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Absence from school could mean removal from home

March 15, 1998|By MARLO BARNHART

Absence from school could mean removal from home

A Washington County Circuit Court judge made a promise to a 17-year-old graffiti "artist" Wednesday in juvenile court.

"If you miss one day of school, I'll take you out of your home," said Judge John H. McDowell to the Maugansville teen, who pleaded guilty to two counts of malicious destruction of property.

The school promise came about when McDowell learned the teen has missed 33 days of school this year.

The two counts of graffiti he admitted to were to a trash bin at Freddie's Express on Northern Avenue in December and a North End apartment building wall on Oct. 31.

Hagerstown City Police first spotted the teen in a vehicle in the parking lot of a Northern Avenue fast-food restaurant at 2:20 a.m. Dec. 5, police said.

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Due to the hour and a recent rash of graffiti, police watched the vehicle and its lone occupant. They saw someone get out of the car, run across Northern Avenue and return a short time later, police said.

When the car pulled out, the police followed it to The Terrace, where the driver pulled into a driveway in the 1000 block and turned off the lights, police said.

The teen was then taken into custody. Two cans of black paint were found in the car and the teen had black paint on his hand, authorities said.

The boy's father learned Wednesday that he will be responsible for the damages in all seven cases in which his son was charged.

Damage estimates have come in from the Maugansville Little League, $100; Ebersole and Sons, Maugansville Road, $100; Wareham Air Brakes, $200; Maugansville Elevator, $200; and Washington County Roads Department, $1,174.

Several victims have not yet reported damage figures, according to Washington County Assistant State's Attorney Susan Lochbaum.

Sentencing was delayed pending calculation of total restitution and a drug and alcohol evaluation of the teen.

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