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Police seek man charged in assault of Thurmont teen

Ingrid Mezo

(6/22) A Thurmont man has been arrested and charged with assaulting a 15-year-old girl, and police want to question him about another incident involving a 5-year-old boy.

Michael Lee Hoffman, 25, faces a second second-degree assault charge for an incident involving the boy, Thurmont Police Chief Greg Eyler said.

Hoffman was arrested and charged June 7, and was taken to the Frederick County Adult Detention Center, Eyler said. A spokesman with Frederick County Detention Center Holding Unit said information about when Hoffman was released is confidential.

‘‘He posted a $3,000 bond," said the spokesman, who identified himself as Cpl. Cronise.

Thurmont police have not charged Hoffman in the case involving the 5-year-old boy because they don’t know where he is. Hoffman apparently has checked himself into a hospital, Eyler said, but why he entered the hospital and where it is are unknown.

‘‘We do have the charging documents, but have not served them yet because he’s in the hospital somewhere," he said.

In the case of the 15-year-old girl, Eyler said she went for a run on the afternoon of June 7 when a man pushing a lawn mower down the road approached her.

‘‘He approached the juvenile and said, ‘This is good exercise,’" Eyler said.

The girl continued on her way, not saying anything to the man. He extended his hand to grab her, Eyler said, but she pulled back, at which time he grabbed her by her left wrist and forcibly pulled her toward his body. She broke away without injury, ran home and called the police, he said.

A neighbor told police someone ran into a house on Catoctin Highlands Circle, and police later identified that person as Hoffman.

Hoffman is also wanted in connection with a June 5 incident in Thurmont, Eyler said.

According to a report from the Thurmont Police Department, officers responded at 10:50 a.m., June 5, to a report that a 5-year-old boy was approached at a bus stop at Emmitsburg Road and Catoctin Highlands Circle by a man wearing a white T-shirt and cut-off blue jeans.

The man grabbed the boy’s shoulder and asked, ‘‘Where do you live?" The boy escaped from the man’s grasp and ran home.

The man was described as thin, white, about 5 feet, 10 inches tall. He was standing by a tree near the bus stop with his car running when he approached the boy.

Eyler said Hoffman matched the description, and the 5-year-old victim picked him out of a line-up. Police have additional evidence, he said, but he could not say what that evidence is.

The boy said the man had a sword, about 2 feet long, hanging on his side.

Thurmont police canvassed the area, but were not able to find the man or his car.

A trial date has been set for Aug. 22 in the June 7 incident, according to Frederick County District Court records.

The Thurmont Police Department is asking anyone with information about Hoffman’s whereabouts to call 301-271-0905. Officer Seth Ambrose is handling the investigation.

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