Police say a man walked to the back of a house in Chevy Chase and threw rocks at an expensive set of French doors and a window, causing thousands of dollars of damage.
The Chevy Chase Village Police Department said the incident happened at about 1 p.m. on April 29 in the 5500 block of Montgomery Street. The Department is hoping photos of the suspect captured by Village security cameras lead to his arrest.
The suspect, a black male about six-feet tall and 230 pounds with a red-hooded sweatshirt and blue backpack, apparently never made it into the house. Chevy Chase Village Police said he is a suspect for vandalism only.
Police said the man threw “several large rocks,” at the doors and a rear window.
Anyone with information can contact the Chevy Chase Village Police Department at 301-654-7300. Those who wish to remain anonymous can call Crime Solvers of Montgomery County at 1-866-411-8477. Crime Solvers will pay a cash reward of up to $10,000 for information provided that leads to an arrest in this crime.
Photos via Chevy Chase Village Police Department
Montgomery County Police say the removal of a Bethesda speed camera that a District Court judge ruled was improperly placed was not a result of that January court decision.
MCP Traffic Division program manager Dan McNickle said the department still believes the camera was properly placed in the 4300 block of Jones Bridge Road, though it was moved in December to another location.
There are six Portable Camera Unit (PCU) locations on Jones Bridge Road between Connecticut Avenue and Wisconsin Avenue — four on the eastbound side and two on the westbound side. McNickle said the cameras are regularly moved.
In January, District Court Judge John Moffett ruled in favor of attorney, political activist and famous sports heckler Robin Ficker, who challenged a $40 citation he received from the camera on Sept. 5, 2012.
Ficker successfully argued that the camera, at the bottom of a hill near the secure entrance to the Uniformed Services University, wasn’t legally placed because it was not within 300 feet of a residence.
Moffett agreed, rescinding Ficker’s $40 fine.
Montgomery County Police issued a press release saying the department would not review other tickets from the camera and that Moffett misinterpreted the law:
According to § 21-809(vi) of Maryland Transportation Article, a speed-monitoring system may be placed:
- On a highway in a residential district, as defined in § 21-101 of this title, with a maximum posted speed limit of 35 miles per hour, which speed limit was established using generally accepted traffic-engineering practices; or
- In a school zone established under § 21-803.1 of this subtitle.
Maryland Transportation Article § 21-101 defines a residential district as:
- Not a business district; or
- An area that adjoins and includes a highway where the property along the highway, for a distance of at least 300 feet, is improved mainly with residences or residences and buildings used for business.
Montgomery County Police said the speed camera was properly placed because it was placed on a roadway that contains at least 300 feet of residences and that the law does not say a speed camera must be placed within 300 feet of a residence.
A speed camera in the 4300 block of eastbound Jones Bridge Road that was still there after the court decision has also been moved. That camera at question in Ficker’s case was on the westbound side of the road.
Montgomery County says a recent analysis of car collisions with pedestrians proves its pedestrian safety efforts are working, despite that data showing a bump in pedestrian collisions in 2012 and seven pedestrian fatalities already this year.
An analysis at the May 8 CountyStat review of County Executive Isiah Leggett’s Pedestrian Safety Initiative showed the most severe collisions involving either debilitating injury or death decreased by 20 percent in 2012 compared to 2011. But total pedestrian collisions increased from 399 in 2011 to 423 in 2012, a result of what the county says was an increase in collisions in private parking lots and garages.
Still, the seven pedestrian fatalities in the first quarter of this year have already surpassed the six pedestrian fatalities in all of of 2012. There were 11 pedestrian fatalities in 2011 and a high of 19 in 2008.
In December, the county said pedestrian collisions had decreased by 12 percent since 2009, when County Executive Isiah Leggett’s Initiative was first funded.
“In 2007, my Pedestrian Safety Initiative outlined a blueprint for reducing pedestrian collisions in Montgomery County, and I am gratified that the plan appears to be working,” Leggett said in a release. “Through engineering, education and enforcement, as well as a broad partnership between residents, County departments and agencies, and the State Highway Administration, the severity of collisions are trending downward, particularly in the areas that need the most help. Targeted interventions really can make a difference in reducing the number of pedestrians who are injured or killed.”
