Saturday, August 18, 2018

MD Lt Governor Rutherford Visits Shoreline Project at Assateague State Park

Image courtesy MDNR

Maryland Lieutenant Governor Boyd Rutherford visits a shoreline resiliency and restoration project at Assateague State Park today. The innovative project funded by the Chesapeake and Atlantic Bays Coastal Fund, enhances habitat, improves public access and reduces erosion through the use of nature-based structures.  Maryland DNR recently finished the project, which consists of a series of 10 headland structures aimed at dissipating wave energy created during large storm events, and other climate and weather-based impacts.


UPDATED: MDTA Police On Lookout for Impaired Drivers this Weekend

Image courtesy MDTA Police

UPDATED – 8/18/18 – 6am – This weekend the Maryland Transportation authority Police will conduct high-visibility impaired driving law enforcement on all state roadways – but focusing on the Route 50 corridor from the Bay Bridge to Ocean City.   MDTA Police officers will stop drivers who are impaired by drugs or alcohol and arrest and prosecute them.


WGMD Fishing Report 8-17-18


Friday was day three of the Flounder Pounder Tournament held out of Paradise Grill and sponsored by Shorts Marine.  The leaderboard showed no change in the top three spots with Stalker in first, Sea Hawg in second and Team El Nino holding down third.

Amanda at Lewes Harbour Marina said Dave Walker caught a 10.5-pound flounder while pre-fishing for the Flounder Pounder Tournament.  Bob Quinn had a 5.15-pound flounder at the Old Grounds on long squid strips.  Michael DeBlasis caught an 18-inch flounder out of the Lewes and Rehoboth Canal.  Rick Mills and Jack Henriksen had a good catch of triggerfish and a porgy out of the bay.

Dave at Lighthouse View Tackle said not many anglers were out on the pier at Cape Henlopen State Park due to the heat.  Those who did fish had a fair catch of spot on bloodworms.

Burt at Hook ‘em and Cook ‘em told us there were a few flounder and sea bass caught on the head boats.  Croaker were caught outside the Inlet.

This is Eric Burnley with your WGMD fishing report.       


DSP Arrest Frankford Man for Burglary

Image courtesy DSP

Image courtesy DSP

A Frankford man has been arrested after a burglary and an attempted burglary in the Frankford area.  Delaware State Police say a witness called in a burglary in progress with the description of a man trying to break into a Lizzard Hill Road home and rode off on a bike.  Police found 30 year old Cody Daisey on the bike – he then ran off on foot, but was caught after a brief chase.  Police found him in possession of a socket wrench and drug paraphernalia and learned he entered a home on Bayard Road near Frankford in December.  Daisey is charged with 2nd degree burglary and other offenses and is free on a secured bond.


OCPD Cones with Cops Saturday

Image courtesy OCPD

The Ocean City Police invite you to have an ice cream cone with the resort officers this afternoon from 1 to 3pm at the Dumser’s Dairyland Ice Cream Factory at 501 Philadelphia Avenue.  The OCPD Mounted Unit and K-9 Units will make a special appearance and kids can get their pictures taken with McGruff the Crime Dog.  And kids 12 and under get a free cone.


Second Arrest Made in Kent County Burglaries

Image courtesy DSP

Image courtesy DSP

A Maryland woman wanted in connection with multiple burglaries in June in the Hartly, Clayton and Dover areas has been arrested by Delaware State Police.  While investigating these crimes, police identified 25 year old Destiny Thomas and her 32 year old brother, George – both of Wellington – as the suspects.  Police arrested George last week – Destiny Thomas turned herself in to Dover Police on Thursday.  She is charged with burglary, theft of a firearm and other offenses.


Funding Awarded to Delaware Tech in Georgetown for Automotive Training Center


US Senator Tom Carper and Delaware Tech President, Dr. Mark Brainard along with Sussex County’s Economic Development Director are announcing a $1.97-million grant awarded to Del Tech and Community College in Georgetown to build a new automotive training center.  The 13,500 square foot center will include 2 classrooms, a tool room, two training garages and more.  This project will protect about 90 jobs and generate $1.5-million for the state’s economy.


