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Washington County Juvenile court briefs

January 29, 2004

Youths plead guilty to BMX store theft


After a group of teen-agers were spotted wearing stolen clothes at school in September, police were able to trace a burglary of BMX Racetrack Store at Fairgrounds Park in September to five Hagerstown youths, Hagerstown Police Detective Shawn Schultz said.

On Wednesday, Washington County Circuit Court Judge Donald E. Beachley, sitting in juvenile court, ordered that three of the youths be placed on indefinite supervised probation, perform 50 hours of community service, preferably at Fairgrounds Park, and write a letter of apology to the business owners.

The three youths pleaded guilty to theft over $500. The case of two other youths, who are brothers, was postponed because one of their attorneys was not present.

Beachley agreed to split the $2,025 in money owed to the BMX store between the five youths, totaling $405 for each, which he said must be paid within 30 days.

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Two boys, ages 12 and 13, were ordered to be home by 7:30 p.m. and not trespass at Fairgrounds Park while a third boy, age 13, was ordered to follow his mother's curfew and not go to Fairgrounds Park unless for a soccer game or practice, either of which must be supervised by a parent.

A storage shed and a registration building at BMX Racetrack Store at Fairgrounds Park on 400 N. Mulberry St. in Hagerstown were reported broken into and $775 worth of items stolen on Sept. 30 about 3:36 p.m., said Washington County Assistant State's Attorney Viki Pauler.

She said among the items stolen were 15 Mongoose pad sets valued at $75; 15 Mongoose nameplates valued at $75; 30 Hagerstown BMX T-shirts valued at $300; five long-sleeved BMX T-shirts valued at $75; three gray BMX sweatshirts valued at $75; three red BMX sweatshirts valued at $75; and 20 assorted trophies and certificates valued at $100.

A Hagerstown city police officer who reported to the scene noticed significant damage to the facility and spoke to a witness who said children were seen on the tracks, Pauler said.

One of the boys' mother stood up in court to say she quit her job so she could keep a better eye on her son. Another mother said she has since taken her son home for schooling.

Beachley told the boy whose mother quit her job that he has placed her in a bad financial situation.

"Your mother's already quit her job so she can take care of you," he said. "Why don't you get your act together?"

Youths sentenced in Pangborn vandalism


Breaking out windows and spraying fire extinguishers at Pangborn Corp. in Hagers-town might have been two teens' idea of fun in September. But on Wednesday, a Washington County Circuit Court judge told the youths - who, with two other youths, had done nearly $8,500 worth of damage to the Pangborn building - that vandalism has its consequences.

The boys pleaded guilty to fourth degree burglary and malicious destruction of property.

Circuit Judge Donald E. Beachley, sitting in juvenile court, ordered the two north Hagerstown boys, ages 13 and 15, on indefinite supervised probation, for the younger teen to be at home by 7:30 p.m. and the older teen by 9 p.m., not to trespass at Pangborn Corp. or its adjacent park and to write a letter of apology, no less than 150 words, by Friday to the company, which is at 580 Pangborn Blvd.

"You're off school today," he said. "You can work on that letter this afternoon."

Woman defends son accused of dealing


After saying that a teen caught dealing drugs in the 1970s wouldn't get more than a slap on the wrist, the mother of a boy accused of dealing drugs at his high school in September was told by a Washington County Circuit Court judge Wednesday that distribution was and always is a felony.

The woman is the mother of a 14-year-old North Hagerstown High School student who was caught by video surveillance selling a bag of marijuana to another boy in a school restroom on Sept. 26, 2003. She referred to her son's behavior as "the teen-ager years."

Circuit Judge Donald E. Beachley, sitting in juvenile court, said, "I don't know what high school you went to. ... This was never OK, as far as my recollection, this was never OK."

Washington County Assistant State's Attorney Viki Pauler said the boy admitted giving the bag of marijuana to the other boy in exchange for a CD player.

Beachley said, addressing the youth, "Typically, someone in your situation is not going home."

Because the teen had no prior violations, Beachley said he ordered the boy to serve community detention for 15 days, be in his house by 9 p.m. and be indefinitely supervised by the Department of Juvenile Services.

He also ordered the youth to sit in on court when adult drug dealers are brought up on distribution charges.

"You'll see what happens when you're an adult. You'll go to prison," he said.

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