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15 Aug

WCTR LOCAL NEWS

News Aug 15 click to listen

The Rock Hall Police Department is investigating a Friday night accident involving the town’s tram service and a bicycle rider...

 

The Rock Hall Police Department is investigating a Friday night accident involving the town’s tram service and a bicycle rider. The incident happened just before 6pm, August 10 on Bayside Avenue at Bay Drive when a bicycle operated by 60-year-old Cynthia Joan Sullivan of Mt. Laurel, New Jersey was hit by a Jeep Wrangler towing the 12 passenger Rock Hall Trolley being driven by town employee, 67-year-old John A. Groves of Rock Hall. The tram was attempting to make a left turn onto Bay Drive when the tram stuck Sullivan in the leg and knocked her off the bike. There were passengers on the tram at the time of the accident. The Jeep and tram are registered with the town of Rock Hall. Sullivan was taken by ambulance from the Rock Hall Volunteer Fire Company to Shore Medical Center in Chestertown where she was treated for a broken arm and then released. Sullivan and her husband have a boat that is docked at one of Rock Hall’s marinas according to Rock Hall Police. No charges have been filed.

The Delaware State Police is looking for a female suspect with ties to Millington and Church Hill in connection with a series of June home burglaries in Hartly, Clayton and Dover. 25-year-old Destiny Thomas, who is believed to have ties to the Millington, Church Hill, Clayton and Dover areas, is wanted on various burglary, theft, and criminal mischief charges. Her brother, 32-year-old George Thomas III was arrested in Queen Anne’s County on Tuesday, August 14 in connection with the robberies. If anyone has information, they are urged to call Delaware Crimestoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333 or go to Delaware.Crimestoppersweb.com.

The Chestertown Police Department is investigating a Friday night fight with shots being fired in the 100 block of North Lynchburg Street. Chestertown Police do not know if anyone was injured in the incident. The incident happened around 11:50pm on August 10 and the Chestertown Police Department asks if anyone has information about the incident to contact Det. Wilson at 410-778-1800. This comes after an August 4th incident where two males, ages 17 and 20 were shot and injured in the same neighborhood. Both victims were treated and released from the hospital. Police say no one has come forward with information on that incident.

On Monday, August 13, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service announced they will hire a new Wildlife Refuge Specialist for the Eastern Neck Wildlife Refuge near Rock Hall. The decision means that the refuge, which was under consideration to be closed due to budget cuts, will remain open. The position will work with volunteers and Friends of Eastern Neck to support the refuge which includes operating the visitor center. Currently, staff from the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge near Cambridge drive two hours to work at Eastern Neck.

Queen Anne’s County has received two grants from the State Board of Public Works that will be used for land conservation. The grants were awarded on August 1. The first grant was Rural Legacy Funds worth $423,844 that will be used to purchase 99 acres along the Arnold II Property Easement that will be co-held by the county and the Department of Natural Resources. This land will protect productive agricultural and forest lands that provides habitat of migratory songbirds and raptors. The second grant from the same fund is worth $1,694,356 to acquire 398.67 acres on the Marylor Property Easement which will also protect productive agricultural and forest lands.

The Maryland Association of Counties got an earful from the Kent County Commissioners at the Tuesday night Commissioners’ meeting. Three representatives from MACo were at the August 7 commissioners’ meeting to update the county on what they called “big issues” in the last year including getting state highway revenue back to the counties and 911 call centers. Commissioner Bill Short said that MACo is not working hard enough on returning highway revenue back to the counties claiming that the state stole $3 million from the local citizens. Short said MACo should ask to get counties money back for education saying that the counties don’t have to use the money solely for road repairs. Commissioner William Pickrum said MACo needs to work harder on rural healthcare solutions while Commissioner Ron Fithian said he was not happy with MACo’s response on debris flowing through the Conowingo Dam a few weeks ago saying they sought opinions from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and not from the Clean Chesapeake Coalition claiming that the CBF has been wrong on the issue for the last 40 years.

The Chestertown Mayor and Council approved a bond issue for Heron Point at their Monday, August 8 meeting. The bond hearing issue for the retirement community was held before their regular meeting, and Lindsey Rader of Funk & Bolton presented the terms of the bond issue in accordance with federal regulations. She said the town would assume a pass-through status which would allow Heron Point to get more favorable rates and the town would not have any liability for the bonds that could total over $26 million. The bonds would be tax-free due to the town’s sponsorship and the terms would be no longer than 30 years. Town Manager Bill Ingersoll said the town has done similar arrangements in the past with Heron Point and Washington College and cites this as being a good neighbor to the institutions. Town councilman Marty Stetson asked if the town should get a fee for facilitating the deal and Town Manager Bill Ingersoll said such a fee should be arranged in advance. Mayor Chris Cerino said the town should ask for a fee in future agreements.

