Upcoming Events

Sep
17
Thu
7:30 pm Monthly GTCCA Meeting @ Pickersgill Retirement Community
Monthly GTCCA Meeting @ Pickersgill Retirement Community
Sep 17 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Monthly membership meetingShare this:EmailMorePrintPocketShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading...
Oct
15
Thu
7:30 pm Monthly GTCCA Meeting @ Pickersgill Retirement Community
Monthly GTCCA Meeting @ Pickersgill Retirement Community
Oct 15 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Monthly membership meetingShare this:EmailMorePrintPocketShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading...
Nov
19
Thu
7:30 pm Monthly GTCCA Meeting @ Pickersgill Retirement Community
Monthly GTCCA Meeting @ Pickersgill Retirement Community
Nov 19 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Monthly membership meetingShare this:EmailMorePrintPocketShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading...
Dec
17
Thu
6:00 pm GTCCA holiday event @ TBA
GTCCA holiday event @ TBA
Dec 17 @ 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Monthly GTCCA meeting. Special networking/meet-and-greet event and holiday party. Election of officers for 2016.Share this:EmailMorePrintPocketShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading...
Jan
21
Thu
7:30 pm Monthly GTCCA Meeting @ Pickersgill Retirement Community
Monthly GTCCA Meeting @ Pickersgill Retirement Community
Jan 21 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Monthly membership meetingShare this:EmailMorePrintPocketShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading...

Categories

Information About burglary & thefts from autos

Message from Capt. Jay Landsman, Jr., Commander of Precinct 6/Towson, Baltimore County Police:

I have heard from many residents in the Gaywood and Rogers Forge area as well as the Campus Hills community regarding these crimes that continue to be a thorn in our side. We are doing several things to put a stop to the thefts and other crimes in Rodgers Forge and other communities around the precinct. The theft from auto cases and the recent burglaries are our focus right now. Uniform officers have been instructed to pay special attention to the area. Additionally, we have detectives coming in in the middle of the night to conduct surveillance in the area. We have recently made several arrests for thefts from vehicles and burglaries in Rodgers Forge and Campus Hills neighborhoods. The frustrating thing about these crimes is that they are often committed by juveniles, and juveniles arrested for nonviolent crimes are generally released to the custody of their parents. In the most recent cases in Rodgers Forge and Campus Hills, we requested that the juvenile suspects be placed and not released. Our request was denied by Juvenile Services. The problem with these offenders being released to their parents or guardians is that they are often returning to a home situation that is not healthy. We will continue to try and deter offenders and make arrests.

As far as preventive action that can be taken, there are some things that each resident can do to prevent victimization. There have been news reports and other information circulating about a hand-held device used by thieves to unlock vehicles. I do not doubt that such a device could be acquired. However, no such device has ever been recovered in Baltimore County. I do not have any solid information to provide on effective preventive measures regarding such devices. Some of the news stories recommend keeping your key fob a significant distance away from your vehicle and even storing it in a metal container or in your freezer. I cannot speak with any authority on these devices, so I am not going to tell you to place your key fob in the freezer. However, here are some of the things we know can reduce your chance of victimization:

  1. Lock your vehicle and make sure that it is locked before you walk away from it.
  2. Remove all vehicle keys from the vehicle (including keys to other vehicles that may be parked near by). We have experienced numerous cases that start out as a theft from vehicle and turn into a theft of a vehicle, because keys were left in the vehicle.
  3. Remove valuables from the vehicle. Laptops, purses, wallets, phones and other valuables should never be left in a vehicle.
  4. I know they are not as popular as they were several years ago, but an anti-theft device like “The Club” or a similar steering wheel lock is another deterrent for thieves.
  5. Leaving the porch light on in the front and back of the house is a deterrent for suspects, who want to operate under the cover of darkness.
  6. Trim branches and hedges away from windows and doorways to eliminate areas where suspects can avoid being seen as they attempt to break in to your house.
  7. Make sure that your doors have a lock on the handle and a deadbolt lock. If there is a window next to the door handle, the deadbolt should be a double key lock and not a thumb lock on the inside. The key should be hung up inside, where your family can find it easily in the event of an emergency. You can also add an additional sliding latch lock or chain on the inside of your door pretty inexpensively.
  8. Placing a piece of wood or metal in the track of your sliding glass doors and windows can make entry to your home much more difficult for criminals.
  9. If you have an attached garage, lock the door to your house, even when the garage door is closed. If a thief gains entry to your garage, you do not want to give them easy access to your house.

The suggestions that I provided are not cure-alls for criminal behavior, but they present hurdles for criminals to overcome. Most criminals do not want to work that hard. They do not want to spend a great deal of time in one place. During interviews with our detectives, arrestees have indicated that they seek out unlocked vehicles and other easy targets. I have attached a video provided by a resident in Rodgers Forge that shows a suspect approaching a vehicle and simply checking the door handle. Recently, there was another video sent out from an officer in White Marsh, which showed a suspect walk up to a vehicle and check the handles with a rag in his hand. These suspects were looking for the quick and easy target. The goal for the police and the community is to frustrate the criminals to the point that they no longer find our area desirable. We can do this through practical preventive measures, preventive patrols and by arresting suspects when these incidents occur.