Felton Woman Pleads Guilty in Death of Grandson

Image © WGMD/ML

A 53 year old Felton woman will spend 22 years in prison for the death of her grandson.  In 2016, Angela Mossinger-Binghan suffocated the 3-year old child and then repeatedly and unsuccessfully tried to take her own life.  She pleaded guilty to 2nd degree murder.


DEC & Choptank Issue Beat the Peak for Friday 4 to 6pm

Delaware Electric Cooperative

Delaware & Choptank Electric Cooperative are asking members to Beat the Peak this afternoon from 4 to 6pm (7pm for Choptank).  This is because of the extremely hot weather blanketing our area.  You can help Beat the Peak by turning off unnecessary lights, delaying the use of major appliances and hot water and turning the thermostat up a few degrees.


John Atkins Sentenced

Image courtesy Lewes PD

John Atkins was in court this morning for sentencing after three arrests on domestic assault issues.  He has been at the Vaughn Correctional Center since the end of July and was unshaven and wearing prison orange with his hands and feet shackled.  The former 41st District Representative pleaded guilty to four misdemeanor charges – three of them amended from felony to misdemeanor.  He faced up to a year in prison for each charge.    Judge Paul Wallace sentenced Atkins to a year in prison, suspended for level 4 home confinement until a level 3 GPS is available, which he will wear for a year.  He is also prohibited to own any weapons for a period of five years and will undergo a mental health evaluation.   Judge Wallace also told Atkins to avoid anyplace where the victim may be.  If he violates his sentence he could be back in prison.

WGMD Fishing Report 8-16-18


Tom Traxler of State College, PA caught this 7.8lb King Mackerel while fishing out on the Razorback out of Indian River Marina with Capt. Roger Quigley. They were trolling Clarkspoons along the beach in front of Fenwick Island, DE.

Thursday was day two of the Flounder Pounder Open Tournament held out of Paradise Cove and sponsored by Short’s Marine.  As of 6:30 PM the leaders were Stalker with an 8.5-pound flounder.  Sea Hawg was second with an 8.4 and Team El Nino was in third with their 8.1 pounder.

Lewes Harbour Marina said John Conturs, Jr. caught a .96-pound king while fishing in Delaware Bay on the Angler.

Lighthouse View Tackle on the fishing pier at Cape Henlopen State Park reported the usual run of spot and croaker at high tide with the best action on bloodworms. 

Captain John Nedelka on the Karen Sue keeps on catching blues and Spanish mackerel at Fenwick Shoal.  He said several boats in the Flounder Pounder Tournament have been catching blues for bait early in the morning then moving off to their secret flounder spots.

At Hook ‘em and Cook ‘em, Chris said he is seeing flounder from the ocean and kings and blues from the surf.

This is Eric Burnley with your WGMD fishing report.       


4 File for Dewey Beach Commissioner Race

Dewey Beach Logo

Current Dewey Beach Commissioner Gary S. Persinger will be facing newcomers David Moskowitz, James Petruccelli and William J. Stevens for one of the two soon-to-be-open commissioner seats.

Comm. Courtney Riordan said that he is not running again. “It is time to step aside and give the young the chance to contribute,” he stated.  The deadline to file was 5 p.m. Thursday (today).

The Dewey Beach Civic League will be holding its Annual Candidates Forum on Saturday, August 25, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. (doors open at 3:30) at the Dewey Beach Lions Club on McKinley Ave.  Conversation and light refreshments will follow after the forum.

Election day this year is Saturday, September 15, 2018.  For more details see the town website.


