July 6, 2011
Parkway reopened, police still seek attacker
Maryland State Police have reopened all lanes of the Baltimore Washington Parkway but are continuing to seek a person who took a hammer to a speed enforcement vehicle. The man also had a shotgun, but police said no shots were fired.
Still, the incident shut down for hours a major highway between Baltimore and Washington, creating havoc on the roadways, and sent heavily armored police to the highway and roads near BWI Airport. An empty BW Parkway is seen above, in a picture by The Sun's Jed Kirschbaum.
The latest update from Maryland State Police:
The search is continuing this evening for an armed man who vandalized a speed camera vehicle parked along the Baltimore Washington Parkway in Anne Arundel County late this morning.
The suspect is described as a white male, aged 60-65 years, approximately 5’8” tall and 150 lbs, with gray hair. He is said to have been wearing a red and blue plaid shirt, possibly flannel, with blue jeans.
The male victim is not being identified at this time. He was not physically injured in the incident. He is an employee of the company contracted by the State Highway Administration to conduct speed camera enforcement in construction zones on Maryland interstates.
Shortly before 11:30 a/m. today, the victim was parked in his white Jeep SUV, with cameras mounted on the hood, along the southbound shoulder of the BW Parkway, just north of the Rt. 195 exit. The victim said the suspect walked out of a wooded area to his right and was armed with a shotgun and a hammer.
The suspect tapped on the rear window of the Jeep with his shotgun. Alarmed, the victim began blowing his horn. The suspect then walked to the front of the Jeep and struck the windshield repeatedly, leaving large spider web type breaks in the glass.
In fear for his safety, the victim jumped out of his vehicle and crouched near the guardrail. He said the suspect was yelling, but it sounded incoherent and he could not understand what the man was saying.
Moments later, the victim said the man walked back into the woods the same way he came, still carrying the shotgun and hammer. No shots were fired.
Troopers from the Maryland State Police and officers from the Anne Arundel County Police responded quickly and established a perimeter around the area. SWAT teams from both departments responded, as did support units that included K-9 teams and State Police helicopters. Due to the proximity of an armed suspect to the BW Parkway, troopers closed the road both north and southbound for the safety of motorists.
State Highway Administration personnel responded and diverted traffic at I-695 to the north and Rt. 100 to the south. Maryland Transportation Authority Police officers also assisted with the search and in securing the area perimeter.
The immediate search of the area did not lead to the location of the suspect. The BW Parkway was reopened to traffic at about 2:45 p.m. today.
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