In Bethesda, a group of pedestrian activists and Bethesda Elementary School parents joined together to ask the county to lower speed limits, increase fines and install crossing signals that allow pedestrians an exclusive window to cross in school zones.
Police made three arrests in two late-April residential burglary cases:
A residential burglary occurred in the 4600 block of Windsor Lane, Bethesda on Tuesday, 4/30 at approximately 4:30 a.m. Unforced entry; nothing taken.
Arrested: Male, age 31, from Washington, DC
A residential burglary occurred in the 10000 block of Sinnott Court, Bethesda on Tuesday, 4/30. Unknown entry; unknown what was taken.
Arrested: Male, age 33, from Silver Spring; Male, age 20, from Silver Spring.
The rest of the most recent 2nd District crime summary is after the jump.
Montgomery County Police today said they arrested a D.C. man for 10 second degree burglaries and other charges stemming from a string of office burglaries this year in downtown Bethesda and White Flint.
Andre Antonio Henry, 29, of the 400 block of 50th Street NE was arrested last week for a rash of burglaries police say he committed between January 28 and April 15. Police said they used surveillance video from several of the burglaries to determine all had been committed by the same suspect. Witnesses provided a description of the suspect police said matched the man seen in the video.
Police believe Henry forced his way into the offices using a flathead screwdriver before stealing electronics and other property. Police said Henry stole a credit card during one burglary and used it to buy items.
The alleged one-man crime spree played a part in 46 reported commercial office burglaries though April in the 2nd District, compared to 18 during the same stretch of time in 2012, according to 2nd District Police statistics. That’s a 155 percent spike in that category.
Police arrested Henry on May 9 in Prince George’s County without incident. He is currently being held on a $50,000 bond. He’s been charged with second-degree burglary or attempted second-degree burglary at the following properties:
- National Brokerage Associates, 11140 Rockville Pike, Suite 300, Rockville
- WRIT, 6110 Executive Boulevard, Suite 800, Rockville
- Express Title Company, 6110 Executive Boulevard, Suite 300, Rockville
- Hariton Mancuso Jones PC Office, 11140 Rockville Pike, Suite 340, Rockville
- Market Research.com, 11200 Rockville Pike, Suite 504, Rockville
- Dragon Bridge, 11200 Rockville Pike, Suite 205, Rockville
- Snyder Cohn, 11200 Rockville Pike, Suite 415, Rockville
- Spree, 7735 Old Georgetown Road, Suite 510, Bethesda
- Design to Delivery, 7910 Woodmont Avenue, Suite 300 Bethesda
- Councilor Buchanan& Mitchell, PC, 7910 Woodmont Avenue, Suite 500, Bethesda
- Information Management Services, 6110 Executive Boulevard, Suite 310, Rockville
- Zeno, 710 Woodmont Avenue, Suite 450, Bethesda
Photo via Montgomery County Police
Bethesda 2nd District Police Commander Capt. David Falcinelli said police arrested a suspect they believe is responsible for most of the rash of commercial office burglaries in downtown Bethesda and White Flint this year.
Falcinelli said police arrested the suspect on Thursday and he is believed to be responsible for similar burglaries in D.C.
The 2nd District has seen a huge spike in commercial burglaries through April of this year compared to the year-to-date numbers last year. In stats Falcinelli released on Thursday, police have reported 46 commercial office burglaries, compared to 18 during the same stretch of time in 2012.
Crime in all other listed categories — robbery, aggravated assault, residential burglary, theft from vehicles and stolen vehicles — are down compared to last year, though Falcinelli cautioned that the 2nd District has seen a spike in residential burglaries in May.
“Many of these burglaries are occurring during daytime hours and they are taking high-end jewelry. In at least one case, power has been cut to the house prior to making entry,” Falcinelli said.