The October 1 Centreville town council election has been cancelled due to an uncontested race. Incumbent council member Tim McCluskey was the only candidate to file by the August 6 deadline. This will be McCluskey’s fourth term and will officially start with the town’s reorganization meeting in October. McCluskey is currently the president of the council

A Queenstown woman was arrested on Wednesday after an attempted armed robbery in Easton. According to the Easton Police Department, the incident happened at the 7/11 on Washington Street on August 8 when 44-year-old Cathy M. Wright of Queenstown allegedly went into the store claiming to have a gun and demanding money. She also made a motion toward her hip as she made the claim of having a gun. Police said she unsuccessfully tried to get into the registers and then ran from the store. Easton Police later arrested her on charges of attempted robbery and theft.

An Easton man has received an 18 year prison sentence in connection with two burglaries at the Safe Harbor Presbyterian Church in Stevensville. On July 31 in Queen Anne’s County Circuit Court, Scott Adam Hall was sentenced to 18 years with no time suspended in connection with the November and December 2017 robberies. In May, Hill pleaded guilty to second and fourth degree burglary along with malicious destruction of property over $1,000. Along with the prison term, a monetary judgment of $6,494 was awarded against Hill for damages to the church. Hill was tied to the robberies after a tip from his estranged wife in January 2018 about her husband burying a safe at their Easton residence that contained credit cards and a key belonging to the church.

The Chestertown Police Department is investigating an early Saturday morning shooting incident in the Calvert Heights area. Chestertown Police Chief Adrian Baker told the Chestertown mayor and council at their Monday night, August 6 meeting, that the incident happened around 1am on August 4 in the grassy area at the back end of the 700 block of High Street near North Lynchburg Street and in the Calvert Heights parking lot accessed by Hawkins Drive. Chief Baker said two people were injured; a 20-year-old male from Chestertown and a 17-year-old male from Cambridge. Both were treated and released from the Chestertown hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Chief Baker said at the meeting that “people were intentionally shooting at people”. Police do not know the motive for the shooting, nor how many shots were fired and are seeking information. If anyone has information, they are urged to call Chestertown Police at 410-778-1804 and ask for Lt. John Dolgos or Det. Clifford Wilson. The incident prompted Chestertown town councilman Ellsworth Tolliver, who represents the ward where the shooting incident took place, to call for residents to find more productive ways to resolve disputes.

A Chestertown woman was arrested on Friday and charged with multiple counts of drug possession with intent to distribute in a school zone. On August 3, 38-year-old Mimi Monique Smith was arrested after a search and seizure warrant was served at her residence on the 100 block of North Lynchburg Street at 3:20 am and suspected crack cocaine, suspected marijuana, and capsules of a suspected mix of fentanyl and heroin were seized. Her residence is near Garnett Elementary School. She is being held without bail in the Kent County Detention Center as she awaits a preliminary hearing on August 29.

Queen Anne’s County’s drug overdose death toll is now up to eleven for the year, which is more than twice the number of deaths last year. On Monday, August 6, the Queen Anne’s County Sheriff’s Office received toxicology reports from the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office which added four more drug overdose deaths in the county during the month of July. There were five drug overdose deaths in Queen Anne’s County last year and the county reached five in June of this year. The Medical Examiner’s report said that 43-year-old Gary Quesnel of Grasonville, 45-year-old Eric Thomas of Stevenville and 19-year-old Timothy Stevens III of Stevensville who all died on July 7, died of cocaine and fentanyl intoxication. Alprazolam also contributed to Stevens’ death. A fourth person, 39-year-old Myung Ki Kim of Chester died of fentanyl intoxication on July 27.

The Chestertown Pizza Hut has closed after a 40 year run. The final day of business in the 900 block of Washington Avenue on the north end of town was Sunday, July 29 and the franchise owner told the “Kent County News” that low traffic flow, less business and a decline in sit-down dining experiences were the reasons for the closing. The current franchise owner said the ownership of the franchise is changing and the new owners will reopen it at a different location. The current building is for sale. The original Chestertown Pizza Hut opened at the Kent Plaza in 1979 and it moved to 903 Washington Avenue in the late 1990s. The staff, which numbered 13 employees, knew about the closing in advance and are being taken care of according to the franchise owner.