Final Phase of OC Convention Center Funding Announced


The final phase of the expansion of the Roland E. Powell Convention Center in Ocean City has been funded.  Governor Larry Hogan has authorized the Maryland Stadium Authority to move forward with the project.  The $34-million project includes $20-million from the Stadium Authority and $14-million from Ocean City.  Legislation will be submitted in the 2019 General Assembly session to allow the Stadium Authority the needed capacity to finance the project.  The expansion is expected to create between 470 and 670 new jobs.


Lawsuit Filed for 3 Wilmington Firefighters & Families Charges Dereliction of Duty by 2 City Mayors

Images courtesy Wilmington Fire Dept.

Images courtesy Wilmington Fire Dept.

The families of three Wilmington firefighters who died in the line of duty battling a row house fire at Canby Estates near Elsmere in September of 2016 are suing two Wilmington Mayors, the City and others.  Attorneys with The Neuberger Firm and Jacobs & Crumplar are seeking compensatory and punitive damages and a jury trial.   They say that an official City policy that was put into effect in 2009 kept the closest water available to the fire scene away from responding.  The policy closed a fire engine with its water and hoses every shift – this took away 500 to 750 gallons of immediately available water from the fire scene.  Firefighters had to call an engine from farther away which had to travel a longer distance before any water could be put on the fire.

The attorneys also allege that another policy that was in place in Wilmington in 2013  deliberately understaffed the Fire Department – leaving many fully funded firefighter positions vacant – if they had been filled – it would have prevented the mothballing of fire engines.  The complaint charges the three firefighter deaths are due to the dereliction of duty by Mayors Dennis Williams and James Baker and their appointees.


Today we seek justice for the needless and unnecessary deaths of three heroic firefighters. Seconds count in stopping fires. But these heroes died because of an official City policy of closing fire engines and keeping the closest water away from the scene of a fire.
So eight children, the estates of their three firefighter parents, one widow, and three
firefighter survivors today filed a federal civil rights lawsuit arising from the killer September 24, 2016 residential fire. They seek compensatory and punitive damages and a jury trial against former Wilmington Mayors Dennis Williams, James Baker, the City and others.
After an exhaustive investigation, the 75 page Complaint charges that starting in 2009 “rolling bypass” became official City policy whereby: (1) a fire engine with its water and hoses was closed every shift, leaving a gaping hole in fire coverage in the City; (2) this removed 500-750 gallons of immediately available water from the fire scene; and (3) another fire engine from farther away had to travel a longer distance before any water could be put on the fire.
To make matters worse, it also is alleged, as another official policy, that in 2013 the City deliberately understaffed the Wilmington Fire Department leaving many fully funded firefighter positions vacant even though filling these positions would have prevented mothballing fire engines. Finally, in late 2015, defendants doubled the number of firefighters working in 9-5 desk jobs, removing 16 more firefighters from front line positions and stripping fire operations of even more firefighters needed to keep fire engines open.
Plaintiffs will prove that for each minute a fire is allowed to burn its intensity increases many times. Seconds and minutes matter. Delaying the arrival of water to the scene of a fire can mean the difference between life and death for firefighters and civilians. “You put water on a fire, and the problems go away,” say firefighters.
But closing a water carrying engine on September 24th removed the ability to quickly put over 5,200 gallons of water on the heart of that fire located in the rear basement of this home. Instead, for over 18 minutes no water was applied to the heart of this fire, causing a partial structural collapse, killing Lt. Christopher Leach at the scene, Sr. Firefighter Jerry Fickes shortly thereafter, and Sr. Firefighter Ardythe Hope who died several months later from thermal burns, as well as gravely injuring three others.
The Complaint charges that this calamity is due to the dereliction of duty by these two Mayors, and their appointees, who the lawsuit seeks to hold accountable. Stated co-counsel Thomas Neuberger, “The chickens have come home to roost for the City of Wilmington. All this would have been prevented if the city had let the firefighters do their jobs and get water to the fire scene as quickly as possible. Why in the world would you ever let a small fire grow into a large fire?”
Neuberger added, “Blood is on the hands of Mayors Baker and Williams who despite repeated warnings knowingly caused the deaths of three firefighting heroes who gave their lives rushing into a burning building seeking to rescue civilians believed trapped in the inferno. They were warned repeatedly that deaths would follow, but with a cold heart they continued their shocking policies.”
Separate money awards are sought for the eight children, Senior Firefighter Jerry Fickes’ widow Laura, and the three estates, as well as for the survivors: Firefighter Brad Speakman and Senior Firefighter Terry Tate who were forced into early retirement, and Lt. John Cawthray who is still on duty. The estates and survivors seek damages for their physical, emotional and mental injuries: such as terror, asphyxiation, post-traumatic stress disorder, and flashbacks. Additional economic losses include: lost wages; benefits; pension and retirement benefits; and decreased earning capacity.
The Complaint charges that the Fourteenth Amendment Constitutional right to substantive due process was denied plaintiffs in a way that shocks the judicial conscience over a seven year period where defendants affirmatively created and then hid this State created danger from Wilmington City Council.


