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Bail raised for man accused of stealing car assigned to Md. State Fire Marshal's Office

Charles Antonio Kemmerzell is charged with theft of $10,000 to $100,000 and theft of a motor vehicle

April 19, 2012|By DON AINES | dona@herald-mail.com

A Hagerstown man with a long history of stealing vehicles was in Washington County District Court Thursday for a bail hearing on charges he stole a car assigned to the Maryland State Fire Marshal’s Office.

Charles Antonio Kemmerzell, 54, of 228 N. Locust St. is charged with theft of $10,000 to $100,000 and theft of a motor vehicle, according to court records.

Judge Mark D. Thomas raised his bail from $5,000 to $20,000, the  records said.

The 2002 Dodge Neon was reported stolen from the rear of the state fire marshal’s Western Regional Office at 12 N. Jonathan St. on Monday morning, according to the statement of probable cause filed by Hagerstown police. The car was last seen at that address on Friday afternoon.

The car was located Tuesday morning on West Franklin Street.  Deputy Fire Marshal Ed Ernst told police he found a receipt inside the vehicle from Wal-Mart, the charging documents said.

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Surveillance video linked to the receipt showed a man and woman making a purchase and then getting into the vehicle in the parking lot, the documents said.

Police were able to identify the woman from the surveillance photo. She told police she had been dating Kemmerzell for a few weeks, the  documents said.

The woman told authorities she and Kemmerzell drove to Baltimore on Saturday to see his sister and the Inner Harbor, and then they shopped on Sunday, the documents said.

Kemmerzell told the woman he bought the car from someone studying to be a firefighter to explain the firefighting books in the car, the  documents said.

The woman also told authorities he was planning to drive to Kentucky, the documents said.

Kemmerzell has been convicted of theft 21 times, including 16 crimes directly tied to vehicle thefts, according to Assistant State’s Attorney Mark Boyer.

A computer search of Kemmerzell’s criminal records showed motor vehicle theft cases dating back to 1992, including in Washington, Anne Arundel and Baltimore counties, and Baltimore City.

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