they had been taken into custody and an extended investigation into their possible involvement in a series of bank robberies there was undertaken. It is not known if Derizzo and Mentzer were charged for those robberies in Pa. nor is the disposition of their out-of-state cases.