WASHINGTON – Police say three recent attacks that took place under a tunnel on the Capital Crescent Trail were teen-on-teen crime and may have been related.
It appears the victims and the suspects may have known each other, says Capt. Paul Starks, spokesman for the Montgomery County Police Department.
The most recent incident occurred at 8:50 on Sept. 29, when two 16-year-old boys were on the portion of the trail that runs under Wisconsin Avenue in downtown Bethesda. Another group of five to six teenage boys approached one of the two, grabbed him and demanded money. The victim’s friend tried to intervene and was punched in the face and head, police say.
The offending group of teens fled without getting any money and the victims returned home. The boy who’d been punched was treated at a local hospital.
The two earlier attacks, on July 6 and July 20, were similar in nature and occurred at the same location.
Two boys have been charged in the July 6 incident. No arrests have been made in the July 20 incident. And on Oct. 4, a 16-year-old boy from Rockville was arrested for the September incident. He was charged with 2nd degree assault and attempted robbery.
Scott Miller, from Chevy Chase, is a runner who uses the Crescent Trail and the tunnel. He did not know about the attacks.
“I prefer not to run in the dark here, but I’m perfectly fine with running in the daylight,” he says.
Paige Miller lives in Virginia but works in the Bethesda area. She walks though the tunnel daily to get to her gym. She didn’t know about the attacks either.
“It’s the first I heard of it,” she says. “It doesn’t exactly make me conformable.”