Main Street Chestertown is looking for designers and artists to submit logo ideas for the organization and the winning designer will be paid $1,000 for the design. The logo design should promote a sense of Chestertown through a recognizable visual interpretation which includes typeface and any other visual elements. The words “Main Street Chestertown” must be a part of the design. Submissions are due on Monday, September 3 by noon and can e-mailed as digital files or dropped off at Town Hall at 118 N. Cross Street. More than one design can be submitted. Judging will be done anonymously. For more information, contact Kay McIntosh at kay.chestertown@gmail.com or at 410-778-2991.

The Queen Anne’s County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a report of a stolen trailer. The missing trailer belonging to CMF Leasing of Hanover was reported missing at 8:02am on August 2 and the unlocked trailer was reported to have been stolen sometime between July 1 and August 1 from where it was parked in the 300 Block of Log Canoe Circle in Stevensville. Anyone with information is urged to call the Sheriff’s Office at 410-758-0770.

The Kent County Narcotics Task Force has charged two Chestertown residents on narcotics charges after suspected fentanyl and heroin capsules were seized from their home. On July 31, 44-year-old Anthony Michael Green and 39-year-old Michelle Marie Solomon were charged with possession of narcotics and with intent to distribute for heroin, crack cocaine, and marijuana as well as intent to distribute within a school zone and drug paraphernalia charges. The couple is being held without bail at the Kent County Detention Center and face preliminary court hearings on August 27 in the Kent County District Court. The couple was arrested during a traffic stop at 11:43pm, July 31, on northbound Maple Avenue near Water Street in Chestertown and then were taken to their residence at 214 Calvert Street where they were subject to search and seizure warrant. Their Calvert Street residence is about a block from Garnett Elementary School.

The Maryland State Board of Education ruled against a censure request by the Queen Anne’s County School Board against county school board member Beverly Kelley. Kelley is the mother of one of the members of the Kent Island High School junior varsity lacrosse team involved in an alleged hazing and assault at the school last spring. Queen Anne’s County School Board president Annette DiMaggio alleged that Kelley had talked to school administrators concerning the incident and alleged that this was a conflict of interest because her son is on the team. In April, the Queen Anne’s County School Board discussed the alleged hazing incident and Kelley recused herself and left the meeting. Kelley said later that month she was sent a letter from the School Board requesting that she retire or resign and if she did not, the Queen Anne’s County School Board would request the Maryland State Board of Education remove her from office due to their conflict of interest concerns. Kelley refused to resign and the board voted 4-1 with Kelley casting the dissenting vote, to have Kelley censured. Kelley appealed the censure with the State Board of Education and the State Board ruled in the favor of Kelley saying that the county school board resolution was vague on the call for removal and contained few facts to support their resolution.

A citizen inquiry about an observation of a Rock Hall town employee transporting a fishing crew to a boat led to a heated discussion ending in a vote to allow the mayor and council to use town vehicles for personal use. The citizen said the town vehicle was parked at the dock all day and was told the employee was on call. The citizen asked how a town employee can be on call when they’re out on a fishing boat in the Bay. Later the discussion turned to Mayor Brian Jones’ use of a town-owned vehicle and Jones responded that he uses it for official town business. Council member Beth Andrews said there is no provision calling for the mayor to use a town vehicle while Jones countered there is no provision that prevents him from using it. Andrews also questioned why the vehicle is parked in his driveway, and Jones replied that if a resident calls 911 and needs help, he should always have a vehicle on hand and that he’s on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The council voted 3-2 to allow the council and town employees to have access to town vehicles at all times. Andrews and councilman Tim Edwards cast the dissenting votes.

The Kent County Arts Council has received a $100,000 grant from the Stories of the Chesapeake Heritage Area which supports preserving historic spaces on the Eastern Shore. The council will use the money to renovate the Raimond Arts Building at 101 Spring Avenue in Chestertown which was purchased by the Council in April 2017. The Maryland Historic Trust dates the oldest part of the building back to around 1790. Council Director John Schratwieser said the building is in terrible shape and all of it needs to be renovated to make it fully usable. Schratwieser said they need to raise about $1 million to finish the renovation and the $100,000 grant provides a good place to start.

A week after storms caused flood gates to be opened in the Conowingo Dam, the Maryland Natural Resources Police are urging boaters to exercise caution while out in the Chesapeake Bay due to debris fields floating in the water. The Natural Resources Police said that some of the debris fields are similar to icebergs because they may be larger under the water than what appears to be floating on the surface. They add that the debris could tear off propellers or punch holes in a boat. Most of the debris has been reported on the Western Shore, such as in Annapolis, but there are problem areas on the Eastern Shore such as Fairlee Creek.

capacity of the bridge no longer meets

A Queen Anne’s County man died in a Sunday morning single vehicle accident near Henderson. According to the Queen Anne’s County Sheriff’s Office, the accident happened around 9:20am, July 29 in the 1000 block of Bridgetown Road when 28-year-old Larry Marvel of Crumpton lost control of his 1999 Buick, left the road and struck a telephone pole. Marvel was ejected from the vehicle and died at the scene.

