CALIFORNIA, Md. (July 7, 2011)—Police are searching for an armed man who vandalized a speed camera vehicle parked along the Baltimore Washington Parkway in Anne Arundel County late Wednesday morning.
The Maryland State Police say that shortly before 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, a state contractor 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 man is an employee of the company contracted by the State Highway Administration to conduct speed camera enforcement in construction zones on Maryland interstates.
The man 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.
The victim jumped out of his vehicle and crouched near the guardrail in fear for his safety, say police. 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.
State Police investigators believe that after the incident, the suspect walked back through the woods to a parking lot in the 1300-block of Concourse Road, where a number of businesses are located. It is possible he entered a vehicle parked in the lot and left the area.
The male victim has not being identified at this time by police. He was not physically injured in the incident.
Troopers from the Maryland State Police and officers from the Anne Arundel County Police responded 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. Wednesday.
State Police investigators believe there are additional witnesses to this incident who were on the Baltimore Washington Parkway when this occurred. It has been confirmed that southbound traffic was slowed and even stopped yesterday, due to motorists watching the incident occur.
The latest suspect description is that of a white male, approximately 6 tall, weighing between 200-220 pounds, possibly with a pot belly. He is believed to be in his fifties or sixties and was wearing clear glasses.