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Early Voting In Maryland Begins

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) -- Gov. Martin O'Malley is hoping early voting in Maryland for the first time will create higher voter turnout.

O'Malley, a Democrat, was the 222nd voter who cast a ballot in the primary at the Public Safety Training Facility in Baltimore on Friday afternoon, the first day of early voting in Maryland.

Former Gov. Robert Ehrlich, O'Malley's likely opponent in November, also is encouraging people to vote early, even though he's been critical of early voting and vetoed legislation to create it when he was governor.

Ehrlich says it's now the law in the state and he's going to live with it and, it is hoped, take advantage of it. Andy Barth, an Ehrlich campaign spokesman, says Ehrlich is expected to take part in early voting next week.

Police believe someone in the area knows the suspect.

Germantown, Md. (WUSA) -- Montgomery County Police were looking for leads Tuesday evening for a rapist who may be linked to two attacks on elderly women in Germantown.

Karen Valloch, a Germantown resident says that with one brutal act of violence her sense of security is gone..."I've lived here 10 years, I'm single, I deliberately moved into a second floor, just to be on the safe side. And I've never known anything happening in this area....every night now I check my doors and everything two or three times. I keep my blinds closed all day. I keep my blinds on my balcony closed. And I'm not used to living that way. I don't like to do that."

At sunset, Montgomery County Police officers blanketed the neighborhood, trying to unearth clues that could lead to the man who robbed these residents of their peace of mind.

The suspect is described as a black male, 17 to 25 years old, 5-7 to 5-10, with a slim build and no facial hair.

Maryland schools battle with limited funding and space as enrollment grows by Michael Bimbaum, WAPO

Michael Bimbaum for the Washington Post reports: More than 200,000 Maryland students streamed back to crowded classrooms Monday as school systems dealt with growth but little money to hire more teachers.

In Montgomery County, the state's largest school system, parents said they were anxious about increased class sizes but sanguine about the schools' future under a successor to Superintendent Jerry D. Weast, who is retiring in June. Enrollment swelled by 2,200 students -- 1.5 percent -- this year, hundreds more than forecast. Howard and Charles counties also returned to school Monday.

Sick Fox Roaming A Germantown Neighborhood

GERMANTOWN, Md. (wusa) -- They call it "The Thing", an animal believed to be a fox nesting inside a storm drain on the corner of Ridgecrest Drive and Stoney Bottom Road.

"He had patches of hair missing and now he's completely bald, which mainly means he's got mange," Monica Hill explained.

Tim Poland told us, "it doesn't look well."

The animal appears sick and poses a threat to people but calling for help has not been easy.

Christine Opdenaker says, she called numerous county agencies to take care of the animal but she tells 9 News Now, nobody took responsibility.

"Everybody seems to be passing the buck, you call animal control, and they say it's not their problem, you call the department of transportation, they say it's not their problem, you call the humane society, it's not their problem," Opdenaker said. 

Where Are Montgomery County's New Speed Cameras?

MONTGOMERY COUNTY (WUSA)  Montgomery County announced 25 new locations for speed enforcement.   All but one of the following locations will be enforced using six mobile speed vans.  Fixed cameras will be installed at the New Hampshire Avenue location.

Deployment begins August 30th.  Enforcement will be rotated among the sites periodically.

Fingerprint Scanners Coming To Montgomery Rec Centers

ROCKVILLE, Md. (AP) -- Montgomery County residents will soon be required to scan their fingers to enter recreation centers.

Officials say switching from plastic passes to finger scanners will save the recreation department $50,000 annually. The scanners will be put into use this fall at three centers, and will be expanded to all the county's centers next year.

Privacy advocates say the measure is intrusive and unnecessary. Marc Rotenberg, executive director of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, says it isn't appropriate for a community pool.

2 Germantown women assaulted