MCP Santa Ready to Ride into Town on Harley to Benefit The Children’s Inn at NIH

On Wednesday, December 13, Santa will trade in his sleigh to ride a Harley-Davidson motorcycle during the Police Department’s annual Santa Ride that benefits The Children’s Inn at NIH.  The Department invites residents to stop at any of the predetermined locations to visit with Santa and his motor officer elves.


Santa and his elves (aka: motor officers) will travel throughout the county on their motorcycles as they make their way to bring gifts and donations from local businesses and organizations to the children and families at The Children’s Inn at NIH (National Institutes of Health).  While at the Inn, officers will help the children choose presents for their family members at a gift shop.

“The Children’s Inn at NIH is a residential “Place Like Home’’ for families with children participating in leading-edge research studies at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland. The NIH Clinical Center is the nation’s premier biomedical research hospital, providing an opportunity for our residents to be partners in advancing medical discoveries and improving the health of people all over the world. While the NIH takes care of the child’s medical needs, The Inn tends to the child’s heart, soul and spirit.” – The Children’s Inn at NIH


WHEN: Wednesday, December 13, 2017



Starting Location
5th District (Germantown) Station 20000 Aircraft Drive, Germantown 10:00 a.m.








 Arrival Time

Upcounty Regional Services Center 12900 Middlebrook Road, Germantown 10:05 a.m.
Kentlands Market Square By Starbucks,121 Market Street, Kentlands 10:45 a.m.
Public Safety Headquarters 100 Edison Park Drive, Gaithersburg 11:15 a.m.
Fair Hill Plaza – Olney Town Center 18169 Town Center Drive, Olney 2:30 p.m.
Ellsworth Drive near Starbucks 915 Ellsworth Drive, Silver Spring 3:10 p.m.
Veteran’s Park Intersection of Woodmont and Norfolk Avenues 3:50 p.m.
The Children’s Inn at NIH Private event – Patients only 4:30 p.m.

*Santa will do his very best to stay on schedule but please note that all times are approximate.  Please follow the Department on Twitter @mcpnews during the Santa Ride for the most up-to-the-minute information.

In the past, residents have inquired why the Santa Ride cannot begin at night so that school children may have a better opportunity to see Santa.  Please know that the ultimate goal of this ride is meet with the families of NIH, so we need to make sure that we arrive at the Inn at a reasonable hour and that Santa has time to talk with all of the children.  We appreciate your understanding.


To Whom It May Concern:

The Montgomery County Police Department, in association with other law enforcement offices within the county have become partners in the annual “Santa’s Escort Ride” to benefit The Children’s Inn at NIH. The procession of over 30 uniformed policemen led by Santa on a Harley has become a highlight of the holiday season for the last several years. The charity ride has even captured the attention of many media outlets.

The Children’s Inn is a private, nonprofit, family-centered residence for pediatric outpatients at the National Institutes of Health.  Its purpose is to keep children together with their families during serious illness, reduce their stress and facilitate the healing process through mutual support. In fiscal year 2017, more than 1,700 families came from 50 states and 94 countries to stay at The Inn. Families do not pay to stay at the Inn; we rely solely on private contributions to sustain our operations.

We are seeking financial donations from local organizations and businesses. All donations raised from this event will help support operational expenses as well as programs for the entire family. These services include recreational, therapeutic, wellness, educational, and spiritual programming. Each one designed to build community and wellbeing among residents and to provide children and families a natural opportunity to meet and make friends with others going through similar experiences.

We are hoping you will be able to donate to this charity event. Your charitable, tax-deductible donation will help The Children’s Inn continue to provide much needed services to seriously ill children and their families. To provide a financial donation on-line, please visit our website at, and enter your information. You may also mail your donation to The Children’s Inn at NIH, Attn: Donation Department in c/o Santa Police Ride, 7 West Drive, Bethesda, MD  20814.

If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact me at or by phone at 301-451-9454.  Thank you in advance for considering our request.

