Assault Arrest After Boardwalk Melee

Assault Arrest After Boardwalk Melee
Social Issues Government

OCEAN CITY — A Princess Anne man faces assault and disorderly conduct charges this week after an incident on the Boardwalk during which he allegedly fought with another man and later police.

Around 11:50 p.m. last Friday, an OCPD officer was dispatched to the Boardwalk at 3rd Street for a reported fight in progress. The officer arrived and observed a group of around 15 people in the center of the Boardwalk. In the center of the group was a suspect, later identified as Michael Kunle-Kenhinde, 22, of Princess Anne, who was walking around with his arms raised in a combative stance while yelling.

The others in the group attempted to calm Kunle-Kehinde. The officer observed at least four members of the group attempting to hold Kunle-Kehinde away from another man on the opposite side of the crowd, but he allegedly continued to shout obscenities and raise his arms in a combative manner as he attempted to break free from their grasp, according to police reports.

The OCPD officer shouted to Kunle-Kehinde to come toward him for questioning. According to charging documents, Kunle-Kenhinde recognized the officer as a uniformed police officer and began walking toward the officer, but then attempted to evade the officer and leave the scene.

According to police reports, the OCPD officer grabbed Kunle-Kehinde’s arm in an attempt to detain him and identify him, but the suspect told the officer, “This is not necessary. I go back to my job now.” Kunle-Kehinde continued to shout and point his finger at other OCPD officers who had arrived on the scene. After several commands from police to stop shouting and stop pointing at the officers, the original officer on the scene took the suspect to the ground. According to police reports, Kunle-Kehinde shouted, “What the [expletive deleted] did I do?” but a witness shouted from a hotel balcony “I watched the whole thing. This is all on you.”

At that point, Kunle-Kehinde was taken into custody. By that point, about 100 people on the Boardwalk had gathered around to watch the incident. According to police reports, roughly 30 more guests dining nearby also stopped what they were doing to watch the scene unfold and most of the witnesses showed signs of disgust at the profanity-laced tirade.

The officer walked Kunle-Kehinde off the Boardwalk at 4th Street in order to diffuse the scene and question the suspect and other witnesses. The investigation revealed Kunle-Kehinde was working at his place of employment at a Boardwalk piercing shop and was trying to solicit business when he became engaged in an argument with a passerby. The suspect approached the victim from about 20 yards away and attempted to land an overhand punch at the victim, who was able to avoid the strike. ‘

Kunle-Kenhinde continued to pursue the victim, which is when the crowd gathered just before police arrived. Surveillance video obtained from a nearby Boardwalk hotel confirmed the sequence of events. Kunle-Kehinde told police he had been struck in the face during the incident, but exhibited no signs of injury, according to police reports. Based on the evidence, Kunle-Kehinde was arrested and charged with second-degree assault and disorderly conduct.

Fishing Gear Thief Charged

WEST OCEAN CITY — A Berlin man was charged with theft last week after Maryland Natural Resources Police were able to connect him to the theft of fishing gear from vessels at the Ocean City Fishing Center during White Marlin Open week.

On Aug. 5, NRP officers received a report of a theft that had occurred at the Ocean City Fishing Center in West Ocean City during the White Marlin Open. Fishing gear, including expensive reels, were stolen from multiple vessels at the marina. Surveillance video and photos were captured of the suspect’s vehicle.

NRP released the video and photos to the public and distributed a flier, resulting in the identification of the suspect, Dennis Tronosky, 38, of Berlin. After further investigation, a search warrant was secured for Tronosky’s residence and vehicle. After concluding interviews, charges were filed against Tronosky for theft from vehicles at the fishing center.

The total estimated value of the stolen fishing equipment was $5,600. Last Saturday, Tronosky was charged with two counts of theft between $1,000 and $10,000, which carry a potential penalty of 10 years for each count and/or a fine of $10,000. Tronosky was also charged as a convicted felon in possession of a firearm, which carries of maximum penalty of 25 years.

Alert Employee Staves Off Credit Card Theft

OCEAN CITY — A Mexican national was arrested on credit card theft charges last weekend after an alert midtown restaurant employee recognized the card he attempted to use to pay his bill had been reported stolen just moments earlier.

Around 4:20 p.m. last Saturday, an OCPD officer responded to Seacrets on 49th Street for a reported theft of a credit card. Upon arrival, the officer met with restaurant staff who said they had detained a man who had paid his bill using a stolen credit card. The officer questioned the detained man, but had difficulty communicating because of a language barrier.

When asked for identification, the suspect produced a Mexican passport identifying him as Armando Santamaria Galvan. When the officer asked the suspect, then still known as Galvan, where he got the credit card he used to pay his bill, the suspect pointed to the ground. The officer met with restaurant employees, who said they confronted Galvan about using the stolen credit card. According to staffers, Galvan attempted to walk away quickly and was observed taking the blue credit card from his pocket and tossing it on the ground as he attempted to flee.

