Correction to This Article
An item about Prince George's County Executive Jack Johnson's veto of a bill that would have expanded the number of taxis in the county incorrectly said that the veto was Johnson's second in eight years. It was the fourth veto of Johnson's eight-year tenure.
Local news roundup: Sterling youth killed in dirt-bike crash is identified

Saturday, August 7, 2010; B06

Dirt-bike crash victim is identified

A 17-year-old boy who died Thursday after crashing his dirt bike at a Sterling park has been identified as Danny S. Somoza of Sterling, the Loudoun County sheriff's office said.

He was riding in the park about 9:45 with friends when he failed to see that the gates at the entrance to the fields had been closed, struck them, and was separated from the bike, police said.

-- Caitlin Gibson

77 animals seized at Woodbridge home

A Woodbridge woman has been charged with 77 counts of animal cruelty after police searched her home and found 77 animals, authorities said Friday.

Authorities seized 27 dogs and 50 cats Aug. 4 from the home of Janet L. Hollins, 51, of the 3500 block of Buffalo Court, according to a Prince William County police news release.

-- David P. Marino-Nachison

Johnson vetoes taxi bill in Pr. George's

Prince George's County Executive Jack Johnson has issued his second veto in eight years -- this time nixing a bill that won unanimous support from the County Council to expand the number of taxis in Prince George's.

Johnson said in a letter to the council that details of the measure could backfire against elderly riders and prospective taxi drivers, many of whom have been waiting for several years to get one of the coveted Prince George's medallions. And some drivers who were in line to get medallions would lose their spot under a new system in the bill, Johnson said.

The council would need six votes to override the veto; a vote is set for Tuesday.

-- Miranda Spivack

Teens in Betts case to be tried separately

The trial of four teenagers accused of killing well-known principal Brian Betts will be broken into four separate cases, according to documents filed in Montgomery County Circuit Court this week.

-- Dan Morse

O'Malley touts DNA backlog arrests

Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley announced Friday that the state has arrested 267 suspected criminals as the direct result of clearing a backlog of more than 24,000 unanalyzed DNA samples that his administration inherited upon taking office in 2007.

The announcement, made at police headquarters in Baltimore, was the latest by O'Malley designed to demonstrate progress Maryland has made since he succeeded former governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R), who is trying to win back his job this fall.

O'Malley said the statewide arrests aided by the DNA samples included 122 burglary or robbery suspects, 16 homicide suspects and more than 100 individuals wanted for sex offenses.

A campaign spokesman for Ehrlich shot back that O'Malley's staged event -- held to mark a milestone of 250 arrests as of last month -- was the latest example of the Democratic incumbent "trying to take credit for Ehrlich's accomplishments."

Ehrlich Press Secretary Andy Barth said that Ehrlich deserved credit for funding a $24 million forensics lab where state police put samples into a database for comparisons.

-- John Wagner

Several injured in Metro station brawl

Half a dozen people were injured late Friday when a brawl broke out at the L'Enfant Plaza Metro station in Southwest Washington, authorities said.

Initial reports indicated that fighting occurred around 11 p.m. inside and outside the station.

Seven people were reported under treatment by D.C. fire and emergency services personnel.

-- Martin Weil

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