House fire snuffed out

Space heater causes house fire

Waldorf Volunteers and area fire/EMS departments responded to the 2500 block of Mattawoman-Beantown Road for a reported structure fire at 6:30 p.m. on Nov. 24, according to the Charles County Volunteer and EMS associations website. The caller told the 911 center they heard an explosion and fire coming out of the bedroom. Upon arrival, firefighters found two rooms had fires going and they were put out. The fire was determined to be caused by a malfunctioning space heater, and the “explosion” was the result of oxygen equipment in the room. The Red Cross was notified to assist the family. No one was injured. Twenty-eight Charles County volunteers were on scene, along with 15 members of the Prince George’s Fire Department providing mutual aid.

Two arrested in traffic stop

Two individuals were arrested following a traffic stop early on Wednesday morning, one on drug charges and one for giving a false name to an officer.

Charging documents allege that when police stopped a vehicle near Nicolet Park in Lexington Park, Christina Mae Hughes, 39, of La Plata appeared “extremely nervous,” along with the driver of the vehicle, allegedly dropping her license twice while handing it to an officer.

Following a scan of the vehicle by police dog Dyno of the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office, police allegedly found a glass smoking device containing suspected crack cocaine in the front passenger seat, of which Hughes allegedly took ownership.

In the detention center, police allegedly located a smoking device containing suspected crack cocaine residue in Hughes’ vagina.

Also during the traffic stop, Nathan Lee Davis was arrested after allegedly giving his brother’s name to an officer. After being again asked what his name was, charging papers allege that Davis “began to pull away and subsequently pushed” Trooper Evan Ruggles on the chest, then ran. Charging papers then allege that after a foot pursuit, Davis continued to resist arrest, then admitted that he had given his brother’s name.

Davis was arrested on an outstanding warrant from Charles County.

DAN BELSON

Man indicted for alleged assault on pregnant woman

A Waldorf man was indicted in Charles County Circuit Court Nov. 22 for the alleged October assault of a pregnant woman. Brent Alexander Gardner, 27, is charged with two counts of second-degree assault, first-degree assault and violent crimes against a pregnant person.

According to the statement of charges, on Oct. 18 around 4:30 p.m., police were called to Hurlock Place in Waldorf for a reported assault. At the scene, officers met with a woman who “had a pool of blood by her feet and was bleeding from her swollen lip.” The woman told police that during the course of an argument with Gardner, he allegedly punched and kicked her multiple times in the head, arms and ribs. Gardner also allegedly struck a 3-year-old child present on the chin. The victim was 12 weeks pregnant at the time of the assault, which Gardner allegedly was aware of.

Per the statement of charges, Gardner was not at the home when police arrived. Online court records show Gardner was arrested 10 days later on Oct. 28 and has been held without bond since Oct. 29. He has an initial appearance in circuit court Dec. 20.

White Plains man indicted for armed robbery, assault

A White Plains man was indicted Nov. 22 for his alleged role in an October armed robbery.

According to the statement of charges, police were called to the area of Davis Road and Proctor Place in Waldorf for a reported robbery. There, the victim told officers he’d been robbed at gunpoint by two men. The victim said he had met one of the men, who he knew as “Jay,” while hitchhiking several days prior. The day of the incident, he said, he contacted Jay about buying marijuana and the man picked him up. Jay was later allegedly identified by phone records as 29-year-old Justin Rodney Hopkins.

The victim, “Jay” and another unidentified male proceeded to Bunker Hill Tavern to buy rolling papers, the victim told officers. After that, he said, “Jay” and the unidentified male drove to nearby Proctor Place, where they allegedly stole marijuana and $380 in cash from the man at gunpoint. At one point, they allegedly hit the victim in the face with the gun.

Surveillance footage from the tavern allegedly placed the victim and Hopkins in the store together shortly before the robbery occurred. Hopkins was arrested Nov. 13 and ordered held without bond, which was upheld Nov. 14 according to online court records. Hopkins was indicted on charges of armed robbery, robbery, first-degree assault, theft and related weapons and conspiracy charges.

Fire marshal protects citizens

The Office of the State Fire Marshal is an agency of the Department of State Police dedicated to helping protect citizens from fires and explosions through a comprehensive program of education, inspection, investigation and fire engineering. For more information on fire safety, call 1-800-525-3124 or go to mdsp.maryland.gov/firemarshal/Pages/StateFireMarshal.aspx.

Cash reward offered

For those with information that will lead to the arrest or indictment of a person responsible for a crime in Charles County, Crime Solvers offer rewards up to $1,000. Anyone with information about an unsolved crime or the location of a fugitive will remain anonymous and may contact Charles County Crime Solvers by calling 1-866-411-TIPS. Tips can also be submitted online at www.charlescountycrimesolvers.com or by using the P3Intel mobile app on a smartphone, which can be found in the Android and Apple stores by searchingP3tips.

Sheriff’s office established in 1658

The Charles County Sheriff’s Office is a full-service law enforcement agency comprised of more than 600 police, corrections and civilian personnel responsible for protecting more than 160,000 residents. The sheriff’s office was accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation of Law Enforcement Agencies in 2001 and has been designated as a CALEA Gold Standard of Excellence agency since 2011. Established in 1658, the CCSO is one of the oldest law enforcement agencies in the United States. For more information, visit www.ccso.us.

LINDSAY RENNER-WOOD

LINDSAY RENNER-WOOD