April 20, 2004
COUNTY MAN CONVICTED OF TIRE DUMPING
Attorney General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that Henry
Purnell Guercio, Jr., 43, of the 1700 block of Campbell Road
in Forest Hill, Maryland was convicted of illegally disposing
of scrap tires for monetary gain. The tire dumping occurred between
August 15th and December 1st of 2002 on a farm located at 309-311
West Wheel Road in the Bel Air area of Harford County, Maryland.
convicted for disposing of approximately 1,800 tires on the farm
that he was renting at the time. Guercio convinced
a licensed tire hauler to delivery scrap tires to the farm by falsely
maintaining that he was a licensed landscaper involving in the
building of playgrounds made from shredded tires. Guercio charged
the legitimate tire hauler money for each tire left at the farm.
Guercio then abandoned the tires on the farm. Investigators from
the Attorney General’s Environmental Crimes Unit were able
to trace the scrap tires back to two tire stores in Bel Air and
ultimately to Guercio who no longer lived on the farm when the
tire dump was discovered.
“ Tires are a blight on many communities around our State.
In addition to being unsightly they pose public safety risks that
the dumping of other materials does not. Among other problems,
tires are an ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes, particularly
those that carry the West Nile virus. The farm where this dump
occurred is outside of Bel Air, but surrounded by residential developments
in a quickly growing part of Harford County. We need to ensure
that tires are handled lawfully and our citizens are not unnecessarily
exposed to the detrimental effects of tire dumping, ” said
Attorney General Curran.
Maryland requires that tire haulers and tire disposal facilities
be licensed to assist in making sure that the millions of scrap
tires generated each year in Maryland are disposed of in a safe
and appropriate manner. Last year, the Maryland Department of the
Environment spent over $2.6 million cleaning up illegal tire dumps.
In this case, the tire hauler that Guercio duped into providing
the tires cleaned up the property when the dump was discovered
Guercio entered a guilty plea in front of the Honorable William
O. Carr of the Circuit Court for Harford County. Judge Carr sentenced
the defendant to two years in state prison and suspended the sentence
in favor of two years of supervised probation. Guercio was ordered
to perform seventy-five hours of community work service and pay
$480 in court costs. The Court imposed and suspended a $5,000 fine