He had two active warrants from the Frederick County Sheriff's Office and the Frederick Police Department.
Rodney Murchison Jr. (Washington County Detention Center / May 30, 2013)
Bond was more than tripled for a man charged in an armed home invasion Wednesday night in the North End of Hagerstown.
During a hearing Thursday in Washington County District Court, visiting Judge Ralph France II increased the bond for Rodney Murchison Jr. from $50,000 to $175,000, ruling that the seriousness of the crime, which involved a handgun, warranted a higher amount.
Washington County Assistant State’s Attorney Arthur Rozes had asked that the bond be raised to $150,000.
“After he was apprehended, he tried to lie about who he was because he had two warrants in another county,” Rozes said at the hearing in Hagerstown.
Murchison, 25, of no fixed address, appeared for the bond-review hearing via a closed-circuit television feed between District Court and the Washington County Detention Center, where he was being held.
Murchison was charged with one count each of armed robbery, first-degree burglary, fourth-degree burglary of a dwelling, second-degree assault and making a false statement to a peace officer, according to court documents.
Hagerstown Police Department Lt. Tom Langston said a second man who witnesses told officers was involved in the robbery remained at large Thursday.
Police were called Wednesday shortly before 10 p.m. for a report of a home invasion on Hamilton Boulevard, according to the statement of probable cause obtained Thursday from Washington County District Court.
While setting up a perimeter in the area of Hillcrest and Oak Hill avenues, an officer noticed a man walking in a nearby alley and tried to question him. The man fled, but was apprehended during a brief foot chase, police said in the statement.
Police allege in court documents that the man gave them a false name. Another officer at the scene said the same man had used yet another name in a previous interview with police.
Officers then went to the home on Hamilton Boulevard, where a husband and wife said they were attacked by a man near the front door of the residence as they returned home from a walk with their children, according to the documents.
The husband said he pulled a knife from his pocket while he struggled with the attacker, but put the knife away and crouched down when a second man entered the home with a handgun, police said in court documents.
The male resident told police that at that point, the man who grabbed him yelled that they were at the wrong house and fled.
Police said they took the man who was captured in the alley to the house where the incident occurred. The husband and wife identified him as one of the attackers, and said it was too dark to get a good description of the second intruder, according to court documents.
Officers allege they searched the man and found a folding knife with a 3-inch blade, three plastic zip ties and a black plastic bag.
Police conducted a records search on the name the man gave them and discovered a person by that name currently is incarcerated, the court documents said.
A picture of the man in custody was taken at police headquarters and run through a facial-recognition program, which returned a match for Rodney Murchison Jr., according to court records. The record search of Murchison also included pictures of tattoos that matched the man in custody, police said in court documents.
The investigation determined Murchison was wanted on two active warrants from the Frederick County (Md.) Sheriff’s Office and Frederick (Md.) Police Department.
Murchison admitted at the police station that his name was Rodney Murchison, according to court records. He told police that he went to the house on Hamilton Boulevard with another man he referred to only as “Mal” to buy a gram of heroin for $85.
He alleged to police that when a resident of the home produced only a half-gram of heroin, an argument ensued and escalated into pushing and shoving.
“Mr. Murchison denied being at the residence to commit a robbery and further denied that ‘Mal’ was armed with a handgun,” police wrote in the statement of probable cause.
Officers alleged in the documents that Murchison declined to say why he was carrying the plastic bag and zip ties.