Today in Maryland

Former Md. House Speaker R. Clayton Mitchell dead at 83

ANNAPOLIS (AP) — Former Maryland House Speaker R. Clayton Mitchell has died.

Mitchell's family announced his death on Friday. He was 83. The family says he died Thursday.

Mitchell was a Democrat who served in the Maryland House of Delegates for 23 years. He was elected speaker by his House colleagues in 1987, and he served in the leadership role until he retired in 1992.

He was a native of Chestertown, Maryland, on the Eastern Shore. He began his political career as a Kent County commissioner in 1966.

He was elected to the Maryland House after serving one term as county commissioner. He represented Caroline, Cecil, Kent, Queen Anne's and Talbot counties.

Last year, Gov. Larry Hogan named the U.S. 50 bridge over the Kent Narrows after Mitchell.The viewing will be from 1 to 4 p.m. and 5 to 7 p.m. at the Fellows Family Funeral Home, 370 Cypress Avenue in Millington, Maryland on Thursday, June 20, 2019. Funeral services will be held on Friday, June 21, 2019 beginning at the Fellows Family Funeral Home at 11 a.m. with internment subsequently at the Shrewsbury Church in Kennedyville, Maryland.The viewing will be from 1 to 4 p.m. and 5 to 7 p.m. at the Fellows Family Funeral Home, 370 Cypress Avenue in Millington, Maryland on Thursday, June 20, 2019. Funeral services will be held on Friday, June 21, 2019 beginning at the Fellows Family Funeral Home at 11 a.m. with internment subsequently at the Shrewsbury Church in Kennedyville, Maryland.ll, Sr. and Mildred (née Rhodes) Mitchell.

The viewing will be from 1 to 4 p.m. and 5 to 7 p.m. at the Fellows Family Funeral Home, 370 Cypress Avenue in Millington, Maryland on Thursday, June 20, 2019. Funeral services will be held on Friday, June 21, 2019 beginning at the Fellows Family Funeral Home at 11 a.m. with internment subsequently at the Shrewsbury Church in Kennedyville, Maryland.

In lieu of flowers, our family asks that a memorial donation be made in Mr. Mitchell's name to Compass Regional Hospice, 160 Coursevall Drive, Centreville, MD 21617.

Maryland official says Baltimore resisted help after hack

BALTIMORE (AP) — A Maryland information technology official says Baltimore leaders resisted accepting help from the state for about a week after the city's computer servers were hacked.

The Baltimore Sun reports it obtained a transcript from a May 22 cybersecurity meeting where Maryland Chief Information Security Officer John Evans said there wasn't a "trusted relationship" between city and state officials before the ransomware attack. He says that kept the state from solving problems faster. The hack continues to cripple several city payment functions.

Last week, Baltimore IT Director Frank Johnson apologized to the city council for his initial response to the hack.

City computer servers were hit by the ransomware attack May 7. City officials have refused a demand to pay the equivalent of $76,000 in bitcoin in response to the attack.

Information from: The Baltimore Sun, http://www.baltimoresun.com

Former state senator resigns from university medical board

BALTIMORE (AP) — A former Maryland state senator has resigned from the University of Maryland Medical System board of directors, which has been under scrutiny after a self-dealing contract scandal.

Francis Kelly resigned in a letter Friday. His resignation comes just days after he was invited to rejoin the board after a voluntary leave of absence.

An independent report released this week noted that Kelly's company provided services to the board, earning more than $100,000 a year from fiscal years 2011 to 2018. The report says while more could have been done to ensure the system received fair market value for the company's services, an effort was made to ensure the price paid was fair in 2012.

Kelly also says he and his sons won't return to various UMMS-affiliated boards.

IBM, Curam, agree to settlement on Maryland health exchange

BALTIMORE (AP) — Federal and state officials say IBM and Curam Software have agreed to a $14.8 million settlement over allegations they made misrepresentations to the state of Maryland relating to developing the state's health exchange website, which was plagued with problems when it launched in 2013.

Maryland U.S. Attorney Robert Hur and Maryland Attorney Brian Frosh made the announcement Friday in a settlement of allegations under the federal False Claims Act.

Authorities say the case related to the contract award process for developing the website.

The U.S. attorney's office says the settlement is not an admission of liability by IBM or a concession by the federal government that its claims were not well founded. It will be paid to the U.S. and the state.

Maryland's share of the settlement is $2.8 million.

Jury acquits former Maryland basketball player of rape

UPPER MARLBORO (AP) — A jury has acquitted a former University of Maryland basketball player who was accused of having sex with a drunk woman without her consent.

Jurors found 25-year-old Damonte Dodd not guilty of raping or assaulting an 18-year-old woman he met at a College Park bar on Halloween night in 2017.

The Washington post reports prosecutors said the victim had been vomiting and stumbling that night, signs she was intoxicated and not able to give consent for sex.

Dodd testified that she demonstrated interest and suggested they go to his apartment. The woman said she told him she was "too drunk" and didn't want to have sex. Dodd said she never explicitly said "no."

Dodd graduated from the University of Maryland in 2017 and went on to play professionally in Poland.

Hoax "mayday" distress caller vexes Coast Guard in Maryland

OCEAN CITY (AP) — Maryland Coast Guard officials want the public's help in identifying someone they say has been making a "steady stream" of fake distress calls for months.

The Coast Guard released audio of the calls Thursday, hoping someone will recognize the voice. The agency says the calls began streaming in near Ocean City in March on a VHF marine radio channel designated for emergencies. News outlets report the caller is recorded saying they are "going down with the ship" and "mayday, mayday, mayday," along with profanities.

The Coast Guard says it believes the same person is making all these "suspected" hoax calls.

Coast Guard investigators say they have lost time and resources responding. Penalties for false calls can include up to 10 years in prison and $250,000 in fines.

Baltimore art museum adds over 70 works to its collection

BALTIMORE (AP) — The Baltimore Museum of Art has so far this year added more than 70 contemporary and historic artworks to its broad collection.

BMA director Christopher Bedford said in a Thursday statement that the new acquisitions highlight the curatorial team's vision in forging connections "across artists and movements within the museum's collection."

Additions include 19th century prints by Italian art nouveau illustrator Manuel Orazi, a film by Cuban American artist Ana Mendieta and a painting by contemporary American artist Mary Lovelace O'Neal.

Various new pieces were purchased with proceeds from last year's auction of seven works by 20th century artists, including Andy Warhol, to help diversify and contemporize its collection. Some historic additions were acquired as gifts.

The BMA has nearly 100,000 pieces, including the world's largest holding of Henri Matisse's creations.

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