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Attempted Kidnapping in Wheaton

Attempted Kidnapping in Wheaton

Detectives from the 4th District Investigative Section are investigating an assault and attempted kidnapping that occurred near the Wheaton Claridge Park.  Detectives are now releasing a composite photograph of the suspect. 

“Shop with a Cop” Initiative Returns for Second Holiday Season

For the second year, Montgomery County Police are able to offer the holiday safety initiative, “Shop with a Cop.”  It begins the day after Thanksgiving, Friday, November 26, and runs through Thursday, December 23.  It was developed to help increase the safety of shoppers, pedestrians, and drivers in the county during this active holiday season.

            Officers in all six of the Montgomery County police districts will be detailed to shopping areas in their districts to provide high visibility, extra security, and to provide reminders about driving and pedestrian safety--especially in parking lots.  Officers will be distributing approximately 5000 bright green reflective and recyclable shopping bags with a driver and pedestrian safety message printed on them.  In some locations these bags will also be distributed by shop owners.

Montgomery Police Arrest Wheaton Tire-Slashing Suspect

The Gazette reports that Fourth District officers of the Montgomery County Police Department arrested the man they believe is responsible for a rash of vandalisms to vehicles in the Wheaton Forest neighborhood of Wheaton after months of investigation and outreach to the predominantly Hispanic community affected.

Steven Ray Armstrong, 52, of 11004 Burnley Terrace in Wheaton, was arrested at 6 p.m. and charged with one count each of malicious destruction of property under $500 and race/religious harassment of a person, according to a police release issued this afternoon. Police have identified a total of 22 victims in the case, with three additional Hispanic victims coming forward in the last few days, said county police spokesman Cpl. Dan Friz.

"As word of mouth gets around that this guy will be charged, more and more victims are coming forward," he said.

Police Investigate Series of Hate-Based Vandalisms in Wheaton

            Fourth District officers and detectives have been investigating a series of tire-slashing vandalisms that occured between March 2006 and August 2010 in which the victims were primarily Hispanic. 

Many of the victims were initially reluctant to report the incidents to police; but officers worked diligently with Hispanic community members to gain their trust and eventually identified 18 Hispanic victims.  One additional victim was found to be Eastern Indian.  A male suspect has been identified but has not yet been charged.

The vandalisms occurred on Piney Branch Road and Prichard Road.   

On July 15, 2010, a 36-year-old Hispanic man who lives off Amherst Avenue contacted the Montgomery County Police 4th District’s Community Outreach Officer claiming to have been a victim of a hate crime.  Through the course of the investigation, it w

Maryland Cell Phone Ban Begins

Maryland residents and those residents who travel through Maryland need to know that on Friday, October 1, 2010 (this Friday) - cell phone use will become illegal while driving. The offense will be a "secondary" offense, meaning that offenders can only be cited with it if they are pulled over for another primary offense like speeding or running a red light.

Beginning on Friday, people who wish to make a call while driving MUST use a hands free device. The fine will be $40 for the first offense and $100 for subsequent violations of the law.

Texting while driving has been illegal for some time now and already carries a fine.

Maryland is following suit with several other states with cellular phone bans while in operation of a motor vehicle, but it is one of the only (if not the only) state to list the law as a "secondary" offense.