Next, the officer met with the restaurant employee to whom Galvan allegedly presented the stolen credit card for payment of his bill. The staffer told police when she went to swipe the credit card, the name of the credit card holder came up on her screen. The staffer told police she recognized the credit card had been reported stolen just moments earlier.

The alert server pointed out Galvan to security staff, which then followed the suspect and observed him tossing away the stolen credit card. The officer then met with the credit card’s owner, who told police he believed his card fell out of his pocket when he pulled out his cell phone. The card owner said he reported his credit card stolen to his credit card company around 3:30 p.m. At 4:08 p.m., the charge for $127.44 appeared on the statement retrieved from the victim’s cell phone. The server who recognized the stolen credit card positively identified “Galvan” as the suspect.

The officer then began to question Galvan about his identity. The suspect was unable to give the officer a valid address, but told police he lived in Philadelphia. OCPD Communications searched data bases for a name matching Galvan’s in Philadelphia to no avail. A broader search of Maryland and Pennsylvania came back with negative results. Further investigation revealed the suspect’s true identity as Adan Garcia-Tepatlan, 28, of no fixed address. Garcia-Tepatlan was arrested and charged with credit card theft and other counts.

30 Days For ATM Theft

OCEAN CITY — A Pennsylvania man, arrested in May along with a juvenile after swiping an entire ATM machine from a downtown Ocean City parking lot, pleaded guilty last week to theft and was sentenced to 30 days in jail.

Around 4 a.m. on May 15, Ocean City Police responded to the area of Somerset Street and Baltimore Ave. for a reported theft in progress. When officers arrived, they observed two suspects leaving the area with a very large object in the back seat of their vehicle and a rear door of the vehicle forced open.

Officers stopped the vehicle on Somerset Street and discovered the large object was actually an ATM that had been stolen from a nearby parking lot. The driver of the vehicle, identified as Austin H. Emerick, 19, of Lancaster, Pa., and the passenger, a 17-yer-old juvenile from Millersville, Pa., were then arrested for theft.

During a search of the vehicle, officers located a small amount of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Emerick and the 17-year-old juvenile were each charged with theft from $10,000 to under $100,000, malicious destruction of property and fourth-degree burglary. Last week, Emerick pleaded guilty to theft from $1,000 to under $10,000 and was sentenced to 30 days in jail. The disposition of the case against the juvenile is not known.

Six Months For Burglary

OCEAN CITY — A local man, arrested for breaking and entering in March after being found sleeping in the crawl space of a residence in the area of 6th Street, was found guilty earlier this month of fourth-degree burglary and was sentenced to six months in jail.

Around 3:30 p.m. on March 21, OCPD officers patrolling in the downtown area observed a man later identified as Jeffrey Taylor, 53, of Ocean City, disappear behind a residence on 6th Street and St. Louis Ave. The officers responded to the area and did not see the suspect, but located an uncovered opening to a crawl space under the house. As one of the officers was walking by the residence, he peered through another opening to the underneath of the building and observed several beer cans strewn about.

The officers walked toward the crawl space and could observe the shoes of some individual, presumably Taylor, underneath the building with the wooden covering for the crawl space opening lying nearby. The officers then observed Taylor sleeping just inside the crawl space. They identified themselves as police officers and asked Taylor to come out of the crawl space.

The officers questioned Taylor, who told them he was just looking for a place to take a nap, according to police reports. Taylor told police he had a place to stay, but was recently forced to leave it. When asked if he had permission to sleep under the residence, Taylor told police he did not.

Taylor was placed under arrest for fourth-degree burglary. The officer observed in his report nothing appeared to have been missing or out of place in the crawl space except for the displaced wooden covering, which appeared to be its only point of entry. OCPD officer later spoke with the property owners who confirmed they did not know Taylor nor did he have permission to be under the residence.

Last week, Taylor was found guilty to fourth-degree burglary-storehouse and was sentenced to two years in jail. All but six months of the sentence was then suspended.

Light Bulb Thief Nabbed

BERLIN — A Seaford, Del. man was arrested on theft charges this week after allegedly swiping headlight bulbs from the Wal-Mart in Berlin.

Just before 6 p.m. last Sunday, a Worcester County Sheriff’s deputy was dispatched for a reported theft. Upon arrival, the deputy learned from Wal-Mart asset protection employees a suspect later identified as Charles Brown, 29, of Seaford, had concealed two headlight light bulbs on his person and exited the store, passing all points of sale without purchase. The deputy issued Brown a criminal citation for theft and the suspect was released pending trial.