Cab Fare Theft Arrest
OCEAN CITY — A Delaware man was arrested last weekend after allegedly refusing to pay a cab fare and launching an expletive-laced tirade at the driver and the officers attempting to diffuse the situation.
Around 1:30 a.m. last Thursday, an Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officer responded to a downtown convenience store for a reported theft. The officer was waved over by a cab driver, who reportedly told police he had just completed a fare and the rider, later identified as Keith Junior, 62, of Wilmington, Del., refused to pay the roughly $9 fare. The cabbie reportedly told police he picked up Junior, who had been thrown out of a downtown bar for being intoxicated and fighting with a bouncer.
The cab driver reportedly told police Junior began arguing with him in the taxi and wanted to fight, so he pulled over in the convenience store parking lot and ordered Junior out of the cab. The cabbie told police Junior refused to pay, but when the officers’ arrived on scene, Junior was holding up his cell phone and told the officers he was paying using his phone, according to police reports.
Junior reportedly told police he had cash, but preferred to pay by phone. When the cabbie told Junior he only accepts cash payments, Junior reportedly launched into an expletive-laced tirade at the driver. When he told he was going to be arrested if he didn’t pay the fare, Junior reportedly launched and expletive-laced and racially charged tirade at the OCPD officers. He was ultimately arrested for theft and disorderly conduct.
Couple Arrested For Assault
OCEAN CITY — A Delaware couple was arrested on assault charges last weekend following a domestic incident at a downtown motel.
Around 1:30 a.m. last Saturday, Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officers responded to a motel on 5th Street for a reported domestic dispute. Occupants of a neighboring motel room called police and reported fighting in the unit next to them. When OCPD officers arrived, they heard two people yelling inside a unit on the second floor.
One of the occupants, identified as Ashley Garrett, 22, of Newark, Del., answered the door and was crying, shaking and visibly upset, according to police reports. OCPD officers separated Garrett from the male occupant in the room, identified as Timothy Harper, 43, of Newark, Del., for the purposes of hearing their version of the incident.
Harper reportedly told police Garrett hit him in the face, but he didn’t want to get her in trouble. According to police reports, Harper’s eye was red and swollen, and he reportedly told the officers “she has a mean left hook.” Harper said he got into an argument over Garrett wanting to look at his phone. Harper did reportedly acknowledge throwing Garrett’s phone off the balcony to the street below, but denied striking her or laying his hands on her.
Garrett was also interviewed about her version of the events, but offered little in the way of evidence. She did reportedly tell police Harper was wrestling around with her, but did not claim that she was struck by Harper, nor did she strike him.
Because Harper’s eye was red and swollen, Garrett was arrested for second-degree assault. During a search of Garrett incident to her arrest, OCPD officers reportedly saw several injuries on her lower back and on her hands. Harper was also arrested for second-degree assault.
Another Domestic Assault Arrest
OCEAN CITY — A New York man was arrested on assault and other charges last weekend after a domestic incident at a downtown hotel.
Around 9:50 p.m. last Saturday, Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officers responded to a hotel on 16th Street for a reported domestic incident. Upon arrival, OCPD officers met with three people in the lobby, including a male and female victim and the suspect, identified as Christopher McGuirk, 26, of South Glens Falls, N.Y.
The male victim reportedly told police he had been assaulted by McGuirk and had physically injuries to his chest. The male victim reportedly told police he had watched McGuirk assault the female victim and throw her cell phone from the hotel room balcony. The male victim reportedly told police he was attempting to defend the female victim, who was McGuirk’s girlfriend. The trio was staying in the hotel room together.
The male victim told police McGuirk had assaulted the female and had left the room. When McGuirk attempted to come back in the room, the male victim fought with him in the hallway, which is when he was injured, according to police reports.
When interviewed separately, the female victim told police she had been in an argument with McGuirk because she suspected he had been cheating on her. The female victim told police McGuirk slapped her in the head and then sprayed body wash on her head and in her mouth. The victim told police McGuirk had also destroyed some of her personal belongings.
OCPD officers located McGuirk a short time later. McGuirk reportedly told police he had been in a physical fight at the hotel, but that the other male had hit him first. At that point, McGuirk was arrested for second-degree assault. McGuirk reportedly told police his service dog was alone in his running car.
McGuirk reportedly told police he would not divulge where his car was parked because he was afraid it would get towed. Officers eventually located the running vehicle with the service dog in the back seat. The officers also located the female victim’s smashed cell phone on the ground below the seventh-floor room where the incident occurred. McGuirk was arrested on two counts of second-degree assault, malicious destruction of property and the appropriate citations for leaving a dog alone in a running vehicle.
Two Arrested For Fighting
OCEAN CITY — Two men were arrested early last Sunday morning following a melee at a downtown convenience store parking lot.
