MARYLAND

Charges to be dropped: The Maryland Court of Appeals ruled yesterday that statements made to police by a defendant in a 2002 carjacking murder in Annapolis are inadmissible, a ruling that will require Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Frank R. Weathersbee to drop the charges permanently.

The court unanimously ruled that police improperly interrogated Leeander J. Blake after he asked for a lawyer. Blake had been arrested in the fatal shooting of Straughan Lee Griffin, 51. Under Maryland law, if prosecutors challenge a pretrial ruling and lose, they cannot ever prosecute the case.

Jury deliberating: A Montgomery County jury began deliberating yesterday in the retrial of a man accused of smothering his infant son to collect $150,000 in insurance he had taken out on the boy's life.

Garrett E. Wilson, 47, faces a charge of first-degree murder. A Montgomery jury convicted him in 1999 of killing Garrett M. Wilson in 1987, but that verdict was overturned by the Maryland Court of Appeals in 2002.

HOMICIDES

* James Williams, 24, of the 1500 block of Karen Boulevard in District Heights, was found fatally shot in that block Tuesday, Prince George's County police said yesterday.

THE DISTRICT

Handgun found: D.C. police said they recovered the handgun yesterday that was used to kill 8-year-old Chelsea Cromartie. One of the men charged in the girl's May 3 slaying, Ricardo Hall, 23, told detectives that he dumped the 9mm handgun in a wooded area, police have said. The weapon was found near Sligo Creek in Montgomery County.

Compiled from reports by staff writers.