Plate Reader Alerts Police To Stolen Car; Wanted Felon, Handgun Found

OCEAN CITY — Just days after the town of Ocean City received a state grant for the funding of new License Plate Reader (LPR) technology to aid police in the battle against the growing heroin epidemic, an LPR located on Route 50 alerted police of a stolen vehicle heading into the resort.

Last week, the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention approved a $124,635 grant for the OCPD for the implementation of a new LRP at the Maryland-Delaware line to help stem the flow of heroin into the resort area from points north. Just two days later, an existing LPR on Route 50 in West Ocean City helped nab the suspects of a stolen car reported in Virginia.

Around 11:15 a.m. last Thursday, Ocean City Communications received an alert from an LPR on Route 50 of a stolen vehicle. The vehicle was reported stolen out of Accomack County, Va. A description of the vehicle was broadcast by dispatchers and OCPD officers quickly located the vehicle parked in the area of Worcester Street and Philadelphia Ave. The vehicle was occupied by three males who were each detained without incident.

One suspect, identified as Traquan Spady, 18, of Eastville, Va., was in the driver’s seat and in possession of an open container of alcohol. It was later learned another suspect in the vehicle, identified as Rontari Warren, 21, of Birdsnest, Va., was wanted in South Carolina for a probation violation for second-degree burglary. A third suspect was released on the scene.

A short time later, a concerned citizen located a handgun near the scene of the incident. OCPD officers determined the handgun had been thrown out of the vehicle’s window by Warren when officers approached the stolen car. Warren has been charged with two counts of possession of a handgun, two counts of illegal possession of a firearm, possession of a stolen firearm, possession of a firearm after a prior felony conviction and knowingly altering a firearm identification number. Spady has been charged with theft less than $10,000, theft of a motor vehicle and possession of an open container.

Each suspect was taken before a District Court Commissioner and transferred to the Worcester County Jail. Warren is being held on a $100,000 bond, while Spady is being held on a $30,000 bond.

About The Author: Shawn Soper

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Shawn Soper has been with The Dispatch since 2000. He began as a staff writer covering various local government beats and general stories. His current positions include managing editor and sports editor. Growing up in Baltimore before moving to Ocean City full time three decades ago, Soper graduated from Loch Raven High School in 1981 and from Towson University in 1985 with degrees in mass communications with a journalism concentration and history.