DSP Trying to Identify Royal Farms Shoplifter

Image courtesy DSP

Image courtesy DSP

Your help is needed to identify the suspect who shoplifted from the Royal Farms on Route 24 in Oak Orchard.  Delaware State Police say around 1:30 Sunday morning the suspect hid candy and ice cream in his pockets and left the store.  If you can identify the suspect – contact Crime Stoppers at 800-TIP-3333.


USCG Medevacs Injured Man from Boat off Fenwick Island

Image courtesy U.S. Coast Guard District 5

Image courtesy U.S. Coast Guard District 5

A man with a back injury was medevaced from a pleasure boat about 8 miles off the coast of Fenwick Island on Wednesday.  Someone from the boat called the US Coast Guard just after 7am and a Motor Life Boat from Station Indian River was launched.  The man was taken to Beebe Medical Center in Lewes.


$3 Million in Funding Available to Combat Violence Against Women in MD


The Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention is accepting applications for nearly $3 million in grants from the STOP Violence Against Women Grant Program. STOP, which stands for Services, Training, Officers, Prosecutors, is open to public and non-profit organizations that serve victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. The deadline to apply for grants for the program is August 24, 2018.

Funding from the program may be used for such services as crisis intervention, therapy, prosecution of domestic violence and sexual assault cases, staff training, advocacy and accompaniment, temporary shelter, and sexual assault forensic examinations. This is the 22nd year of the grant.

The Notice of Funding Availability may be found here. More information about the program and previous awardees may be found here.

Expect Traffic Delays in Area of Circle Ave Parking Garage in Salisbury Thru Friday

Image courtesy City of Salisbury, MD

New graphics are going to be applied to the outside of the Circle Avenue parking garage in Salisbury – but today and Friday – drivers can expect lane restrictions while the structure is pressure washed.  This will disrupt the flow of traffic inside the parking structure and restrict parking on the South Division Street and Circle Avenue sides of the building.  The sidewalk will also be closed.   The wrap is expected to take a week to 10 days to complete – and that work is scheduled to begin on August 20th.  That will also cause lane restrictions on Circle Avenue and the closure of the sidewalk along the parking garage.


WGMD Fishing Report 8-15-18


Pictured with his father Nick who caught two cobia last week, Cross Ferrara, of Middletown, DE caught this 59.5lb and 48 1/2 inch cobia while fishing from his jet ski out a 1/2 a mile in front of Bethany Beach, DE using eel.

Wednesday was the first day of the Flounder Pounder Open Tournament out of Paradise Cove sponsored by Shorts Marine.  The weather wasn’t too bad and the current first place boat is Reel Struggle with a 6.5-pound flounder.  Second is Determined and third is Legal Limit both with matching 6.5 pounders.

At the fishing pier on Cape Henlopen State Park Lighthouse Tackle reported the spot and croaker bite continues with bloodworms the best bait.  Incoming to high tide has been the most productive time to fish.  A few short flounder were caught on Wednesday.