The Queen Anne’s County Commissioners discussed an ongoing Maryland Transportation Authority Bay Bridge traffic study at the July 24 Commissioner’s meeting. The MTA report, part of a $300,000 supplement funded by the county, in addition to the MTA’s $6 million study, shows how much traffic is crossing the bridge and how much stays on Kent Island. The county’s Public Works director Todd Mohn and Public Facilities planner Steven Cohoon presented the MTA study that counted the numbers of cars passing by counters at the Bay Bridge, Rt. 301 in Queenstown, Rt. 50 at Carmichael Road, and near the Delaware border at Galena Road. Commissioner Jim Moran said the daily average indicates that around 33,000 out of 37,000 cars pass the Rt. 50/301 split meaning that only 4,000 cars stay on Kent Island. The rest is through traffic. The numbers came from May, before the peak driving season. Also, there were 455 crashes along the Bay Bridge from 2012 to 2016, but only one of them was a fatal accident. Commissioner Moran said the the area’s traffic needs.

The remains of two dead dolphins were recovered from Kent Island waterways in July. The Maryland Department of Natural Resources said the first washed ashore on July 20 in the shallows of the Chester River and the second was towed by a jet ski operator to the Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center from Eastern Bay on July 29. DNR said the first dolphin’s death was not from a boat strike and was likely due to infection, illness, or old age. According to a post on the Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center’s website, they believed the second dolphin’s death was due to either a boat accident or due to algae bloom or pollution poisoning. This has not been confirmed by DNR. DNR says that dolphins are common in this area and so are dolphin stranding incidents.

The Queen Anne’s County Sheriff’s Office is investigating an attempted armed robbery of a Stevensville convenience store. On Saturday, July 28 around 11pm, Queen Anne’s County deputies responded to a call of an armed robbery attempt at the Friendly Food Store, 1383 Main Street in Stevensville. Police report that a man entered the store with a semi-automatic handgun and demanded money from the clerk. The man struck the clerk in the face with the gun and then fled the store. Nothing appeared to be stolen and the clerk was treated for non-life threatening injuries at the Queen Anne’s Emergency Center. Deputies, with help from the Maryland State Police searched the area with K-9 units and helicopter but were not able to find the suspect whom they believed fled in a vehicle parked nearby. The suspect is described as a light-skinned male, race unknown, wearing a light gray hooded sweatshirt with no front or back logo, dark colored pants, and black leather shoes. He was also wearing a dark ball cap, sunglasses, and a black face mask with multi-colored designs. He is around 5’7” and may be in his mid-20s or 30s. If anyone has information, they are urged to call the Sheriff’s office at 410-758-0770.

The Queen Anne’s County Sheriff’s Office is investigating several smash and grabs at the Queenstown Outlets and at the Hilton Garden Inn in Grasonville. Around 12:36pm on July 18, deputies responded to several complaints about cars that had windows broken and items stolen from them. A few hours later, deputies responded to a complaint from the Hilton in Grasonville where the victim had the window smashed on her Black Nissan Rogue and her Coach purse was missing. The total value of the stolen items is $1,720. Anyone with information is urged to contact Deputy Marybeth Barlow at 410-758-0770.

A July 21 call about a disorderly subject at a Stevensville convenience store led to drug charges against a Stevensville woman. Deputies responded to a call at the Shore Stop at 100 Main Street, Stevensville around 10:40pm about a disorderly woman who refused to leave. Police spoke with the suspect, 30-year-old Jacqueline A. Burdi of Stevensville, who admitted to being in possession of and using drugs. A search revealed seven smoking devices as well as plastic capsules contained suspected controlled dangerous substances. She was arrested on various drug possession and paraphernalia charges and was released from the Queen Anne’s County Detention Center on July 27 on $3,000 bond. She faces trial in Queen Anne’s County District Court on Sept. 19.

The Queen Anne’s County Sheriff’s Office is searching for a missing Stevensville man. 60-year-old Thomas Gawne of Fox Run Lane was reported missing by his daughter on Thursday, July 26 at 11:22pm. He was last seen that morning driving a blue 2018 Chevrolet Camaro with a black hood and bearing a Maryland temporary tag with the number T635783. Gawne is described as a white male, 5’2’’, weighing around 100 lbs and he has brown hair and blue eyes. He was last seen wearing a blue “Camaro” hat, blue T-shirt, khaki shorts and black Nike shoes. Anyone with information is urged to call the Queen Anne’s County Sheriff’s Office at 410-758-0770, or 9-1-1.