D.C. settles inmate suit for $6.2 million

The District government has agreed to pay up to $6.2 million to resolve allegations in a class-
action lawsuit that it detained inmates beyond their court- ordered release dates and subjected them to unnecessary strip searches.

The agreement, filed this week, was reached after seven years of litigation and months of “extensive, often contentious, negotiations,” according to the proposed settlement, which must be approved by the court.

In 2011, U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth found that the District government had violated the rights of hundreds of inmates by detaining and strip searching them long after they had received orders for release.

Some inmates were held for days or months after they were ordered to be released. But the court found in 2008 that the Corrections Department had taken significant steps to address the longstanding problem.

William Claiborne, the lead attorney in the lawsuit, acknowledged that the District has improved its release system. He said that most defendants who go to court and are entitled to release are now let go at the courthouse instead of being returned to jail.

A spokesman for the District’s attorney general declined to comment on the agreement.

— Ann E. Marimow

Man slain at gas station identified

Prince George’s County police have identified the man who was fatally stabbed after a fight at a gas station Sunday as David J. Jenkins.

Jenkins, 27, and another man were stabbed at a gas station on Brightseat Road and Central Avenue in Capitol Heights, police said. Afterward, both drove to a neighborhood a few minutes away on Meadow Way, where police were called about 6:30 p.m, authorities said. Jenkins, a Landover resident who lived near the gas station where the fight occurred, then died. The other victim, who has not been named, was wounded but survived.

Jenkins’s family could not be immediately reached for comment.

— Lynh Bui

Suspect arrested
in car theft, assault

A man suspected of stealing a car and assaulting a U.S. Park Police officer was found at a hospital with a gunshot wound, authorities said.

Police say they found Rahman Elijah Mills, 20, at MedStar Washington Hospital Center. They arrested him in connection with the theft of a car belonging to a U.S. Park Police officer’s mother Monday night in Temple Hills.

The off-duty officer noticed the car being driven away from his mother’s home and chased it. When the officer got out of the car, the thief started driving toward the officer and the officer started shooting at the car, police said.

Police have charged Mills with attempted second-degree murder, first-degree assault and other offenses.

— Lynh Bui

Driver pleads guilty in Bay Bridge crash

The truck driver who hit a car, sending it off the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, in July has pleaded guilty to four charges.

The Capital reported that Gabor Lovasz, 30, of Canada pleaded guilty last month to negligent driving, unsafe lane changing, failure to control vehicle speed to avoid a collision, and driving in excess of a reasonable and prudent speed. He was fined $450.

Maryland Transportation Authority police investigators found that Lovasz was distracted by flashing lights behind him and didn’t notice vehicles ahead of him stopping until too late. He swerved, hitting two vehicles. One car was pushed up onto the barrier wall and the second impact sent it into the water below.

Lovasz was on his first solo trip to the United States at the time.

— Associated Press