Neighborhood Watch Crime Bulletin #48

Our Latest and Greatest Crime Bulletin October 2013
Every October 1, new laws take effect in Maryland. Of particular note to everyone who drives are the following laws:

• Driver Using Handheld Telephone While Motor Vehicle is in Motion:

This is now a PRIMARY reason for traffic stops, and fines are as follows:
1st Offense= $83 fine
2nd Offense= $140 fine
3rd and Subsequent Violations= $160 fine

• Seatbelt Use in Rear Seat:

All passengers in the rear seat are now required to be utilizing seatbelts or child restraints. This is a SECONDARY offense. Driver fined $83 per unrestrained passenger.

• Home Burglaries:

During August, through mid-September we had several residences that were burglarized. Crime Bulletin #47 was issued to alert residents about this issue. Active investigation(s) are still taking place, but to recount the facts in these cases:

There are several common characteristics of these burglaries:

-The burglaries are occurring between 5PM and 8 PM in most cases
-The residences are entered through the back doors, some of which are unlocked.
-The victims are often not absent from their residences for a short period of time which may indicate the suspects are watching to see the victims leave before attempting entry.
-Suspect may be knocking on doors of residences asking for fictitious individuals to see if the residence is occupied.
-Some residences may have been entered from off the golf course, but not all residences, which are spread throughout the community.
-One description of a possible suspect was a young adult white male operating a bicycle, but this is only one possible description. Be aware of ALL suspicious individuals.
-In nearly all cases, jewelry, money and precious metals seem to be the target of the burglar.

• Juvenile Burglary Arrests:

Two 14 year old youths were charged with Fourth Degree Burglary of a residence.

• Scam Victims:

A resident was scammed out of nearly $1,300 when she received a bogus check in the mail, cashed it, then wired money back to the scammer, who vanished.

Two other residents had their credit cards charged for bogus charges. They only discovered the the illegal charges when they audited their end of the month statements.

Another victim was scammed out of money by the “Grandpa/Grandmom Scam. A Phone call alleging a relative is in jail, so scammer says wire me the bail money.

• Active Shooter Training:

There are two elementary schools bordering Ocean Pines. In the event of a major crisis at one of those schools, there is a high probability that Ocean Pines Police would be a first responder. In conjunction with the Worcester County Sheriff’s Department, all our police officers have received training on how to properly respond to save lives in the event of a shooting incident at the schools.

• Public Awareness:

Chief Massey recently presented a segment on Scams at the Worcester County Library. He also did a Crime Prevention presentation to Neighborhood Watch members and residents at The Parke.

Join Neighborhood Watch!- Take a Bite out of Crime!!!

Chief David C. Massey, Ed.D.
Ocean Pines Police Department

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