Falcinelli also said a recent pedestrian safety campaign along Wisconsin Avenue and near Bethesda Elementary School on Arlington Road resulted in 175 citations for various violations. Police also ran a pedestrian crosswalk sting operation on Thursday on Democracy Boulevard in which they issued 56 citations to drivers who failed to stop for a plainclothes officers crossing a crosswalk.
There were eight pedestrian-vehicle collisions in April in the 2nd District, Falcinelli said. Police have determined the driver was at-fault in four of those incidents and the pedestrian was at-fault in three. The other one remains under investigation.
“Traffic is bad enough without further clogging up the roads with unnecessary collisions,” Falcinelli said. “Focus on your driving and walking. Be aware of your surroundings at all times.”
Chart via Montgomery County Police
The pedestrian enforcement sting, during which officers dressed in bright clothes and attempted to cross Democracy Boulevard in crosswalks, netted 77 total traffic citations. One person was arrested and charged with a drug offense.
The sting went on from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
It was the second day of the Department’s sting operations. On Wednesday, officers ran the sting in Aspen Hill and handed out 72 citations from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
This week’s edition of the Montgomery County Police 2nd District crime summary leads off with last week’s Cartier jewelry store robbery and includes a late-night assault in Woodmont Triangle:
A robbery occurred at Cartier, 5471 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda on Tuesday, 4/30 just before 11:00 a.m.
An aggravated assault occurred in the 4900 block of St Elmo Avenue, Bethesda on Friday, 4/26 at approximately 1:15 a.m. The suspects assaulted the victim, then fled.
Suspect: A/M, 25, 5’7”, 160 lbs., black hair; W/M, 23, 5’10”, 170 lbs., black hair; W/M, 24, 5’7”, 150 lbs., short hair.
The rest of the most recent crime summary is after the jump.
The single-vehicle accident left the vehicle’s passgener, 31-year-old Lok Katwal of the 5500 block of Dowgate Court in Rockville, in serious condition with life-threatening injuries.
Police identified the driver as Dawa Tamang, 39, of the same address. Tamang suffered non-life-threatening injuries, according to police.
The accident happened around 4:30 p.m. at the intersection of Connecticut Avenue and Saul Road. Police say the 2003 GMC Savana van was headed southbound on Connecticut where it went into the median. Police don’t know why.
Police closed off the southbound Connecticut while responding to the scene, reopened the stretch, then closed it again later Tuesday night until about 10 p.m. so detectives from the Collision Reconstruction Unit could continue their investigation.
Police are asking anyone who witnessed the accident and who has not yet spoken with detectives to call 240-773-6620 to speak with investigators or 301-279-8000 to be connected through the Department’s non-emergency line.
The letter, issued by the Action Committee for Transit, Washington Area Bicycle Association, and a group of parents seeking traffic changes around Bethesda Elementary School, lists 10 steps for improving unsafe walking conditions the group says costs Montgomery residents millions of dollars a year.
Those steps include expanding school zones, establishing a maximum speed limit of 20 miles per hour during school hours in school zones, doubling fines for speeding in school zones, giving pedestrians an exclusive window to cross and prohibiting right turns on red during school hours.
The group cited the Dec. 11 pedestrian incident on River Road and the Feb. 27 collision near Bethesda Elementary (in which a baby in a stroller was struck by a car but not injured) as two countywide examples of why the changes should be made.
The letter was sent to Montgomery County Department of Transportation Director Art Holmes.
Since the rash of reported pedestrian collisions in the first half of 2013, police have ratcheted up enforcement. Today, Montgomery County Police started a series of pedestrian enforcement “stings” that will continue throughout May. Between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. today, plain clothes police in bright clothing will cross a busy intersection in Aspen Hill in marked crosswalks, issuing citations to drivers that do not yield.
Just before 3 p.m., a resident called the Montgomery County Police claiming two people and two dogs — a chocolate lab and a golden retriever — had found their way into the pool at the River Falls Community Center at Horseshoe Lane and Brickyard Road.
One problem: Like most community pools, River Falls doesn’t open until Memorial Day.
Officer Rebecca Innocenti, a police spokesperson, said by the time officers arrived on Monday, the supposed swimmers and their four-pawed friends weren’t there.
