4 armed men sought in break-in, assault

Police are searching for four armed men who broke into a house in Southeast Washington early Wednesday, held the occupants against their will and beat some of them. Police said one victim was sexually assaulted.

Police said the 2 a.m. attack in the 4200 block of Southern Avenue was not random.

The four masked men held five occupants in the basement, police said. When three other people came to the house, the armed men forced them, too, into the basement, assaulted them and took a male victim into a separate room, police said.

The armed men demanded money, threatened him and then physically and sexually assaulted him, police said.

Anyone with information is urged to call police at 202-727-9099.

— Peter Hermann

Broken main sends sewage into creek

Untreated sewage flowed into a Montgomery County creek Wednesday after a sewer pipe burst in Brookeville, a spokeswoman for the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission said.

By 11 a.m. Wednesday, WSSC officials estimated that 200,000 gallons of untreated sewage had flowed into Reddy Branch Creek, said WSSC spokeswoman Lyn Riggins. The creek ultimately flows into the Patuxent River, she said.

The break did not affect the safety of drinking water, Riggins said, because the water and sewer systems are separate.

The broken 16-inch pressurized main was discovered about 6:30 p.m. Tuesday after a resident walking his dog noticed the ground was unusually saturated. WSSC crews working at a nearby sewage pumping station found the break in woods near the 200 block of Market Street in Brookeville, Riggins said. The broken pipe was a few hundred feet from the Reddy Branch Wastewater Pumping Station on Brighton Dam Road, Riggins said.

The pumping station was shut down to relieve pressure on the pipe while repairs are made, Riggins said. Septic tank trunks are hauling away as much overflow as possible to reduce the amount flowing into the creek, she said.

— Katherine Shaver

Pr. George’s creates diversity task force

Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III (D) is setting up a task force to help assess the diversity of the county government and provide recommendations on how the county can expand employment opportunities for its growing ethnic and immigrant groups.

The nine-member panel will “assist the County as we study this important issue and make sure our government reflects the wonderful diversity that makes this County great,” Baker said Wednesday in a statement.

The task force comes after months of criticism from members of the county’s Hispanic community. Baker has been targeted for not including Latino members on the reconfigured Prince George’s school board.

The group will meet for six months and report back to Baker in April.

— Luz Lazo