30 May


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Twenty-five people from five area counties have been arrested after an opioid distribution investigation by multiple law enforcement units...


Twenty-five people from five area counties have been arrested after an opioid distribution investigation by multiple law enforcement units. The arrests were made on Thursday and Friday with suspects in Kent, Queen Anne’s, Caroline, and Anne Arundel counties in Maryland and New Castle County, Delaware and the suspects were transported to Queen Anne’s County. The Maryland State Police Heroin Investigative Unit began the investigation last fall and was centered on 46-year-old Paul Standsbury Roberts of Worton who is accused of being involved in a large-scale opioid trafficking organization in Queen Anne’s County. The investigation led to one of Roberts’ alleged suppliers, 52-year-old Roma Scott of Worton. The two men claimed to be self-employed, one in the lawn care business and the other as an event planner but these businesses were covers for the proceeds of their alleged illegal drug trade.

The Queen Anne’s County Sheriff’s Office is investigating two deaths from suspected drug overdoses in Stevensville on May 21. Police answering a report about a residence in the 300-block of Creekside Commons in Stevensville around 1:36pm found 21-year-old Anthony George Reno dead in the dining room and 21-year-old Carson David Freedman dead in an upstairs bedroom. Queen Anne’s County Sheriff Gary Hofmann said they suspect heroin but that they don’t know what it was laced with saying it was not a normal substance.

Three Centreville teenagers have been charged with burglary, trespassing and malicious destruction of property with what is being described as a senior prank gone wrong. 18-year-old Garret Logan Deese and Wyatt Patrick Pinder along with 19-year-old Robert David Chanaud, all Queen Anne’s County High School seniors were charged after a May 26 incident that damaged the school’s lion mascot. Video surveillance caught the suspects around 1:30am attempting to steal the 1,000 pound concrete statue by placing it on a dolly and moving it down the hall but then the statue fell when they tried to pick it up causing about $2,000 in damages.

Two juveniles have been arrested for arson in connection with a June 2016 fire at home on Oregon Road in Stevensville. The fire at the vacant house did about $5,000 in damage and the fire marshal’s office stated that the fire had been intentionally set. Two local juveniles were arrested on Thursday and their names have not been released due to their age. One was charged with various arson and destruction of property charges while the other was charged with burglary.

The town of Chestertown is seeking a reinstatement of a tax rebate with Kent County. At Tuesday’s Kent County Commissioners meeting, Chestertown mayor Chris Cerino spoke to the commissioners about bringing back the rebate to compensate town residents for town services that are duplicated by the county such as law enforcement and road repairs. Cerino said that the county provided the rebate from 2012 to 2015. Commissioner Ron Fithian, who as the town manager for Rock Hall recused himself from the discussion, but commissioner Bill Short said the county’s revenue is flat and will likely stay that way for the fiscal year and commissioner William Pickrum said that a rebate for the next fiscal year is not going to happen but is open to doing so in 2019. County attorney Tom Yeager and County Administrator Shelley Heller said the process for a town to seek a tax differential has to happen at least 180 days before the fiscal year starts.

Main Street Chestertown will apply for a grant to allow the town to capitalize on Kent County’s ongoing broadband installation. The grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Rural Maryland Council would help market the broadband to get residents and businesses to subscribe. Town council members Sam Shoge and Liz Gross said there is a limited time to take advantage of the broadband network because other counties, like Queen Anne’s, is moving forward with their own broadband installation.

At Monday’s workshop, the town of Rock Hall has approved a letter of support for a grant application for the Rock Hall Inn property on Main Street. The property owner is applying for a Community Legacy grant from the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development worth $250,000 to $300,000 for the project that began in 2013 but has not moved forward due to lack of funding. At last week’s workshop, new councilwoman Beth Andrews expressed concerns about the town’s budget and suggested a tax increase as a way to bolster the town’s revenue. The suggestion did not sit well with councilman Brian Nesspor who said that he and half of the town would leave if taxes were increased. Andrews, who was reviewing the town budget asked several questions about individual line items which were answered by town manager Ron Fithian and town treasurer Stephanie Loller. Andrews, a bank vice president continued to express concern that the town has little wiggle room in their budget and needs to find more revenue sources. Town manager Ron Fithian responded that there is no growth and no talk of annexation adding “we are what we are”.