No word if they took advantage of the pool’s water slide or splash-zone wading area.
Photo via River Falls Community Center Association
Montgomery County Police have released the above surveillance images of a brazen attempt this morning to steal an ATM from the Bank of America in Potomac.
Police say they received a call from bank security personnel at 1:57 a.m. for an in-progress theft. Those security officials watched remotely as crooks used a backhoe, which officials believe to be stolen, to rip the ATM from the wall of the bank at 10217 Falls Rd.
Police raced to the scene where they located the backhoe and a pick-up truck in the parking lot. The ATM, attached by chains to the backhoe, was hanging over the bed of the pick-up truck.
The suspects fled and have not been located.
Photos via Montgomery County Police
Metro Station Of The Future Architect Already Pulling Back On Plans — Within weeks of unveiling design ideas for a remodeled Bethesda Metro Station, WMATA architect Ivo Karadimov has received enough concerns from preservationists and the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts to pull back on parts of his initial proposal, including replacing concrete sections with glass. [Washington Post]
Town of Chevy Chase To Select New Council Today — The polls will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. in the Town Hall (4301 Willow Lane). Incumbents Linna Barnes and Pat Burda are looking to hold on to their seats against challenger John Bickerman. [Town of Chevy Chase]
Crooks Try To Steal ATM From Potomac Bank of America — A group of three people tried to lift the ATM at the Bank of America around 2 a.m. today near River and Falls Roads in Potomac. The group apparently used a backhoe to try to rip the ATM from the outer wall of the bank. Police believe the steel chain that remained on the ATM this morning was attached to a vehicle to tear it away from its concrete foundation. The group fled when police arrived on the scene. [WTOP]
Montgomery County’s Gun Turn-In Day Is Saturday — On May 11, Montgomery County Police will hold a gun turn-in day at three locations, two in Gaithersburg and one in Silver Spring. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Police will accept unwanted guns or ammo no questions asked. [Montgomery County Police]
Flickr photo by Steve Pulley
Police are looking into a morning assault and robbery that happened along Wisconsin Avenue near the northern edge of downtown Bethesda:
A strong-arm robbery occurred at Wisconsin Avenue and Highland Avenue, Bethesda on Monday, 4/15 at approximately 6:00 a.m. The suspect assaulted the victim, then removed property.
Suspect: B/M, 6’1”, 190 lbs., black hair, beard.
Police also reported an incident of inappropriate touching near White Flint that’s being treated as a sexual assault:
A sexual assault occurred in the 5100 block of Nicholson Lane, Bethesda on Saturday, 4/20 at approximately 5:30 p.m. The suspect inappropriately touched the victim, then fled.
Suspect: W/M, 5’10”, 210 lbs.
The rest of the most recent Montgomery County Police 2nd District crime summary is after the jump.
In a police chase that crosses into Washington D.C., such as the one that followed the Cartier smash-and-grab on Tuesday, Montgomery County Police must carefully weigh the seriousness of the crime against the legality and risk of entering another jurisdiction.
Some worry that makes areas near the Maryland-D.C. line vulnerable to criminals who know they may not be pursued into the District. The robbery on Chevy Chase’s ritzy stretch of high-end stores, nicknamed the Rodeo Drive of the East Coast, follows the January robbery at the Jimmy Choo store a few doors down.
About 40 minutes after the Cartier robbery, as police interviewed employees and reporters gathered on the sidewalk, a man reportedly shoplifted from the Gap store across the street before fleeing to the Friendship Heights Metro station on the Western Avenue border.
Montgomery County Police’s pursuit of the Cartier suspects ended a little more than two miles into D.C., according to scanner traffic.
After reportedly evading a D.C. police officer in Southeast D.C., the suspects remain at large.
Montgomery County Police spokesperson and Capt. Paul Starks said unless the crime is violent, officers won’t cross into D.C. Fresh pursuits are dangerous and often end in accidents. Liability and risk are concerns.
“We’re going into another jurisdiction. We’re leaving the state of Maryland. You know our butts are hanging out,” Starks said. “We’re not getting involved in that.”