Office of Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr.

April 23, 2002 Media Inquiries: Sean Caine 410-576-6357


Kenneth Eugene Snowden, 47, of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, was convicted Monday of dumping tires for commercial purposes. Snowden was sentenced to three years in prison with all but six months suspended. He will then be placed on supervised probation for three years. Snowden entered a guilty plea before Prince George's County Circuit Court Judge Frank M. Kratovil.

Snowden was found with a truck full of scrap tires at a large illegal dump site on private property near Church Road in Mitchellville, Maryland. Near the truck were piles of scrap tires that had been dumped in the area. Investigators with the Environmental Crimes Unit were able to trace many of the dumped tires to Snowden through paper tags used by the tire industry to track tires that are shipped to retreading companies. The tire stores in question had been paying Snowden to properly dispose of the tires. At the time, Snowden was licensed by the State of Maryland to haul scrap tires.

By law, scrap tires must be collected and only disposed of at licensed facilities, which charge a fee for the disposal of the tires. Those who haul scrap tires must also be licensed by the State. Tire stores and other commercial businesses that accumulate scrap tires must keep records showing where their scrap tires were shipped, the quantity of tires and the identity of the hauler. Those seeking to avoid paying for proper disposal frequently dump scrap tires on public and private property. Dumped tires pose a health hazard because they are flammable and harbor mosquitoes. The Attorney General continues to attack this problem through his joint initiative with local, state and federal agencies "Operation Tire Track."

"Illegally dumped tires is not only damaging to our environment, but it also places the burden and expense of clean-up on government agencies and law-abiding property owners," Attorney General Curran said.