Around 2:45 a.m. last Sunday, Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officers patrolling in the area of 26th Street observed a fight in progress in a convenience store parking lot involving three men battling with four other men. Upon arrival, officers reportedly observed one of the combatants, later identified as Andrew Jackson, 24, of Ocean City, allegedly run toward a white pick-up truck with a full-sized shovel and smash out the rear window.
Jackson ran from the scene with the four males with whom he had been fighting giving chase. An OCPD officer followed and discovered one man on the ground with another man later identified as James Piotrowski standing over him and cussing. According to police reports, the victim, who was part of the group with Jackson, was attempting to cover up as Piotrowski allegedly kicked him multiple times in the head and torso.
The officer announced himself as a police officer and ordered Piotrowski to stop and get on the ground. However, Piotrowski reportedly charged toward the officer before swerving to evade him. When the officer placed his hands on Piotrowski’s shoulders and ordered him to stop, Piotrowski reportedly pushed away and struck the officer in the torso.
Piotrowski then ran north toward Sunset Avenue where he was caught after a brief foot chase. He was arrested and charged with two counts of assault. Jackson was also arrested and charged with malicious destruction of property for allegedly smashing out the rear window of the truck with a shovel.
Cocaine Dealer Sentenced
SNOW HILL — The third of four local residents indicted by a Worcester County grand jury last November on various drug distribution charges after a months-long investigation in the Berlin area pleaded guilty this week and was sentenced to 10 years in jail, all but four of which were suspended.
Last November, the Worcester County Criminal Enforcement Team completed a three-month cocaine distribution investigation culminating with the execution of a search and seizure warrant at a residence on Flower Street in Berlin. The search resulted in the recovery of 147 grams of cocaine, a handgun and various packaging items consistent with drug distribution.
Simultaneously, a traffic stop was conducted related to the investigation at Old Ocean City Boulevard and Main Street in Berlin, resulting in the arrest of another suspect wanted in connection with the investigation. All told, four local suspects were arrested in connection with the investigation and each was indicted last week by a Worcester County grand jury.
Among those indicted following the investigation were Dashon Drummond, 27, of Berlin; Charles Johnson, 31, of Berlin; Elizabeth Rosario, 25, of Berlin; and Joshua King, 24, of Snow Hill. This week, King pleaded guilty to distribution of cocaine and was sentenced to 10 years, all but four of which were suspended. He was also placed on supervised probation for four years upon his release.
In September, Rosario entered an Alford plea to possession with intent to distribute cocaine and was sentenced to three years in jail. In an Alford plea, a defendant does not plead guilty, but acknowledges the state has enough evidence to prosecute the case.
In August, Johnson pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute cocaine and possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony. He was sentenced to 15 years on the cocaine distribution count, which was suspended, and five years on the firearm charge. Drummond in March entered an Alford plea to possession with intent to distribute cocaine and sentencing has been set for Friday.
Jail For Assault On Teen
OCEAN CITY — A Philadelphia man arrested in August for assaulting his teenage daughter on a crowded beach pleaded guilty last week to second-degree assault and was sentenced to 29 days.
Around 5:10 p.m. on Aug. 1, an Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officer was dispatched to the beach at 12th Street for a reported fight in progress. Upon arrival, the officer met with a member of the Ocean City Beach Patrol, who escorted him to the scene of the fight. The officer reportedly observed a suspect later identified as Rasheed Gray, 36, of Philadelphia, irate and yelling and screaming while pacing back and forth on the beach.
The officer reportedly observed a 13-year-old juvenile female leaning up against an older female, who had her arms around the victim. According to police reports, several members of Gray’s family were crying and visibly upset. Beach Patrol officers told police Gray got mad at his daughter and punched and kicked her, according to police reports. Beach Patrol officers told police they observed a goose egg-style bump on the juvenile’s forehead as a result of the assault.
OCPD officers also observed a bald spot on the victim’s head and it became evident Gray had pulled out her braided-style hair. Gray was interviewed and told police the juvenile was being disrespectful to him, so he was “punishing her the way he feels right,” according to police reports. The adult woman with the child shook her head at Gray and told him he was wrong for his actions, according to police reports.
According to police reports, Gray was heavily intoxicated. Witnesses on the beach described Gray hitting the juvenile victim with a closed fist. They also described in their written witness reports Gray kicking the victim in the face and torso and pulling her hair. According to police reports, Gray stated several times he was “chastising” his daughter and that he felt that was the correct way to parent, according to police reports.
“You’re doing your job and I’m just doing mine as a dad,” Gray reportedly told police. “I will chastise my daughter as I see fit. I don’t care what other people think. I will chastise my daughter so she doesn’t become a piece of [expletive deleted].”
Gray was arrested and charged with assault, intoxicated endangerment, disturbing the peace and other counts. Last week, he pleaded guilty to second-degree assault and was sentenced to 29 days.