WEEKEND #9, 2018
Rehoboth Beach, Delaware
THE SATURDAY WASHOUT
More than an inch and a half of rain fell on Rehoboth this past Saturday, causing some minor flooding accompanied with some wind damage. The second block of Norfolk Street has been a chronic flooding spot again this season, one of the few remaining within the city limits. When it starts to flood, police typically block either end of the street while public works crews clear the storm grates and wait for the water to drain.
As conditions deteriorated Saturday afternoon, lifeguards kept people out of the ocean. The beach was mostly empty.
But the wind and often heavy rain did not discourage many visitors from their Coastal Highway shopping trips.
This large limb fell on this Subaru SUV in the second block of Laurel Street. No injuries were reported.
The Rehoboth DEOS weather station has an hourly breakdown on the weather conditions.
Photo courtesy Jeff Balk
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MAN CHARGED WITH 4TH DUI AFTER REHOBOTH AVE 8-VEHICLE WRECK
This past week, Rehoboth Beach police charged Martin Tuohy, 45, of Middletown, Delaware, after causing the eight-vehicle collision that occurred in the second block of Rehoboth Avenue on July 7, 2018. This was his fourth DUI offense, police said.
Despite losing his front left tire, police say Tuohy was able to keep his blue Dodge Ram pick-up moving until he finally wrecked in front of the Sandcastle Hotel.
Police have released this detailed account of the unprecedented eight-vehicle accident.
Mug shot courtesy RBPD
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REHOBOTH DUI CHECKPOINT STATS ARE NOW IN!
The Delaware Office of Highway Safety (OHS) coordinated DUI checkpoints in all three of the state's counties on Saturday, July 14, from 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. the following morning.
Officials say officers made six DUI arrests and netted an additional 96 traffic arrests or citations for other infractions, including 17 seatbelt assessments, 12 drug arrests and the apprehension of one wanted person.
The Sussex County checkpoint was on northbound Coastal Highway just north of the canal bridge outside Rehoboth. These are the totals for that particular checkpoint.
This was part of the OHS's CheckPoint StrikeForce which is now in its 15th year. On July 28, OHS will fund a DUI team enforcement initiative. Nearly 100 law enforcement officers will be traveling in pairs to patrol for impaired drivers targeting areas shown to have a high occurrence of DUI arrests.
OHS will coordinate the next Checkpoint Strikeforce effort on September 1 which will include four DUI checkpoints statewide as well as DUI patrols to deter the public from driving while impaired. OHS has started this website to help people find a safe ride home.
Graphic courtesy Delaware Office of Highway Safety
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POLICE SEEK MAN AND WOMAN WITH BLUE/PURPLE HAIR FOR THEFT
Rehoboth Beach police are asking for help identifying the couple shown in the below photo who are suspects in a theft. "It is important to note," states a police news release, "that the female pictured reportedly has blue and purple colored hair."
The theft, police said, occurred at an arcade on the Rehoboth boardwalk on Saturday, July 14, around 1:30 p.m.
Anyone with information as to the identity of the suspects pictured is asked to please contact Lt. William Sullivan at (302) 227-2577 or submit a tip through Delaware Crime Stoppers by calling 1-800-847-3333 or online.
Photo courtesy RBPD
MAN WANTED FOR RASH OF VEHICLE BREAK-INS ON COASTAL HWY
State troopers have been searching for a man who is responsible for a rash of vehicle break-ins in parking lots along Coastal Highway between Lewes and Rehoboth. The suspect is a black man in a black Nissan Altima with Maryland tags.
Between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. this past Wednesday, police say he struck in the parking lots of the Tokyo Steakhouse, Saketumi, Fresh Market and Bed Bath and Beyond.
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WOMAN GOES ON TIRADE DURING SHOPLIFTING INVESTIGATION, GETS ARRESTED
Rehoboth Beach police have charged Karisma D. Wynn-Sheeler, 23, of Montgomery Village, Md., with two counts of felony-level resisting arrest Thursday after police said they attempted to stop her for questioning in connection with a shoplifting investigation.
Around 3:40 p.m., an officer on foot patrol was contacted by an employee of Tidal Rave, which is in the ocean block of Rehoboth Avenue, who reported that a shoplifting had occurred in the store.
Wynn-Sheeler, who was leaving the area of the store, police said, was identified as the suspect. The officer attempted to stop her and have her return to the store so that he could investigate the allegation at which time she refused, police said.
According to police, Wynn-Sheeler became uncooperative and disorderly yelling profanity and causing alarm to the other members of the public in the area. When officers attempted to take her into custody, she refused and fought to prevent them from doing so.