With gratitude,

Laura King

Sr. Director of Volunteers and Community Outreach





FOLLOW ALONG ON FACEBOOK AND TWITTER: Virtual “Santa Ride” – #MCPSantaRide #MotorSanta

Montgomery County Police Department (Facebook)

@mcpnews on Twitter

  • If you are unable to stop and see Santa and his elves along the Santa Ride route, MCP invites you to join us on a virtual ride-along with Santa as MCP officers will post updates to our social media (Facebook and Twitter) as the Santa Ride progresses through the County. #MCPSantaRide #MotorSanta
  • If you are able to join us along the way, please tag/share your social media photos.

Santa arrives at The Children’s Inn (2016)


Aspen Hill Area Fatal Crash Investigated

Update (12/6/17, 9:00 am): The driver of the Nissan is identified as Mario Adalberto Montoya Flores, age 28, of N Summit Avenue in Gaithersburg.

Detectives from the Montgomery County Police – Collision Reconstruction Unit (CRU) are investigating a fatal traffic collision that occurred early this morning on Georgia Avenue, south of Aspen Hill Road. 

At approximately 1:49 a.m., on Wednesday, December 6 officers from the 4th District, along with Fire and Rescue personnel responded to Georgia Avenue at Hewitt Avenue for the report of a serious personal injury collision.  First responders located two pickup trucks that had been involved in a collision at that location.  Preliminary investigation has revealed that an adult male driver of a 2007 Nissan Frontier was traveling northbound on Georgia Avenue when for reasons still under investigation, struck a 2017 Toyota Tacoma, operated by another adult male, who was attempting to turn left from westbound Hewitt Avenue onto southbound Georgia Avenue.  Both drivers were injured and transported to Suburban Hospital. 

The driver of the Nissan succumbed to his injuries at the hospital.  The driver of the Toyota sustained non-life-threatening injuries and received treatment at the hospital.  The driver of the Toyota is being identified as Israel A. Vasquez Bonilla, 50 years old, of the 3400 block of Hewitt Avenue.  The identity of the driver of the Nissan will be released once family has been notified. 

The investigation of this collision is ongoing.  Anyone with information regarding this crash is asked to contact the Collision Reconstruction Unit at 240.773.6620.  Callers may remain anonymous.



Update: Suspect Arrested for Discharging Firearm Toward a Redland Area Church – Tipster Helped Close This Case

Peter Kevin Banfield

Detectives from the Montgomery County Police Department – 6th District Investigative Section have charged Peter Kevin Banfield, age 35, of the 1100 block of Southern Night Lane in Gaithersburg, with reckless endangerment and destruction of property for discharging a firearm which caused damage to a church on two occasions.

On the evening of Wednesday, November 15, a parishioner of the New Life Seventh Day Adventist Church located at 7401 Muncaster Mill Road called police after he was attending a service at the church and noticed a bullet hole in a window frame near the front entrance.  Police responded and a bullet fragment was recovered from the frame.  Church representatives told police they were unsure of when the shots were fired.

On Thursday, November 16 at approximately 11:13 p.m., 6th District officers responded to the area of the church for the report of sounds of multiple gunshots.  First responders noticed that the church had sustained damage from apparent gunfire and officers recovered bullet fragments at the scene.  Officers also located and recovered multiple shell casings on Muncaster Mill Road near the church.

On November 17, detectives released information to the media and public and asked for help in identifying a suspect.  Investigators received a tip which led to the identification of Banfield as the suspect.

On November 29, detectives obtained a Montgomery County Search and Seizure warrant for Banfield’s residence.  During the search, investigators recovered a handgun and ammunition in Banfield’s bedroom.

A forensics analysis was conducted on the shell casings recovered from the scene of the firearm discharges at the church and the handgun and ammunition recovered during the search warrant.  The forensic analysis indicated that the handgun recovered during the search was the same weapon that was used during the firearm discharges at the church.

