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Arson threat alleged

A judge ordered Monday that Rodene Lee Foster, 24, of Lexington Park remain in jail without bond on charging papers alleging he threatened to burn down his apartment, also occupied by his twin 5-month-old sons.

Foster also was charged with committing a second-degree assault on a woman who responded to the Spring Valley area residence, by twice throwing her on the floor, according to a statement of probable cause from Sunday’s incident filed by St. Mary’s sheriff’s Cpl. David Corcoran. The woman’s mother notified police, and they set up a perimeter around the home until the suspect eventually came out of the residence.

The suspect denied any wrongdoing in the matter, court papers state.

Burglary suspect jailed

Ronald Joseph Strain, who turned 47 on Saturday, was jailed in lieu of $7,500 bond after the Lexington Park resident was arrested on charging papers alleging he broke into the Food Lion grocery off Great Mills Road that day and stole $275 worth of Newport cigarettes.

One or more culprits threw a cinder block through the store’s front door, and responding police detained Strain after chasing him through a nearby neighborhood, according to a statement of probable cause filed by sheriff’s deputy Glenn Knott. Two sets of footprints were found in the snow around the store, court papers state, including one set behind the business that matched Strain’s shoes.

Reward offered for tips in cases

Citizens with information about unsolved crimes in St. Mary’s can collect a cash reward by calling St. Mary’s County Crime Solvers 24 hours a day at 301-475-3333. They can withhold their name and later collect their reward through a number-identification system.

The Crime Solvers program assists law enforcement in solving open investigations that may not have been closed without the extra incentive of anonymity and an offer of a reward, providing the information leads to an arrest or indictment.

The Crime Solvers board of directors meets at 10 a.m. on the first Thursday of each month at the county’s Northern Senior Center in Charlotte Hall. To be considered for membership on the board, attend a meeting or call the Crime Solvers chairperson at 301-884-5417 for details.

Contributions to the Crime Solvers reward fund can be mailed to St. Mary’s Crime Solvers Inc. at P.O. Box 221, Mechanicsville, MD 20659.

Sheriff welcomes text-message tips

Cell phones and other handheld communication devices can be used to send text messages with tips for the St. Mary’s sheriff’s office, by texting TIP239, plus the message, to CRIMES, numerically 274637. For more information on the text-message program, go online to www.smscrimetips.com.

Police tips line open

Maryland State Police in Leonardtown operate a Tips Line at 301-475-2936, inviting anyone with information about a crime that has occurred, or they expect may occur, to anonymously report that information 24 hours a day to authorities. Citizens may use the same telephone number to report concerns to police that do not involve criminal activity.

JOHN WHARTON