Three died while swimming in Maryland waters over Labor Day weekend; four charged with Boating While Impaired
ANNAPOLIS, MD. Natural Resources Police report that the Labor Day weekend in Maryland was deadly but not as deadly as possible given the antics of boozing boaters and others engaging in dangerous behavior.
Police say that two people died in swimming accidents and five boat accidents were reported across Maryland during the extended Labor Day holiday weekend.
In all, Maryland Natural Resources Police officers were in contact with 8,354 citizens and visitors where they conducted 1,446 boat safety inspections and arrested four people on charges of boating while intoxicated.
The five boat accidents – none of which resulted in serious injuries or property damage – were down slightly from last year, when seven accidents were reported.
Officers issued 386 citations for violations and 625 written warnings.
The body of a Montgomery County man was recovered Sept. 3, 2018, at the mouth of the Sassafras River by Maryland Natural Resources Police near where he disappeared while swimming Sept. 1, 2018.
George Edwards Barnes III, 50, of Germantown, Md., was aboard a boat with three other adults and four children on a 23-foot pleasure ride from Georgetown Yacht Basin. On the way back to the marina, the boat anchored to allow the children and three adults to go swimming. After helping the children into the boat, the two adults climbed aboard and realized Barnes was not on board.
The boaters called 911 and searched the water. Fire boats from Kent and Cecil counties and the U.S. Coast Guard assisted with a grid-pattern search, which was called off at 10:30 p.m. and resumed Sunday morning. Natural Resources Police and Maryland State Police helicopters conducted an aerial sweep.
Shortly after beginning the search on the morning of Sept. 3rd, officers found the victim about a half-mile from Betterton Beach. The body was taken to the state Medical Examiner’s Office in Baltimore City for an autopsy.
On Sept. 2nd, officers responded to reports of a drowning at Gunpowder Falls State Park near Jones Road in Baltimore County.
Mohamad Ahmady Elgouhary, 27, of Baltimore, was pronounced dead at Franklin Square Hospital. Witnesses said Elgouhary had been jumping from rocks and swimming for about a half-hour before he was seen floating face down. Attempts by witnesses and local first responders to revive him were unsuccessful. The body was taken to the state Medical Examiner’s Office for an autopsy. The investigation continues.
On August 31, 2018, officers recovered the body of a Queen Anne’s County man from Goodhands Creek near his houseboat and a work barge.
Wayne Frederick Hohman, 52, of Stevensville was taken to the State Medical Examiner’s Office. The case remains open while officers conduct interviews and investigators await autopsy results.
Maryland State Police reported on Sept. 3, 2018, that they can confirm that the body located in Harford County is Melissa Lehew, 34, of Darlington, MD, who was swept away by swift water on the evening of Aug. 31, 2018, during a fierce storm.