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Cops surround house

two charged

December 13, 2006|by KAREN HANNA

HAGERSTOWN - Police looking for a man with a gun closed a block of West Church Street and trained their weapons on a house that two men allegedly entered through a window Tuesday afternoon.

Police surrounded a house in the 100 block of West Church Street around 3 p.m. an used an in-car public-address system to issue orders to the people inside.

Within about 20 minutes, a female resident and two men left the house unharmed.

Michael Anthony Alford, 29, of 25 1/2 W. Franklin St., and Rufus Roy Reagan Alford, 32, of High Point, N.C., were charged with fourth-degree burglary, Hagerstown Police Sgt. Paul Kifer said. Michael Alford also was charged with fleeing and eluding police, driving without a license and reckless driving, said Washington County District Court Commissioner Aaron Lapp.

Kifer said police on Tuesday were looking for a man in a gray and green Chevrolet Caprice who allegedly pointed a gun at another person at 2:20 p.m. on Berner Avenue. At 2:57 p.m., Kifer said, a Hagerstown Fire Marshal reported seeing the Caprice in the area of the 100 block of West Church Street, and workers on the roof of a nearby church said they saw two people climb through a rear first-floor window of a home.

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"The house is surrounded," Kifer said as he repeatedly ordered everyone to leave the house. About a dozen officers with handguns stood outside the house. A Washington County Sheriff's deputy pointed a rifle at the house from across the street.

Kifer said officers also were positioned around the back of the house.

A man holding his hands above his head was ordered to the ground as he left the house.

After leaving the house, one of the men got on his knees and tried to crawl back in, Kifer said.

The woman resident, who left the house after the men, told police that she did not know the men, and she was unaware they were in the home, Kifer said

She was not held against her will, Kifer said.

"Apparently, she was in the bathroom whenever they came through the window," Kifer said.

The woman gave consent for police to search her home. A firefighter on a ladder scanned the house's flat roof. Neither a gun nor drugs were found, Kifer said.

After the incident, a Caprice with a cream-colored front hood and green sides sat behind the house. The car, which Kifer said the men were driving before the alleged burglary, had a red bow on the front bumper.

Park Place resident Lawrence Jones, who watched some of the action from the corner of Jonathan and Church streets, described the scene with one word:

"Drama," he said.

"It don't bother me. I'm immune to it, as long as they weren't doing no shooting," he said. "If they were shooting, I wouldn't have been standing here, 'cause bullets don't have no eyes, do they?"

Jones said he was coming from a store where he bought Christmas lights, and he said he saw the Caprice come "flying down the street" just before officers surrounded the house.

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