Hagerstown man charged after stolen car crashed in county park

January 09, 2012

LAPPANS — A Hagerstown man has been charged with auto theft and other offenses after a stolen car was crashed at a Washington County park Sunday night, Maryland State Police said in a news release.

Benjamin Frederick Nelson, 28, of the 200 block of North Prospect Street, was charged with auto theft, theft over $1,000, malicious destruction of property, driving under the influence of a controlled dangerous substance, negligent driving and driving at a speed too great for conditions, according to the release.

Nelson was being held at the Washington County Detention Center in lieu of $10,000 bond, the release said.

At 7:47 p.m., troopers responded to a report of a vehicle collision on Md. 68 (Lappans Road) at Devil’s Backbone County Park.  A 1992 Jaguar Sovereign had crashed into a tree on park property and its driver had left the scene, police said.

Troopers, a Boonsboro Police K-9 team, a state police helicopter and Washington County sheriff’s deputies searched the area of the park for the driver, police said.

At about 9:30 p.m., a state trooper and a Boonsboro police officer found Nelson walking near The Yellow House along Alternate Md. 40, a state police spokeswoman said.

He complained of an injury and was taken to Meritus Medical Center, said Sgt. Stacey Cain.

After he was treated and released from the hospital, Nelson was taken to the Central Booking Facility and charged, the release said.

The Jaguar was reported stolen at 8:17 p.m. from the Weis Market on Chase Six Boulevard in Boonsboro, a Washington County 911 supervisor said. The owners left the vehicle unattended and unlocked with the engine running when they walked into the store, state police said.

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