Please feel free to call me at my office or stop by if you wish to talk about these issues further,

Jay

Captain Jay Landsman, Jr.
Commander
Precinct 6 / Towson
Baltimore County Police Department
115 W. Susquehanna Avenue
Towson, Maryland 21204
Office (410) 887-5507
Cell (443) 613-5833
jlandsman@baltimorecountymd.gov

Special overlay zoning district proposed for downtown Towson – Baltimore Sun

The Baltimore County Planning Board is considering a resolution by County Councilman David Marks to create a special overlay zoning district specifically for downtown Towson as the county’s urban center.

The county’s Master Plan 2020 calls for making the downtown core a more walkable commercial center that encourages compatible mixed-use projects and promotes redevelopment opportunities. However, “legislative efforts designed to achieve those goals have been enacted in a piecemeal fashion,” through numerous amendments to the county’s existing CT (Commercial, Town Center Core) zoning district since 1993, the resolution states.

The proposed Towson Urban Center or TUC overlay district would be design-oriented — aimed specifically at “refining the urban character of Towson” — and would give design guidelines for evaluating new development and redevelopment projects, according to a report by the county Planning Department, which is recommending the overlay district.

Surrounding neighborhoods would continue to use community conservation efforts as outlined in the 1992 Towson Community Plan.According to the report, there are 10 separate zoning designations and overlay districts, including the Towson Community Plan, that apply to some part of Towson’s urban center.

Source: Special overlay zoning district proposed for downtown Towson – Baltimore Sun

County’s zoning map update process starts online – Baltimore Sun

People who want to request changes to Baltimore County zoning maps can pre-file online at www.baltimorecountymd.gov/czmp.

A new web-based platform, part of the county’s Comprehensive Zoning Map Process or CZMP, offers more convenient access to information and reduces the amount of time needed to file a rezoning request, county officials say.

The open filing period for changes to county zoning maps runs from Sept. 1 to Oct. 15. The application includes instructions for finalizing a zoning change request. The county Department of Planning will provide help for those without Internet access.

The CZMP process happens every four years, allowing property owners, businesses and community organizations to petition the County Council to request zoning change on specific properties. As applications are filed, they will be posted and mapped for the public to view, as part of an official “log of issues” that the Planning Department ultimately will compile.

Source: County’s zoning map update process starts online – Baltimore Sun

Towson Row project draws criticism over lack of open space – Baltimore Sun

Opponents of a lack of green space or higher waiver fees in plans for Towson Row told a Baltimore County administrative law judge at a hearing Thursday that they were not there to try to scuttle the mixed-use development, which they like overall, but rather to draw attention to the need for more open space in the downtown core of Towson.

But they also signaled that they are considering taking their fight back to the County Council, because the hearing judge is not expected to rule on the issue of whether waiver fees should be higher. They said they are also considering appealing to Baltimore County Circuit Court.

Source: Towson Row project draws criticism over lack of open space – Baltimore Sun

The New Towson: Emerging cosmopolitan hub or chaotic patchwork of developments? – Baltimore Sun

As girls soccer coach Crosby Healy looked out at his team practicing on a field at Meadowood Regional Park in Lutherville, he saw five other teams on a field where there should have been two.

A few nights later, the coach stood his ground against three football teams trying to use the field when he was scheduled to use it for soccer practice.

The Towson resident of nine years said the two instances last fall are symptomatic of the lack of recreational space in and around Towson as it undergoes transformational development.

Source: The New Towson: Emerging cosmopolitan hub or chaotic patchwork of developments? – Baltimore Sun

A few corrections and clarifications to the article:

1) “The conversation on new developments has also included the controversial student housing complex 101 York, which Marks said recently withdrew its planning proposal after the project grew to be larger than what was initially presented.”

The second 101 York development plan was withdrawn, however the original 101 York PUD (Planned Unit Development) proposal is still going through the County development process. See GTCCA press release.

2) “County Executive Kevin Kamenetz announced in June that the county had purchased 2.5 acres of property off Aigburth Avenue to create a park in Towson.”

The addition of green space in Towson is greatly appreciated and much needed, however this particular park is not large enough to fit a baseball/softball diamond or soccer/lacrosse field. Therefore the deficit of athletic fields in Towson will not be improved.

3) “The county is also contributing $3.2 million to new turf fields at Towson High School and the Carver Center for Arts and Technology and to repurpose Patriot Plaza into a small, city park near the courthouse.”

The redevelopment of Patriot Plaza will be a great improvement, but again, does not add an athletic field for organized sports.