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Burglar wrote note in blood, says Hagerstown florist

November 20, 2007|By ERIN JULIUS

HAGERSTOWN - A burglar who broke into a florist shop Monday morning twice answered the business' phone, the shop's co-owners said Monday afternoon.

The man also wrote in blood on a white sofa inside the Village Florist, co-owner Douglas Hutzell said Monday afternoon.

"He wrote things on our white sofa with his blood," he said.

" 'I (heart)' and what we assume was a girl's name," was written in blood on the sofa, Hutzell said in a phone interview Monday afternoon.

Derek Evan Little, 24, of 4012 Spruill Drive in Kensington, Md., was charged with burglary, malicious destruction of property and other crimes in connection with the morning incident at the florist shop, court records show.

Bond was set at $15,000, a Washington County District Court commissioner said Monday evening.

An employee of the store's landlord noticed the shop's front door was broken and called the business to notify the owners, said Tim Valerio, Village Florist's co-owner.

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The burglar answered the employee's phone calls two times, Valerio said.

Hagerstown Police and the Washington County Sheriff's Department responded to the burglary at Village Florist, 19733 Leitersburg Pike, at about 6:30 a.m. Monday, deputies said.

Officers found the burglar still in the flower shop, deputies said in a news release.

A Hagerstown police officer found him sitting on the floor, Sgt. Chad Woodring said Monday afternoon.

Hagerstown officers caught the man and later turned him over to the sheriff's department.

When the owners arrived at the shop, they found a mess, Hutzell said.

A sofa, some roses, greeting cards and the shop's front door had been damaged, officers said.

Rose petals and greeting cards were strewn around the shop and a wooden cross had been placed on a mantel, Hutzell said.

About one-third of a gingerbread house also had been eaten.

Storefronts at Long Meadow Shopping Center also were damaged Monday morning, deputies said.

Hagerstown Police were investigating broken windows at Long Meadow Liquors and a Chinese restaurant in the area, but no charges had been filed in connection with those damages, Woodring said.

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