Detectives obtained an arrest warrant for Banfield charging him with reckless endangerment, destruction of religious property, destruction of property over $1,000, and discharging a firearm in an urban area.  On December 5, Banfield was arrested in Rockville on the strength of the arrest warrant.  Bond information for Banfield is not yet available.





Officer-Involved Shooting Investigation Update

Detectives with the Major Crimes Division have completed their investigation of an officer-involved shooting that occurred on Sunday, November 5 at the Stoneymill Square shopping center located in the 12200 block of Veirs Mill Road (at the corner of Veirs Mill Road and Randolph Road).

Information gathered by Major Crimes detectives during this investigation, to include the recent interview of the adult male who was shot by Officer Archer, has been provided to the Howard County State’s Attorney’s Office for review.  (An established agreement between the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office and the Howard County State’s Attorney’s Office stipulates that when an officer-involved shooting involving injury or death occurs in one county, the other county’s State’s Attorney’s Office will review the event).  The Howard County State’s Attorney’s Office will determine if the Montgomery County police officer acted within the confines of the law or if this investigation will be brought before a Montgomery County grand jury.

Officer Todd Archer, per department protocol, remains on paid administrative leave during this investigation.

As stated above, the adult male has been interviewed by detectives as part of this investigation.  Major Crimes detectives have also completed the following (previously released):

  • Collected Officer Archer’s Department issued body-worn camera and reviewed that video.
  • Collected Officer Archer’s service weapon and duty belt for preservation and analysis.
  • Interviewed the person who called 911 (who stated that he was in his vehicle and an unknown SUV was ramming his vehicle).
  • Obtained statements and body-worn camera video from officers who arrived at the scene following the shooting.
  • Canvassed the area for additional witnesses and surveillance video.  Investigators obtained long-range video of the event that was captured on a business’ surveillance system.
  • Photographed the scene.
  • Towed the Cadillac Escalade, processed it for evidence, and returned it to the family.
  • Interviewed the family of the male who was shot.

Investigation by Montgomery County Police Department – Major Crimes detectives has determined that on Sunday, November 5 at approximately 8:20 p.m., the Emergency Communications Center (911) received a call for an assault in progress at the shopping center. The caller stated that he was in his vehicle and an unknown SUV was ramming his vehicle.

Officer Todd Archer was the first officer to arrive at the call for service.  He approached the SUV and discharged his firearm one time.  The 52-year-old male driver of a 2003 Cadillac Escalade (SUV) was shot.  Additional officers arrived at the scene after the officer discharged his weapon.  Officers began life-saving measures and Fire & Rescue services were called.  The driver of the Escalade was transported to a local hospital with serious, non-life-threatening injuries; he has since been released.


Previous Releases:

MCP Investigates Officer-Involved Shooting

Update: Detectives Continue to Investigate Officer-Involved Shooting; Identity of Officer Released

Update to Officer-Involved Shooting Investigation


Detectives Investigate Pedestrian Collision on Georgia Avenue at International Drive

Detectives from the Montgomery County Police Department – Collision Reconstruction Unit (CRU) are investigating a serious collision involving a pedestrian that occurred this afternoon in the 15100 block of Georgia Avenue at International Drive.

On Monday, December 4 at approximately 3:51 p.m., 4th District officers and Fire and Rescue personnel responded to Georgia Avenue at International Drive for the report of a pedestrian- involved collision.

Preliminary investigation has revealed that a 2015 Honda Crosstour, driven by Diriba Worku Yadessa, age 50, of the 2600 block of Winter Morning Way in Olney, was traveling south on Georgia Avenue approaching International Drive.  A pedestrian, identified as Zinash Gedamu, age 68, of the 15000 block of Georgia Avenue, was crossing Georgia Avenue at International Drive an eastern direction (toward the entrance to Leisure World) when for reasons still under investigation, she was struck by the Crosstour.

Gedamu was transported to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries.

Anyone with information regarding this collision is asked to contact the Collision Reconstruction Unit at 240-773-6620.