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by BethesdaNow.com — November 29, 2012 at 3:30 pm 790 0

Montgomery County Police have set up a special task force to deal with alcohol offenses over the holiday season, including the set up of sobriety checkpoints in areas where drunk drivers have caused accidents in the past.

MCPD’s Alcohol Holiday Task Force began their full-time work last Wednesday and will continue through New Year’s Day.

Extra officers will patrol areas where drunk or drug-impaired drivers have caused accidents before. The Alcohol Initiatives Unit will do compliance checks of businesses by using undercover underage volunteers to try to buy alcohol.

Undercover officers will work in shops that carry alcohol to catch minors who use fake IDs and the department will step up its response to underage drinking parties. The sobriety checkpoints will be set up using accident and traffic data.

Police also provided a number of ways to tip them to alcohol-related offenses:

If you believe you are observing a driver impaired by alcohol or drugs

  • Call 911.  If possible, and without putting yourself in danger, obtain the license plate of the vehicle, the direction of travel of the vehicle, and a description of the vehicle (make, model, color).

If you have information on establishments that are selling alcohol to minors

  • If it is occurring at the present time, you can call the police non-emergency number at 301-279-8000.
  • If you believe it is an ongoing issue, you can call Crime Solvers toll-free at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477) or leave a Crime Solvers tip here. You can remain anonymous. Please provide as much information as possible.  The tip will be forwarded to the Alcohol Initiatives Section.

If you have information on an underage drinking party

  • If it is occurring at the present time, you can call the police non-emergency number at 301-279-8000.
  • If you have knowledge of a party planned for a future date, you can call Crime Solvers toll-free at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477) or leave a Crime Solvers tip here. You can remain anonymous. Please provide as much information as possible.  The tip will be forwarded to the Alcohol Initiatives Section.

Photo via MCPD

by BethesdaNow.com — November 29, 2012 at 2:40 pm 516 0

A pair of events looking back at the 2012 election are coming up in Bethesda.

First, the Montgomery County Young Democrats will analyze election results during their November membership meeting today from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Regional Services Center (4805 Edgemoor Lane).

Panelists include Del. Anne Kaiser (D-Dist. 14),  who represents parts of Silver Spring and East Montgomery, Maryland Democratic Party Executive Director David Sloan and political blogger David Moon, of Maryland Juice.

For more info and to RSVP, visit the event page.

On Tuesday, Dec. 4, Newsweek’s Eleanor Clift and the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza will hold a discussion to interpret the election results and the upcoming fiscal cliff. That event will take place at 7 p.m. at the Round House Theatre Bethesda (4545 East-West Highway).

Tickets to the talk, sponsored Round House Theater and Bethesda Magazine, are $15.

by BethesdaNow.com — November 29, 2012 at 1:30 pm 780 0

A Montgomery County official who has been active in pursuing “predatory towers” will be featured on ABC News’ “20/20″ program tomorrow night.

Office of Consumer Protection Director Eric Friedman was interviewed about predatory and agressive towing practices by ABC’s Jim Avila.

Friedman has been outspoken about the problems caused by private parking lot towing, which continues to be one of the main complaints his office hears. A common example is someone who parks in a space reserved for a specific business in a shopping center. When that person leaves that business for food or another service at a neighboring shop, towers see them as walk-offs and tow their cars.

The maximum fine for retrieval of a car once it gets to a tow company’s lot is $168. Tow companies can charge up to $50 to release a car if a driver returns to the car before it is towed out of a parking lot.

County officials have been working with the state to figure out how new state towing laws will work with existing county regulations. Many of them overlap.

Friedman, who said towing complaints in Bethesda could grow as a result of development and the demand for parking, worked with the county earlier this year to push Congress to enact anti-predatory towing legislation.

Friedman’s segment on “20/20″ is scheduled to run Friday night at 10 p.m. The show is doing a series of “True Confession” reports and tapped Friedman for their episode on towing, which looks at the way tow companies monitor parking lots for potential violations.

by BethesdaNow.com — November 29, 2012 at 12:45 pm 466 0

Police released a shorter-than-usual crime report for the week leading up to Thanksgiving, but it included a serious incident from Sunday, Nov. 18:

An aggravated assault occurred at Woodmont Avenue & Rugby Avenue, Bethesda on Sunday, 11/18 at approximately 11:30 p.m.  The suspect threatened the victim with a weapon and the victim fled.

Suspect: B/M, 25-28, 5’10”-5’11”, 150-180 lbs.

More from the most recent Bethesda area crime summary after the jump.

(more…)

by BethesdaNow.com — November 29, 2012 at 12:00 pm 522 0

Live music, an art show, free family portraits and a hot chocolate bar are in store for visitors to Glen Echo’s Park Winter’s Eve event on Saturday, Dec. 15.

The annual holiday celebration, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., includes a wide range of activities and incorporates the Park’s resident artists, whose studios and galleries will be open to the public.

The Photoworks Studio will be doing free holiday portrait shoots for any lingering Christmas card needs. Sign up should be done in advance.

Glen Echo Glassworks will be offering lessons in the art of glassblowing for anybody interested in making their own ornament. The cost is $35 and includes the ornament and refreshments.

The Park (7300 MacArthur Blvd., Glen Echo) is also opening its Holiday Art Show until 11 p.m. in the Popcorn Gallery. Many of the works, photos, glasswork and jewelry included, are for sale.

Student ensembles from the Park’s Adventure Theatre will perform, along with the American University Jazz Ensemble.

For more information on the event and on how to sign up for some of the activities, visit Glen Echo Park’s website.

Photo via Glen Echo Park

by BethesdaNow.com — November 29, 2012 at 10:45 am 517 0

Union Jack’s of Bethesda (4915 St Elmo Dr.) is celebrating mustache November (otherwise known as Movember) by throwing its first ever “Stash Bash” tonight.

The Movember campaign encourages men to grow out their mustaches to raise awareness for men’s health issues, especially prostate cancer.

Union Jack’s will give away fake mustaches to those who haven’t grown their own as well as mustache cozies and t-shirts. They’ll also host a best mustache competition with the winner getting a home beer-tap system.

A portion of all sales will be donated to Movember. The bar will have its Thursday $1 Miller Lite special on from 4 p.m. to close.

Fore more info, visit the event Facebook page.

by BethesdaNow.com — November 29, 2012 at 9:10 am 430 0

Duncan To Run For County Executive — At a meeting with supporters on Tuesday, former three-term County Executive Doug Duncan (D) announced he will run for his old job in the 2014 election. [Washington Post]

From Olympic Swimming to High School Swimming — Gold medalist swimmer and U.S. Olympian Katie Ledecky is back at the Stone Ridge School in Bethesda for her sophomore year and her high school swimming team’s swim season. She’ll likely swim in most events. [The Gazette]

Pet Photos With Santa on the Row — Bethesda Row is hosting pet photos with Santa this Saturday and Sunday from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Bethesda Lane. The cost per family is $10 and all the proceeds go to the Canines for Veterans program, which provides disabled veterans with service dogs. [Bethesda Row via Facebook]

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