It was later determined that Wynn-Sheeler was an acquaintance of the shoplifter, but did not commit the offense, police said. The store declined to prosecute for shoplifting, police added.
Mug shot courtesy RBPD
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CAMPAIGN SEASON MOVING ALONG IN REHOBOTH BEACH!
Former Comm. Lorraine Zellers and her husband, Tom, hosted a meet-and-greet for commissioner-candidate Gary Glass this past Saturday at their beautiful home on Silver Lake. Also attending were former Mayor Sam Cooper, his wife Diane, and former Comm. Richard Sargent.
Glass spoke of the problem of investor-owned homes, not just in Rehoboth, but nationwide. He said he would like to address ongoing city maintenance and services and help improve aesthetics. He also expressed concern about the rents being charged to businesses in town. "The rents are simply too high," Glass stated, adding that "if you sat down and did a business plan, you probably would not open a business here in Rehoboth."
"The business community will not change," he stated, "until the landlords become part of the solution."
Local taxes and fees should be more fair, he noted, adding, for example, that the hotel tax is not paid to the city in Rehoboth Beach, but to the state. He also stressed the importance of transparent and inclusive government, and making the enforcement of city ordinances more reasonable and effective.
In other local political news...
Richard "Dick" Byrne, who is also running for one of the two soon-to-be-open commissioner seats, says he continues to "go door to door and also visits businesses. I'm receiving a very favorable response because I hear frequently that people want leaders who live here full-time, who are independent, who have broad-based community experience working with all sectors of government and who will fight for the best long-term interests of our City... and that certainly describes my background."
Byrne has meet-and-greets scheduled for the following two weekends. He says people can e-mail him for info.
No updates this past weekend from the Pat Coluzzi campaign, hopefully next week.
All three candidates are scheduled for the annual Rehoboth Beach Homeowners' Association candidate forum at CAMP Rehoboth this Friday, July 27, at 6:30 p.m.
Photo courtesy Dick Byrne
MARSH GRASS LOOKING MORE TROPICAL THIS WEEKEND?
Tony Crivella's company, Dewey Beach Beautification & Raking, is responsible for sweeping the beach in Dewey. He reports that on Sunday, after Saturday's storm, he expected to find what we often call sea grass, actually marsh grass.
But yesterday, he found a mixture of grass and roots like sea grass that he would have expected to find on a reef further south in Delaware or perhaps even in Florida. In "all my years I haven't seen this much of this type of grass wash up," he added. "Perhaps the jet stream took it here?"
Photos courtesy Tony Crivella
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LAWS APPLICABLE TO BOATS NEAR SHORE
It's that time of year when the beaches are often packed and visitors and lifeguards become concerned about how close fishing and recreational boats are allowed to shore.
Capt. Douglas Messeck of the Delaware Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police says vessels "must be at slow/no-wake speed within 100 feet of any shoreline, swimmer, structure or vessel."
Also, if they are acting recklessly, negligent or inattentively, he points out, that is also a violation. Town ordinances, including those that the state parks have, may prohibit the landing or beaching of watercraft, he adds, but no regulations from Fish & Wildlife prohibit that.
Lastly, he states that personal watercraft (PWC) like Jet-Skis may not enter and jump waves in the shore break.
But otherwise, while inconvenient to lifeguards, he says there is no specific law other than these exceptions.
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"DELDOT" OFFERING YARD SIGNS AFTER TRAFFIC BARREL REMOVED
After the mysterious traffic barrel was removed from Columbia Avenue at Felton Street the previous week, Louise Holt, DelDOT spokeswoman, says DelDOT is currently discussing traffic calming efforts for Columbia and Henlopen avenues with the City of Rehoboth.
"The drum was not ours and not authorized by DelDOT," she said. But this past week, DelDOT's Traffic Section has begun supplying free yard signs, like the one below, while supplies last. Property owners on Columbia Avenue may contact Michael Somers at (302) 659-4099 to request one. The signs are for use on private property only, she said.
Legislation would be required to utilize photo-radar cameras where fines could be issued, Holt points out. DelDOT is not authorized at this time to use these types of cameras, she said. But other options are under consideration. This is one that has been popular with residents for years.
According to DelDOT, Columbia Avenue between Rehoboth Avenue and Surf Avenue had 445 vehicles for the 2017 Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT). The last year the number of vehicles was counted, she said, was 2012. DelDOT has no data for Henlopen Avenue since it is a municipal street.
