Leaky Coolant System Leads to Arrest, Police Say

Thomas M. Hill | MCPD

Puddles of antifreeze helped to link a 21-year-old Sandy Spring man to a series of burglaries, including one in which a girl was attacked, Montgomery County police said Tuesday.

Police have charged Thomas M. Hill, 21, of the 18700 block of Brooke Road with four burglary offenses as well as two sex charges, according to online court records.

He is being held without bail, according to the online records.

Hill was charged with the following burglaries:

  • About 2 a.m. Thursday, at a home in the 800 block of Llewellyn Manor Drive. A barking dog awakened the homeowner who discovered that someone had forced entry into the home and had stolen property. Officers found a fresh stain on the victim’s driveway, indicative of a vehicle leaking antifreeze.
  • About 1:11 a.m. Friday, at a home in the 17700 block of Tree Lawn Drive. The homeowner woke up and went downstairs to get a drink of water. He discovered that someone had forced entry into the home and had stolen property. Officers also found a fresh stain on the victim’s driveway, resembling the stain that was seen the night before.
  • About 3:50 a.m. Saturday, at a home in the 100 block of Norwood Road. The homeowner heard a noise outside the home, saw that someone tried to break in and noticed a vehicle leaving the area. Again, officers found a fresh stain on the victim’s driveway that appeared to be antifreeze.
  • Also early Saturday morning, at a home in the Colesville area. The homeowner heard his daughter scream from another room, and he then heard a door slam and a vehicle leave the area. Someone had forced entry into the home and tried to sexually assault a juvenile female in her bedroom. The suspect also stole property from the home. Officers again observed a fresh stain on the victim’s driveway, similar to the stains seen on the driveways of the other homes. A dark-colored Chevy Tahoe was seen parked on the street near the victim’s home, before the burglary.

About 4:34 a.m. Saturday, officers patrolling the area of the Norwood Road burglary saw a dark-colored Chevy Tahoe traveling northbound on New Hampshire Avenue near Crystal Spring Drive.

Officers initiated a traffic stop on the Tahoe and identified the driver and sole occupant as Hill. During the traffic stop, officers found that Hill possessed property that was from the Colesville burglary and saw that Hill’s Tahoe was leaking antifreeze.

Hill was arrested and taken to the Wheaton police district station. He was then taken to the Central Processing Unit where he was charged with three counts of first-degree burglary, one count of attempted first-degree burglary, one count of attempted first-degree rape, and one count of attempted third-degree sexual offense.

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