Local digest

June 5
THE DISTRICT
Man pleads guilty
in dumping case

A government contractor tasked with cleaning out the Mall’s stormwater sewer system admitted Thursday that he often had employees dump waste into the Potomac River — a federal crime that could land him in prison for about four years, authorities said.

Patrick Brightwell, 48, of Bogart, Ga., pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to one count of violating the Clean Water Act by knowingly discharging a pollutant without a permit and one count of presenting false claims to the United States, authorities said.

Brightwell is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 3. Federal sentencing guidelines call for him to receive a prison term of 46 to 57 months, prosecutors said.

— Matt Zapotosky

VIRGINIA
Man arrested
in Loudoun assaults

Loudoun County sheriff’s deputies arrested a Sterling man in four cases in which authorities said he inappropriately touched women at area stores.

Meredith S. Wyatt, 23, was charged with five counts of simple assault.

Authorities say that on May 14 Wyatt entered a women’s bathroom stall at Dulles Town Center, where he reached into another stall and inappropriately touched a 62-year-old woman. He then fled the bathroom.

In another incident on May 30 about 11:30 a.m. at the shopping center, authorities say Wyatt reached into a bathroom stall and grabbed a 16-year-old girl. He left after the teen screamed.

Authorities say Wyatt also assaulted a 57-year-old woman on May 25 when he grabbed her from behind as she walked in the 200 block of West Holly Avenue.

At a grocery store in the 22300 block of South Sterling Boulevard, Wyatt also allegedly started talking with a 27-year-old woman and “inappropriately touched her from behind” when she walked away, authorities say..

— Dana Hedgpeth

Ex-deputy no longer
facing rape charge

A former Alexandria sheriff’s deputy is no longer charged with raping an inmate at the city jail. But Bryant Pegues will still face prosecution on the felony charge of carnal knowledge of an inmate.

Pegues, 52, of Oxon Hill was arrested May 27 and discharged from the sheriff’s office, where he had worked since 2007.

Commonwealth’s Attorney Bryan Porter and defense attorney Ryan Campbell agreed that the charge of rape by force or threat would be dropped, according to an order filed in Alexandria District Court.

The charge Pegues currently faces is a lesser one and does not carry mandatory prison time.

— Rachel Weiner

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