At Hook ‘em and Cook ‘em Chris told us they saw some keeper flounder caught over the Old Grounds and some blues and Spanish mackerel taken on the troll at Fenwick Island.

Clark at Old Inlet Bait and Tackle said the croaker that were so thick at the Inlet have now moved into Indian River and Rehoboth bays. 

At Rick’s Bait and Tackle the report was a 26-pound cobia caught at Fenwick Shoal by Chris Albright.  On Tuesday Chris had a 7.5-pound flounder at the Old Grounds.

This is Eric Burnley with your WGMD fishing report.       


WGMD Fishing Report 8-14-18


Denise Eddinger of Long Neck, DE caught this 7.2lb and 23 1/2 inch long tautog while fishing out at the Del-Jersey Land Reef on the “Paul B. Sands” with Capt. Randy Eddinger. Denise reported that they also had 70lbs of large and medium black sea bass along with this citation fish that was caught using squid.

Tuesday was a tad breezy, but not enough wind to cancel many fishing trips.

Last week it was the White Marlin Open and this week it’s the Flounder Pounder Tournament out of Paradise Cove Marina sponsored by Shorts Marine.  Boats may fish any three out of five days from August 15 to the 19th and the top prize is $100,000 or a new 25-foot Scout boat with all the options.  There is also a daily Calcutta worth $2,500 for the largest flounder of the day.  I would expect to see a lot of boats on the flounder grounds for the next five days.

At Lewes Harbour Marina Amanda said the Miss Kirstin had a good morning trip in the bay catching croaker, trout and blowfish.  Young lady Ashlynn Loughin caught a Delaware Youth Citation .86-pound king from the surf at Cape Henlopen

Ice House Tackle reported the Lewes and Rehoboth Canal is giving up spot, croaker and short flounder with a few keepers.

At Hook ‘em and Cook ‘em the report was flounder from the Old Grounds and blues at Fenwick Shoal.

This is Eric Burnley with your WGMD fishing report.       


WGMD Fishing Report 8-13-18


John Burbage III of Ocean View, DE caught this 79.4lb and 48 1/2 inch long cobia while fishing 2 miles off the cost of Bethany Beach, DE on Friday. John said that he snagged some live bunker then cast into the school of bunker and retrieved the line in quickly to catch this monster of a fish.

Monday was another good weather day and we heard of some decent fishing in the bay and ocean.

Cobia are quickly becoming a primary target for Delaware anglers.  Right now the state does not have a cobia plan, but one is under development and none too soon.

On Monday morning I received an email from my friend Jeff Waxman.  It seems he along with Pat Petrera and Steve Redden went out on Sunday afternoon in Pat’s 31-Bertram the Priceless looking for cobia.  The found 25 of them swimming on the surface and managed to catch three.  Two were taken on bucktails and one ate an eel.  Then I received an email from Hook ,em and Cook ‘em telling me about John Burbage III who fished two miles off of Bethany Beach where he snagged a menhaden and fed it to a 79.4-pound cobia.  That is one big cobia no matter where you fish.

Three cobia hooked n caught..all on light spinning rods…10 lb class. Two caught on my iconic Cape Fear spinner! Team worked great…Pat, Steve Redden and Jeff Waxman. Caught two on bucktails n one on eel. Once gaffed and in the boat, the real fight begins…boating a big cobia starts a heavyweight slugfest! All caught within six miles off Indian River not half mile off beach.

Flounder fishing remains good in the ocean at the Old Grounds and there seem to be a lot of croaker in Delaware Bay.  Kings are the best bet for surf fishermen.

This is Eric Burnley with your WGMD fishing report.








GOP AG Candidate Drops Out of Race


Republican candidate for Attorney General, Peggy Marshall Thomas, is withdrawing from the race for personal reason. The News Journal reports that members of her campaign contacted state GOP officials that she was leaving the race. While that will leave no Republican candidate for the AG’s office, the party could nominate a replacement candidate but they only have until September 4th, according to the state’s election calendar. However Thomas has to notify state election officials of her intent to withdraw and her name removed from the ballot, before that can happen.


