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Juvenile court briefs

August 17, 2006|by PEPPER BALLARD

Girl put on probation for harassment



A 16-year-old girl admitted to harassment Wednesday in Washington County juvenile court for pushing another South Hagerstown High School student on Valentine's Day.

The girl "deliberately bumped into" another girl and said, "You better be glad (another girl) is not here today," Washington County Deputy State's Attorney Steven Kessell said.

About two weeks later, the girl called the girl and told her "to be prepared" about a possible fight, Kessell said.

He said attempts to get mediation for the girls had been unsuccessful, so the girl who was bumped in the hallway went to either school administrators or Hagers- town Police Department Officer Brett McKoy, who was assigned to the school, to complain about the girl's harassment.

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Washington County Circuit Judge M. Kenneth Long Jr., sitting in juvenile court, ordered the girl serve indefinite supervised probation, including adhering to a 9:30 p.m. curfew.

A Washington County Public Schools representative said the girl missed 100 days of school last year. Kessell said that although this was the girl's first formal appearance in juvenile court, she previously had been referred for assaults in school.

"Clearly, there are anger management issues," he said.

Long told the girl, "You're just doing a horrible job preparing yourself for adulthood. You're going to graduate from the juvenile court into the adult court ... Those are the options that are coming along in your life."




Long: Boy has all at 'their wits' end'



Washington County Circuit Judge M. Kenneth Long Jr., sitting in juvenile court, ordered Maryland Department of Juvenile Services workers to look into an out-of-state placement for a 16-year-old boy who has admitted to his fourth escape from ordered placements at Oak Hill House.

The boy previously had admitted to escaping the Clear Spring youth residential facility, and was ordered on Wednesday to remain held at a juvenile detention facility pending a final disposition - the juvenile equivalent of sentencing.

Long told the youth that he had concerns about an evaluation, which noted the boy had "a desire to murder people" and if he had to go to jail, he "would meet up with a gang and meet the right people."

The boy's attorney, Assistant Public Defender Stephen Bergman, asked that the boy be allowed to live with his mother. Each time the youth escaped from Oak Hill House, he went home, he said.

"He wants to be home with his mother, who wants him home," he said.

Long told the youth, "I'm not comfortable if I send you on (community detention). I have no great desire to send you out of state, but I think everyone is at their wits' end."

A Department of Juvenile Services caseworker said that the youth was diagnosed with conduct disorder, which makes it difficult to find a placement for the youth, who has exhausted most in-state juvenile services with the possible exception of Morning Star Youth Academy.

The caseworker testified that the youth has been found delinquent for violating probation, misdemeanor theft and tampering with a motor vehicle. He said that the department has had several encounters with the youth over the past three years.

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