Southern Md. Police Beat: Tracy Braswell charged with torching stolen truck and arson to apartment building

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Tracy Braswell charged with torching stolen truck

Tracy Otis Braswell once again is charged with serious crimes in St. Mary's County.  Will his charges be dropped once again?

Tracy Otis Braswell once again is charged with serious crimes in St. Mary’s County. Will his charges be dropped once again?

LEXINGTON PARK, MD (June 18, 2015) – According to the Fire Marshal, Deputy State Fire Marshals charged Tracy Otis Braswell, 20, of 21345 Lexington Drive, Lexington Park, Md., with arson related charges after determining he was responsible for intentionally setting fire to the interior of a 2012 Chevrolet Silverado on February 11, 2015. The charges placed against Braswell by Deputy State Fire Marshal Don Brenneman include 2nd degree arson, malicious burning, theft of a vehicle, theft under $1,000, and malicious property destruction.  Braswell has been charged with serious criminal charges before the current ones but in plea deals with St. Mary’s States Attorney Richard Fritz has served little jail time.

Investigators have also determined he was involved with setting multiple fires inside an unoccupied apartment on June 14, 2015. The first incident occurred at approximately 12:46 a.m. in a wooded area of 46075 Signature Lane in Lexington Park where firefighters were called to extinguish a vehicle fire. Investigators determined the truck was reported stolen from ACSI Concrete Company in Lexington Park. The loss damage to the truck was estimated at nearly $20,000. No injuries were reported during the incident.

The second incident occurred at Foxchase Apartments inside apt. 310 at 45910 Foxchase Drive in Great Mills. Investigators determined multiple fires were set inside and caused an estimated $5,000 in damage to the structure and contents during the 12:55 a.m. blaze.

 No injuries were reported during the incident. Investigators acted on two search warrants and subsequently arrested Braswell at his home.

Braswell was transported to the St. Mary’s County Detention Center where he is awaiting bond review before a District Court Commissioner. The second incident continues to remain under investigation with the potential of additional charges. The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office is assisting with the investigations.

Braswell was charged with theft on April 1, 2015 by Deputy James Bare in a case set for trial on July 23, 2015.  Public Defender Sean Moran, a welfare attorney paid for by taxpayers is representing Braswell in this matter.

Braswell was charged with vehicle theft on Jan. 2, 2015 by St. Mary’s Sheriff’s Deputy Anthony Cole and with representation by welfare attorney Moran is due in St. Mary’s County District Court on July 16, 2015.

Braswell was charged with assault and retaliation against a witness on June 5, 2014 for an offense that took place on April 13, 2014. In a plea bargain with St. Mary’s States Attorney Richard Fritz on Sept. 5, 2014, the retaliation against a witness charge was dropped and Braswell entered a guilty plea to assault. On that charge he was sentenced to 3 years in prison with 2 ½ years suspended. He was sentenced to three years on probation.

Six charges of burglary and theft were placed by St. Mary’s Sheriff’s Deputy Sarah J. Lacey on Jan. 3, 2014 in St. Mary’s District Court. Makeba Gibbs, the Public Defender, paid for by taxpayers, represented Braswell in this case. All charges were dropped by St. Mary’s States Attorney Richard Fritz on March 10, 2014.

As often happens when criminal charges are dropped by the States Attorney, Braswell was indicted on four counts of burglary and theft on April 4, 2014. Fritz folded his cards on Sept. 5, 2014 and dropped all the charges again.

Alleged criminal acts of burglary and theft which took place on Sept. 4, 2013 led to three counts of crimes placed against Braswell on Sept. 5, 2013 placed by Deputy Joshua Krum.  Those charges went to St. Mary’s Circuit Court where on Sept. 4, 2014 all charges except theft under $1,000 were dropped in a plea bargain deal with St. Mary’s States Attorney Richard Fritz.  In the plea deal Braswell was sentenced to 18 months in jail. 12 months were suspended and he was given credit for 130 days already spent in jail.

On April 13, 2015, the case was reopened as Braswell had managed to trigger a new hearing by violating the terms of his probation. A warrant was served on him in the jail on that day with a notice of hearing issued on June 2, 2015.  


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