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MCPS officials offer recommendations on school safety

  • Published in Local

MCPS logoLocal school officials say there is much to be done to insure greater school safety in the county.

Officials with Montgomery County Public Schools recently published an interim report on school safety and security in its 25 high schools. Superintendent Jack Smith commissioned this report last spring after an alleged rape case — which prosecutors later dropped — involving Rockville High School students in aschool bathroom garnered national attention.

The MCPS Department of School Safety and Security collaborated with school administrators and the Office School Support and Improvement along with two outside consulting experts to develop this report.

The study’s 30 recommendations are divided into seven key priority areas, which include systemwide prevention and early intervention programs and collaboration with law enforcement and other partner agencies. The recommendations themselves range from more intensive screening for hiring security personnel, to regular staff meetings on monitoring and responding to critical incidents.

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Rockville Rams make a comeback in soccer game over RM Rockets, 3-2

  • Published in Sports

MPI RMvR 0332 EditedDespite RM Rockets keeper Vicente Quispe’s best efforts, Feliz Rivera scores what would be the game-winning point for the Rockville Rams. PHOTO BY MARK POETKER  ROCKVILLE – The Rockville Rams completed a 3-2 comeback in boys varsity soccer Saturday afternoon to defeat the Richard Montgomery Rockets.

Dominating possession and opening the score in the first half, Rockville went behind but managed to score. The Rams' efforts paid off as they scored the only goal in the second half to win the match.

"We went down early but we had to keep working hard and I think coming back and holding out for 20-plus minutes says a lot about our team and our character," said senior midfielder Bryce Orsini.

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Watkins Mill hopes to enter postseason, with 50-42 victory against Rockville

  • Published in Sports

ROCKVILLE – With the Maryland Elite Summer Basketball League playoffs kicking off on July 20, teams on the cusp of elimination scratched and clawed Monday to earn a victory that would hopefully result in that coveted playoff berth.

Watkins Mill clashed with Rockville at the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School lower school gym in a game that kicked off with the Rams digging themselves a hole they couldn’t climb out of. The squad from Gaithersburg ended up one step closer to the postseason with a 50-42 victory.

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"Facts...do not support the charges"

  • Published in Local

Prosecutor drops rape case against teen charged in alleged Rockville rape

John McCarthy at press conferenceMontgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy.                    PHOTO BY NEAL EARLEY

ROCKVILLE – A prosecutor from the State’s Attorney’s office for Montgomery County dropped the rape charge against Jose Montano, 17, in Montgomery County District Court Friday.

Assistant State’s Attorney Mary Herdman dropped the rape charge on behalf of the prosecution, spokesperson Ramon Korionoff said.

Police charged Montano and 18-year-old Henry Sanchez with first-degree rape and two counts of sexual assault of a 14-year-old girl on March 16 at Rockville High School.

According to Montgomery County State’s Attorney John McCarthy, the prosecution dropped the charges against Montano after its independent investigation showed that there was not enough evidence to prove that Montano raped the 14-year-old Rockville High School student.                                                            

“After a painstaking investigation and review of these matters, we have concluded that the facts of this case do not support the charges originally filed in this matter,” McCarthy said.

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Sanchez waives preliminary hearing for trial

  • Published in Crime

ROCKVILLE -- An attorney for Henry E. Sanchez, one of the students charged with the rape of a 14- year-old girl at Rockville High School, waived his preliminary hearing Friday.

David Hollenberg, one of the attorneys representing Sanchez, said last week he expects that a grand jury will indict his client.

“When the time does come, Mr. Sanchez will testify in front of 12 voters pulled from the rolls of the Motor Vehicle Administration that are residents in Montgomery County and he will testify to that – to indicate that this was purely a consensual sexual encounter,” Hollenber said.

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17-year-old accused in Rockville rape awaits trial

  • Published in Local

ROCKVILLE – Prosecutors will have until May 5 to decide whether to go forward with rape and sexual assault charges against Jose O. Montano, a Rockville High School student accused of raping a fellow student.

Montano, 17, along with Henry E. Sanchez, 18, was charged with first-degree rape and two first-degree sexual offense charges after police said the two Rockville High School students raped a 14-year-old girl during school hours.

District Court Judge Eugene Wolfe set Montano’s trial date for May 5, which means the state’s attorney will have until then to either proceed or drop the charges against Montano.

“Hopefully, they’ll make the right decision and realize Mr. Montano was arrested hastily without an investigation,” said Montano’s attorney, David Wooten.

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Attorney claims consensual sex in Rockville High case

  • Published in Crime

ROCKVILLE – Attorneys for one of the students charged with the rape of a 14-year old girl at Rockville High School say new evidence shows their client is innocent.

At last week’s bond hearing for Jose O. Montano, 17, attorneys representing Montano said text messages between Montano and the 14-year-old girl show that the sex between them was consensual and not rape.

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More Rockville Violence

  • Published in Local

Local lawyer claims school didn’t inform students and parents about fights

 

ROCKVILLE – Two recent altercations at Rockville High School, captured on video and then posted on Facebook have angered a local attorney representing the victim in one of the altercations.

Local attorney Rene Sandler said MCPS should have contacted parents at the school to inform them of a fight between two female students, and an attack involving two other female students that occurred March 6 and March 7.

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Rockville stays the course

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Rockville Seal

ROCKVILLE – Rockville Mayor Bridget Donnell Newton said it is too early to tell whether a proposed ordinance to prevent city officials from enforcing immigration law could cause Rockville to lose federal funding. 

“The city council hasn't had the discussion yet,” said Donnell Newton when asked about whether Rockville could lose federal funding if the City Council passes the Fostering Community Trust Ordinance.

Monday night, residents each took their turn to mostly voice their opinions on one issue – immigration. For more than hour, during the usual public comment during city council meetings, residents told the City Council to pass the Fostering Community Trust ordinance, the proposed bill that would prevent city officials from complying with federal immigration detainers.

“This will ensure that our residents, citizens and permanent residents, visa holders and yes, also undocumented immigrants feel safe reporting crime and serving as witnesses,” said John Yang, president of Asian Americans Advancing Justice, a civil rights organization.

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Federal cuts run county deep

DHR Home SlideAs it turns out the Attorney General of the United States of America doesn’t have to do a thing to Montgomery County – Mick Mulvaney already took care of that.
Sessions, speaking Monday at a White House briefing urged “Sanctuary” communities to follow the law or face the loss of DOJ. grants – and hinted at other possible retributions.
County Executive Ike Leggett says Montgomery County doesn’t fall under “Sanctuary” status, but he is aware the DOJ isn’t fond of the county because leaders here do not necessarily cooperate with Homeland Security and ICE when it comes to illegal immigrants. The county will honor detainers and turn over criminal illegal immigrants, but otherwise leaves the immigrant community alone.
When a rape allegedly involving two illegal immigrants occurred recently at Rockville High School, more than 100 people came out to protest the county and the City of Rockville’s stance on illegal immigrants. Never mind the protesters didn’t exactly understand the issue, perpetual Republican gadfly Robin Ficker - fresh from his success in forcing term limits on the county and flush with the puffed up pride of a man who promised not to run for county office but had a change of heart – jumped into politicize the tragedy with his two bits.

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