After a six hour search in downtown Rising Sun, a Pennsylvania man was taken into custody about 9 a.m. Wednesday morning, October 2.
Shortly before 2 a.m., PFC Adam Dominick saw a blue Honda with Oklahoma tags heading northbound on Walnut Street, traveling at a high rate of speed. In the area of Water Wheel Drive, the driver lost control of the vehicle in a grass field across from Sun Valley Circle. The driver fled on foot. Three passengers in the vehicle were taken into custody without incident and have not been charged. Ammunition for a 9 mm handgun was found in the vehicle. Nine capped syringes, a digital scale, and a Red Bull can which was used to conceal drugs were also found.
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The driver of the vehicle, Keith Robert Wood, 48, of Landisville, Pa., eluded police. Maryland State Police, Rising Sun police, Perryville police, Maryland State Police Aviation Trooper 1, searched the area until they suspended operations shortly after 4 a.m.
The search resumed Wednesday morning about 8 a.m. Rising Sun police, troopers from the Maryland State Police barracks at North East and JFK Highway, Perryville police, sheriff's deputies, a K-9 from Havre de Grace police, and aviation returned to the area and searched a designated perimeter in and around Rising Sun. About 11 a.m., aviation located Wood in a pile of brush in the area of Spring House Court and Meadow Valley Drive. Aviation pilot John Gainey, who lives locally, was able to hover over the area while Wood was arrested.
"He thought he could hide from us," said Lt. Walter Kerr, commander of Maryland State Police helicopter operations.
Rising Sun police chief Chip Peterson said Wood was found to be in possession of "large quantities" of both crack cocaine and heroin. He also had $5,510 in U.S. Currency on his person. An additional quantity of both drugs was found in the area where he was hiding. He was also in possession of the 9 mm handgun. Wood was charged with traffic violations, drug possession, handgun charges, and fleeing and eluding.
Rising Sun Middle School and the playschool at Janes United Methodist Church were placed on lock-down for three hours Wednesday morning.
PFC Adam Dominick of Rising Sun police explained that the school and daycare were locked down at 8 a.m. after the suspect was seen in a yard in the 400 block of Mount Street. Dominick and other other officers also patrolled at bus stops where children were awaiting transportation to school. Two officers were at Rising Sun Middle. One officer was at the daycare on Walnut Street.
"What people need to understand is that every parent I saw, i told them what was going on. I sat at Maple Heights, that's a big bus stop, until he was apprehended," said Dominick.
Dr. David Hastings, assistant principal at Rising Sun Middle School said that parents would be receiving a phone call at 6:30 or 7 p.m. on Wednesday evening. The message is as follows "Good evening. I wanted to make you aware that our school went into a code yellow secure status this morning as a precautionary measure based on a recommendation by law enforcement because of a situation in the community. The code yellow lasted for approximately one hour until we were notified that the situation had been resolved. Thank you for your continued cooperation as we work together to provide a safe, secure learning environment for all students."
Principal Rick Edwards sent out an email at noon which was similar to the automated call.
"We cannot do a Connect Ed call in the middle of an emergency," said Edwards. "We didn't even know (the extent) of what was going on. The police had someone at the school. The entire time there was a strong police presence. They did a great job. We had two officers here the entire time we were locked down."