Police briefs

August 21, 2006

Woman dies in Frederick Co. crash

PETERSVILLE, Md. - A woman died Sunday after she was involved in one-vehicle crash at U.S. 340 at Md. 180 near Petersville in Frederick County, Md., a Maryland State Police trooper in Frederick said.

According to Cpl. Kevin Fling, the woman was flown to Washington County Hospital after the accident, which was reported at about 8:30 p.m. Sunday.

Fling said the accident still was being investigated, and he could not release any information about the woman, pending notification of her family.

One of Hagerstown's 'most wanted' caught

A man considered one of Hagerstown's "most wanted" was being held Sunday night at Washington County Detention Center after being treated for injuries he sustained in a crash, police said.


Byron N. Barrera, 32, was flown to Washington County Hospital after an accident in Montgomery County, Md., according to Hagerstown Police Department Sgt. Jim Hurd. A Washington County Sheriff's Department spokesperson said Sunday night that Barrera was being held on $19,500 bond.

According to court records, Barrera has a case pending on charges of third-degree burglary, violation of a protection order and second-degree assault. That case was in 2002.

Barrera was featured as the 119th of "Hagerstown's Most Wanted" on Sept. 10, 2003, a police press release states.

Man charged with attempted murder

FREDERICK, Md. - A Frederick man faces attempted murder charges after police responding to an assault came across several people bleeding in a parking lot at Woodlawn Apartments, the Frederick Police Department said.

According to police, an investigation into the incident at 10:11 p.m. Saturday determined that men with edged weapons attempted to rob a man walking in the area of Hickory Hills Apartments. The victim was able to free himself from his attackers, but a family member and friend who came to his aid sustained injuries in an altercation with the assailants, police said.

Two of four people believed to have taken part in the incident were arrested, police said.

According to police, Jose Antonio Mejia, 22, of 1652 Andover Lane in Frederick, was charged with first-degree and second-degree attempted murder, armed robbery and several counts of reckless endangerment and first-degree and second-degree assault. Jose Pablo Lopez, 22, of 1477 W. Key Parkway in Frederick, was charged with armed robbery, second-degree assault and reckless endangerment.

Two men face drugs, guns charges

A Martinsburg, W.Va., man wanted for assault was arrested during a traffic stop after Maryland State Police said they found drugs and guns in the vehicle he was driving.

Bail for Markus Alonzo Watts, 22, of 95 Amorette Drive, was set at $150,000 Thursday. Bail for a separate case involving assault was set at $50,000, according to Washington County District Court records.

Bail for Anthony Dewayne Briggs, 29, of Lithonia, Ga., who was a passenger in the minivan Watts was driving was set at $250,000, court records state.

According to charging documents, Watts and Briggs were traveling on Interstate 81 south of U.S. 40 at about 12:35 a.m. Wednesday when a Maryland State Police officer initiated a traffic stop for following too closely.

In the minivan, an officer allegedly saw marijuana on the floor between the driver's seat and the door. A search of the men and vehicle allegedly revealed more than $1,000 in cash, documentation of a $2,900 money transfer Tuesday in Martinsburg and bags of marijuana weighing 3.21 ounces and bags of cocaine weighing 1.33 ounces, according to charging documents.

Watts, who has a gun permit in West Virginia but allegedly has no permit in Maryland, claimed one of two guns found in the vehicle was his, the charging documents state. Both guns were loaded, the charging documents state.

Briggs was charged with six drug counts and two weapons counts, records state.

Watts also faces charges of assault in a separate case, according to court documents.

On the morning of July 29, Watts allegedly caused abrasions, lacerations and scratches when he hit and choked a woman at a residence on Manor Drive in Hagerstown. He was charged with first-degree assault, second-degree assault, reckless endangerment and false imprisonment in that case.

Pa. churches broken into during weekend

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Three Franklin County, Pa., churches were reported broken into sometime over the weekend, Pennsylvania State Police in Chambersburg said.

According to police, an unknown person or group of people gained access to Greencastle Baptist Church and Ebenezer United Brethren Church by prying open the Greencastle, Pa., buildings' front doors with unknown objects. At Mercersburg Church of God in Mercersburg, Pa., someone or a group of people pried open the side door with an unknown object, police said.

The break-in at Greencastle Baptist Church happened sometime between 2 p.m. Friday and 9:45 a.m. Saturday, police said. The break-in at the Mercersburg Church of God was sometime between 8:30 p.m. Friday and 7:30 a.m. Saturday, and the break-in at Ebenezer was sometime between 6 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. Sunday, police said.

Once inside the Mercersburg Church of God and Ebenezer United Brethren Church, the trespassers forcibly gained access to interior offices, police said. According to police, the trespassers in the Greencastle Baptist Church did not succeed at entering an interior office.

After each of the break-ins, the person or people fled, police said.

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