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Five displaced after townhouse fire in Gaithersburg


GAITHERSBURG, Md. (WUSA 9) -- Five adults and several pets have been displaced after a townhouse fire in Gaithersburg Saturday, fire officials said.

At approximately 11:30 a.m., fire officials say firefighters responded to a townhouse on the 9200 block of Hummingbird Terrace in Gaithersburg for the report of a fire.

Upon arrival, firefighters encountered heavy fire in the first and second floors of the house. Fire officials say it took 75 firefighters 30 minutes to extinguish the fire. One firefighter suffered minor lacerations to one hand, fire officials said.

The only occupant of the home was able to get out safely, but fire officials said several pets were unaccounted for. Firefighters were able to rescue and resuscitate one cat, fire officials said.

METRO SCHOOL of the ARTS ACADEMY AUDITIONS, SUN., MAR. 1; for 2015-2016 School Year

METRO SCHOOL of the ARTS ACADEMY AUDITIONS, SUN., MAR. 1; for 2015-2016 School Year

Students interested in attending the Metropolitan School of the Arts (MSA) of Alexandria and Lorton, Va. can audition on Sun., Mar. 1 at MSA Lorton Campus at 9601 Ox Road. Auditions are required as part of the 2015-2016 academy registration. The MSA Academy audition is for performing arts students from 6th grade to 12th grade. Students should call 703-339-0444 ext.3 or visit www.metropolitanarts.org to register for an audition time. 

The audition process will give prospective students an opportunity to demonstrate his or her skills in dance, music and theater for the chairs of the respective arts departments.  Applicants must attend a live audition if they live within three geographical states of MSA.  Prospective students living beyond the three-state radius may submit a DVD audition. 

Missing Gaithersburg woman found in police custody


GAITHERSBURG, Md. (WUSA9) -- A Maryland woman who was reported missing was found in custody Thursday after a press conference was held to bring attention to her case.

Elizabeth "Betty" Jean Queen, age 69, of Gaithersburg had last been seen on December 29th, and was reported missing on January 9th.

On Thursday, Queen's sister spoke at a press conference, hoping to bring attention to her sister's case.

A correctional officer recognized Queen a someone who had been processed and contacted police.

Further investigation revealed that Queen, a diagnosed schizophrenic was arrested and booked for disorderly conduct and assaulting a police officer in Silver Spring on December 30th, just one day after the last time she was seen.

Police identify pedestrian struck by train in Gaithersburg


GAITHERSBURG, Md. (WUSA9) -- A pedestrian was struck and killed by a train Monday afternoon in Gaithersburg, authorities said.

William Alexander Buendia Rodriguez, 20, of Germantown was struck and killed by a train on the tracks located in the area of the Germantown MARC station on 19330 Mateny Hill Road at approximately 1:37 p.m., police said.

Police say Rodriguez had been in the area of the tracks when he was struck by a train and succumbed to his injuries on the scene.

The reasoning for Rodriguez being in the area of the tracks is still being investigated and police say no foul play is suspected.

Residents escape Gaithersburg fire, Christmas gifts saved


GAITHERSBURG, Md. (WUSA9) -- A fire in a Montgomery County townhouse caused moderate damage, but all the occupants of the home escaped and firefighters were able to salvage the family's Christmas gifts.

It happened around 5 p.m. on Anna Court in Gaithersburg, according to Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services spokesperson Pete Piringer.

Sixty-five firefighters arrived to battle the fire, which originated in a second-floor bedroom in the three-story home. The fire was contained to the single home, but extended from the bedroom into the hallway and attic.

Three adults and five children were displaced as a result. Firefighters quickly covered the family's Christmas tree and gifts, possibly salvaging the holiday.

2 more families of Gaithersburg plane crash need help


GAITHERSBURG, Md. (WUSA9) -- In addition to the Gemmell's house, the plane that crashed in Gaithersburg hit two other houses. Those families are also facing a disaster. Their homes are severely damaged and they will be out of them for months.

A fundraiser is scheduled for the families at the Chick-fil-A at Germantown Town Center on December 22nd. A portion of all sales will be donated to all three families, the business said.

Their neighbors have also set up a GoFundMe page and start collecting gift cards to help them. They're looking for gift cards from Target, Walmart and local restaurants.

Man arrested in Gaithersburg Hilton Hotel armed robbery


GAITHERSBURG, Md. (WUSA9) -- Gaithersburg Police arrested a 22-year-old man in connection with an armed robbery that happened on December 5, at the Gaithersburg Hilton Hotel, police said.

Police arrested John Fitzgerald Tomlinson of Silver Spring, Md.on Thursday for armed robbery and related charges, according to authorities. Police found a black semi-automatic handgun during an executed search and seizure warrant for Tomlinson. He is being held at the Montgomery County Detention Center.

Shots were fired on December 5, at the Gaithersburg Hilton Hotel located at 620 Perry Parkway, police said. Investigation shows that a woman got into an argument with a man. The man then pulled out an unknown caliber handgun and demanded cash from the victim. The victim discharged the firearm and a fight started after she refused to give him money.

The woman had non-life threatening injuries from the incident.