New Executive Director Named for Rehoboth Main Street

Image: Carolyn Watson Photography

Image: Carolyn Watson Photography

Rehoboth Main Street has a new director. Karen Falk has been named the Executive Director of Rehoboth Main Street – she is a former Executive Director of Southern Delaware Tourism and former small business owner. She has a huge understanding of business and government relations in Rehoboth – and throughout Delaware. She hopes to use the National Main Street Center’s work scope for the betterment of the City of Rehoboth Beach.


Rehoboth Beach Man Charged with Burglary

Image courtesy DSP

A Rehoboth Beach man has been arrested for a burglary at the Edgewater Estates development Saturday night. Delaware State Police were called to Lighthouse Drive just after 6:30 for a report of a man breaking into a residence. Police learned that the suspect, identified as 26 year old Alan Stoltzfus, left the scene on a bicycle. Stoltzfus was spotted and stopped and struggled with the officers – kicking one of them before he was secured. Police learned Stoltzfus forced his way into an enclosed rear patio, then broke a glass door window to get into the house, but left the scene before going inside. Stoltzfus is charged with 2nd degree burglary and other offenses.


School Open Houses Set for Indian River Schools

courtesy IRSD

Schools in the Indian River School District will host a series of open houses during the months of August and September.

Open houses will allow students and parents to meet teachers and staff, view class lists and tour school buildings. A number of schools will host multiple sessions, with each session catering to a different grade level.

The 2018-2019 school year begins on Tuesday, September 4 for K-12 students. Preschool programs, including Project VILLAGE and TOTS, will begin on Monday, September 10.

The open house schedule is as follows:
Thursday, August 23
Indian River High School, New Student Orientation, 6:30 p.m.

Tuesday, August 28
Selbyville Middle School, Grades 7-8, 5:30-6:30 p.m.
Selbyville Middle School, Grade 6, 7:00-8:00 p.m.
Georgetown Middle School, Grade 6, 5:00-6:30 p.m.
Georgetown Middle School, Grades 7-8, 7:00-8:30 p.m.
Millsboro Middle School, Grade 6, 5:30 p.m.
Millsboro Middle School, Grades 7-8, 7:00 p.m.
Georgetown Kindergarten Center, 5:00-6:15 p.m.
Indian River High School, All Grades, 6:30 p.m.
Sussex Central High School, All Grades, 5:00-7:00 p.m.
East Millsboro Elementary School, Grades 1-5 (New Students), 5:00 p.m.
East Millsboro Elementary School, Grades 1-5 (Returning Students), 5:30-6:30 p.m.

Wednesday, August 29
Howard T. Ennis School, 5:00-6:30 p.m.
Phillip C. Showell Elementary School, Grades K-2, 5:00-6:00 p.m.
Phillip C. Showell Elementary School, Grades 3-5, 6:00-7:00 p.m.
North Georgetown Elementary School, Grade 1, 5:00-6:00 p.m.
North Georgetown Elementary School, Grades 2-5, 6:00-7:00 p.m.
East Millsboro Elementary School, PreK and Kindergarten, 5:00 p.m.
Long Neck Elementary School, All Grades, 5:30 p.m.
Lord Baltimore Elementary School, PreK and Kindergarten, 5:30 p.m.
John M. Clayton Elementary School, New Student Orientation, 5:00 p.m.
John M. Clayton Elementary School, Returning Students, 5:30-7:00 p.m.
Georgetown Elementary School, All Grades, 5:00-7:00 p.m.

Wednesday, September 5
Early Learning Center, 3:00-6:00 p.m.
Lord Baltimore Elementary School, Grades 1-2, 5:00 p.m.
Southern Delaware School of the Arts, 5:00-7:00 p.m.

Wednesday, September 12
Lord Baltimore Elementary School, Grades 3-5, 5:30 p.m.

For more information about open houses, please contact your child’s school.