It all started when the soft drink machine at Braday's Citgo station in Bowie took the 65 cents a teenage girl deposited, then failed to produce a soda.
When it was all over, the garage doors at the service station were crushed, a car parked in a nearby residential neighborhood had been smashed and the stolen pickup truck the 15-year-old was allegedly driving was hood-deep in the side of a Bowie home.
Police said four teen-age girls who were "cruising, drinking and horsing around" in the truck caused between $6,000 and $7,000 in damage Thursday night on a spree that began when they were frustrated by the soft drink machine.
Prince George's County police said they apprehended the 15-year-old passenger from College Park. They said they also have the names and addresses of the two other teen-agers and plan to make arrests.
"One of the girls asked me for a refund from the Coke machine and I told her to call the number on [WORD ILLEGIBLE] . The next thing I heard was the tires [WORD ILLEGIBLE] glass shattering and wood falling," said 19-Year-old Wesley L. Lyons, the attendant on duty at the gas station.
Lyons said he called police, who spotted the pick-up truck less than a mile away at the Hilltop Shopping Center in Bowie.
Officer Terrance Sutton, who spotted the four girls in the red and white truck, switched on his siren and flashing lights to stop the vehicle, police said.
Instead, the truck increased speed and turned toward his patrol car. "They were about to ram me, but I took evasive action and gave chase," Sutton said.
The pickup truck sped out of a shopping center parking lot and headed north on Race Track Road, police said, then turned a corner at Marquettee Lane and slammed into a parked car.
Sutton, who was in hot pursuit, said the truck came to a dead end, jumped the curb out of control and crashed into the home of Richard and Deborah Kellogg at 12912 Marquette La, narrowly missing the crib where the Kelloggs' 14-month-old daughter was sleeping.
The truck's four dazed occupants jumped out of the passenger's side in an attempt to evade police, who quickly arrived in force, police said. Sutton said he was able to catch two.
Police said they charged the 15-year-old, who was a passenger, was charged with destroying private property and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, police said. Both girls were turned over to juvenile authorities.
Yesterday, following a preliminary hearing, both girls were sobbing. They were told by County Juvenile Master Jacob S. Levin they would be detained until their case is heard Sept. 16.
Outside the courtroom the brother of the accused 15-year-old driver told a reporter his sister had been arrested several times previously for trespassing and being drunk.
A few minutes later, the courtroom door opened and his sister and the other girl were led out in handcuffs sobbing.
They're going to hold her!" the brother screamed, slamming his fist into his hand. He then walked to a corner and cried.
The 14-year-old's father told a reporter. "My daughter is not a good girl." He said she had been expelled from school and he had sought counseling and psychiatric help in an effort to find her motives of misbehaving.
I just don't know what to do with her anymore," the father said, tighting back tears.
He said drugs were one of his daughter's problems and she had spent fights getting "high" and had frequently run away from home. Just last week, he said, he had punished her by confining her to her bedroom. "She broke a toe and sprained an ankle by climbing out of her third-floor bedroom to escape," he said.
"Both of these girls come from middle-class families, and both of them have everything materially they would want . . . I can't see what they are searching for," he said.
The 14-year-old's father said he "hopes this incident will turn her around." He said he is going to decide whether to keep his daughter or let authorities take custody.
The 15-year-old's brother told a reporter he thought the incident might change his sister's attitude.
"She is always getting drunk and hitchhiking . . . I've warned her that it is dangerous, but she just won't stop," he said. he added that his sister and the 14-year-old are "cohorts" . . . when one does one thing the other one follows."