Diane Scobey, who owns a home on Henlopen Avenue, says she is concerned about too many speeding cars in the 25 m.p.h. zone, especially now that it has been re-paved. "We have many runners, walkers, strollers, bikers using the street as it is the connector of the two trails," she points out. As far as Columbia Avenue, she says she would not walk or ride a bike there as it has no shoulder that's really passable.
LEE WAYNE MILLS SHOW OPENS AT GALLERY 50
Lee Wayne Mills says his latest exhibition at Gallery 50 is a survey. He calls it the "Noah count" because many of the works feature two of every kind and the show is a survey of collage works and different techniques that have fascinated him during the last 20 years. The exhibition features some new pieces, some works that have never been seen before, pieces that came out of flat files that got framed to be in this show, and pieces that he has had in his home for years that few people have ever seen.
"I am sort of closing down my life right now," he explains. "I am selling my house, and closing the studio and downsizing and doing all those things that older people have to do."
Much of Mills' work is abstract, but all of it, he points out, is driven by a landscape motif. The viewer usually finds horizons in his artworks. He uses lots of different mixed media and all collage elements are of his own making.
The cloth collage elements are from theater sets that he had created and stripped and kept the cloth. He and his late husband designed more than 250 theater sets in their lifetimes. On the reverse side "you get this beautiful patterning of paint seeping through the element of the cloth, and then I use it as an element in the collage and then I collage with all sorts of different materials," he points out.
"So in a sense, in saving all these materials and then making art, the set that used to be has become this painting," he observes. So this is Phoenix Rising he says, an example of this technique.
And here is his HAIGA 1 and 2.
Mills' show will be on display at Gallery 50 through August 2.
WOMAN IMPALED BY BEACH UMBRELLA IN O.C.--- A 46-year-old woman was struck and impaled by a beach umbrella in the chest on the beach at 54th Street around 3:10 p.m. Sunday. About six inches of the umbrella post appeared to be lodged just over her ribcage above her left breast. Rescuers cut all but two-feet of the post and took her to Jolly Roger Amusement Park to meet a state police helicopter to fly her to Peninsula Regional Medical Center. She was alert when loaded into the ambulance.
Ocean City Beach Patrol Capt. Butch Arbin says an unattended rental umbrella with a wooden pole struck the woman. The pole could not be taken apart so they had to cut it to remove the post and canvas. Luckily, it appears the injury only pierced the skin and is non-life threatening, he added. Ironically, this past week, Inside Edition featured this segment on dangerous fly-away beach umbrellas with incidents from New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland.
MAN PULLED UNRESPONSIVE FROM POINT IN CAPE HENLOPEN STATE PARK--- A man reported to be in his 60's was pulled by bystanders from the surf at "the point" around 1 p.m. on Sunday. He was initially reported as unresponsive, but was alert when taken to Beebe Hospital. It was unclear what had happened to him.
GIRL RESCUED FROM CAROUSEL POOL--- A five-year-old girl was reportedly submerged for a couple minutes in the outdoor pool at the Carousel in Ocean City. It was reported around 6:20 p.m. last Wednesday. She was conscious when taken to Peninsula Regional Medical Center.
WOMAN INJURED DURING HUDSON FIELD PERFORMANCE--- A 53-year-old woman who was on stage at Hudson Fields during the Jake Owen event last Wednesday was injured when she fell about eight to 10 feet between two stages striking an I-beam on the way down. That was reported around 10:50 p.m. She was initially reported to be unresponsive but improved as she was taken to Beebe Hospital.
TEEN ROLLS VEHICLE TRYING TO FLEE POLICE--- An 18-year-old man fleeing police at high speed rolled his car and was ejected on Fisher Road west of Cool Spring Road around 11 p.m. this past Wednesday. MCpl. Melissa Jaffe says he faces charges for disregarding a police officer, speeding, aggressive driving, reckless driving and other related traffic offenses and possession of marijuana.
2 MEDEVAC FLYOUTS FOR FALLS IN 6 HOURS--- Ocean City EMS crews responded to two falls requiring airlifts to trauma centers within a six-hour period this past week. Around 8:45 p.m. Thursday, a man coming off the sidewalk fell and struck his head at the 7-Eleven near 94th Street. He was unconscious. A few hours later, around 2:21 a.m., a woman in her 50's fell forward and struck her head on a gate on 74th Street. She too was unconscious and was flown to a trauma center.
MERR REPORT--- Because of bad weather, the annual dolphin count has been rescheduled for next Saturday, says Suzanne Thurman, MERR Institute executive director. She added that this past week MERR responded for a live dolphin temporarily stranded in a lagoon in Pot Nets-Bayside but it successfully got out once the tide started coming in. They also investigated a deceased leatherback sea turtle at Key Box Road.
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