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Police, fire log

May 10, 1997

Martinsburg man charged in shooting

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A Martinsburg man has been charged in a shooting that occurred April 7 along railroad tracks near Falling Waters, W.Va., according to Berkeley County Magistrate Court records.

When officers arrived at the shooting scene, the victim, Paul Ritenour, said his cousin had shot him in the back of the leg accidentally, according to court records.

But police later obtained statements from Ritenour and his brother Andrew Ritenour which said a gun was fired at Ritenour "for an unknown reason."

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Robert Grant Ritenour, 18, of 751 Faulkner Ave., has been charged with wanton endangerment, which carries a jail sentence of one to five years, said court records.

Armed robbery reported in W.Va.

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Deputies are investigating an armed robbery that occurred near the Capital Heights housing complex early Friday morning.

Sheriff's deputies said a black man in his late teens and a black female in her teens approached a man on Raleigh Street about 3 a.m. and asked him for a car ride to Capital Heights, which is off Van Metre Avenue just east of Martinsburg.

After the man took the two people to Capital Heights, they got out of the car and went toward the complex. The two returned with another black male, who pulled a gun and pointed it at the victim's neck, said Lt. Kenneth LeMaster.

The man's wallet and 1993 Buick Skylark were then stolen, LeMaster said.

Police would not identify the victim.

Pa. repair shop damaged by blaze

CHAMBERSBURG, PA. - A fire damaged part of an automotive repair shop and one vehicle in Hamilton Township on Friday.

Firefighters were dispatched to Miller's Auto and Truck Repair at 9679 Gilbert Road at 4:43 p.m.

Arriving at the scene, firefighters found smoke was seeping from the doors and windows of the shop, which had closed for the day, said Gary Himes, assistant chief of the Franklin Fire Company.

One of the building's corner areas was burned, along with one car that was inside, he said.

The fire was put out in five minutes.

The cause has not been determined.

There were no injuries. No damage estimates were available.

City woman charged during visit to MCTC

A 31-year-old Hagerstown woman was charged with several drug violations Friday afternoon when she allegedly showed up at the Maryland Correctional Training Center to visit an inmate.

Linda Irene Kendrick, of 115 Bethlehem Court, was charged with possession of marijuana, possession with intent to distribute marijuana and possession with intent to distribute contraband to an inmate, according to Trooper First Class Russ Plante of the Maryland State Police.

Acting on a tip, MCTC officers approached Kendrick as she entered the visitors center at 12:30 p.m. Friday. She turned and headed back to the parking lot but was stopped when a K-9 indicated drugs were present, Plante said.

"When asked what she had, Kendrick showed two balloons containing marijuana that were in her pocket," Plante said.

A more detailed search conducted by female correctional officers turned up three more balloons in Kendrick's underwear, Plante said.

The marijuana totaled 9.2 grams, Plante said.

She was expected to go before a bond commissioner later Friday for the setting of bond, Plante said.

Hancock woman complains of theft

HANCOCK - Two men posing as good Samaritans offering to make a roof repair apparently stole $350 from a woman Tuesday, Maryland State Police said.

The 73-year-old woman told police the men knocked on the door of her home in the 14600 block of Tollgate Ridge Road and when she opened the door, they walked right in.

"They told her they had noticed that several shingles on her roof were loose," said Sgt. Mike Hegedus.

Then they said they had the material to fix the problem if she could get them a bucket of water, Hegedus said.

While she was getting the bucket of water, the men apparently ransacked the home and stole the money, police said.

The woman described the two men as Hispanic. They were in a newer model dark green van, she told police.

Hegedus said homeowners should be very cautious opening their doors to strangers.

Hagerstown man found not criminally responsible

A Hagerstown man who was charged last October in an indecent exposure incident at the Ames Department Store near the Dual Highway has been found not criminally responsible.

Leif Erickson, 52, who told Hagerstown City Police Oct. 25 his name was "God," was charged with indecent exposure and carrying concealed weapons.

According to his attorney, Matthew Leefer, Erickson has been committed to the care of the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene for the October incident and for a 1994 false fire alarm charge.

Erickson appeared in Washington County District Court Thursday.

Police said they were called to the store because a man was exposing himself while in the cashier line at the department store.

Two metal steak knives were concealed in Erickson's clothing, police said.

Three hurt in fire at Maryland Paper

WILLIAMSPORT - Three people were hurt Friday morning when a spark from a welder's torch caused a fire in a dryer at Maryland Paper at 16151 Elliott Parkway, forcing an evacuation.

Capt. Will Ball of the Williamsport Fire Company said nearly 20 firefighters from Williamsport, Halfway and Maugansville fire companies responded to the 10:30 a.m. blaze.

Ball said contractors were working on a dryer when a spark from a welder's torch caused a flash fire.

Two of the workers suffered smoke inhalation but refused to be taken to a hospital, Ball said.

A third person, a Maryland Paper worker, was taken to Washington County Hospital complaining of smoke inhalation and chest pains, Ball said.

The fire caused some damage in the dryer and duct work, Ball said. There also was some heat and smoke damage.

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