3 detained in Ballenger Creek shooting, sheriff's office says

Mary Grace Keller, The Frederick News-Post, Md.
·2 min read

Mar. 23—Three people have been detained after a shooting in the Farmbrook community put schools in the Ballenger Creek area on lockout Tuesday afternoon, police say.

The Frederick County Sheriff's Office responded to the 5700 block of Charstone Court at about 12:30 p.m. for reports of multiple shots fired, a prepared statement reads. There were no injuries, spokesman Todd Wivell said.

As a precaution, six schools initiated a lockout from 12:33 to 1:02 p.m. to keep anyone from coming inside the building while police secured the scene, Sgt. Dave Keefer said. The affected schools were Ballenger Creek Elementary and Middle, Crestwood Middle, Orchard Grove Elementary, and Tuscarora Elementary and High schools. Frederick County Public Schools said the lockout briefly delayed dismissal time for middle school.

Gunfire damaged a red Toyota sedan and black Nissan Altima on Charstone Court, Cpl. Marc Destefano said. A bullet hole could be seen above the passenger side rear taillight of the Toyota at the scene. Destefano said the vehicles were unoccupied at the time of the shooting.

Aje Hill was on his way to work when he heard what sounded like "lots of gunshots, six, seven, eight, nine, 10."

"I'm going to work, I heard it so I turned around to make sure my family was OK," Hill said. By the time he got back to the court, he said the assailants were gone. Hill said this type of violence is not normal for the community.

Police are noticing an increase in activity in general lately.

"As we're seeing the weather warm up and COVID restrictions lifted, we're seeing an uptick in events like this," Wivell said.

Frederick Police Department's crime scene unit assisted, as the sheriff's office's crime scene unit was occupied with another case, according to Wivell.

Around 2 p.m., a deputy's patrol car blocked the entrance to Charstone Court at its intersection with Farmbrook Drive as police processed the scene. Yellow crime scene tape was draped parallel to the sidewalk and tied to a trashcan in front of about five homes at the entrance to the court. The crime scene tape and numbered markers were spread throughout the court near various clusters of attached homes in the residential community. Uniformed deputies took statements from witnesses.

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