Saturday, September 12, 2009

Boo frickin hoo

Alleged mortgage-buyback fraudster Michael K. Lewis left people homeless, but his sentence is 78 months in the federal big house (serving time in a Dubyaville down by the river is apparently not an option.) Sobbed Lewis, "I was focused on teaching people how to bring in more money." More details from the DOJ.

Surprise Guilty Plea for Murder of Deron Hope, 16

An exceptionally verbose and compelling PR from the SAO:
Baltimore, MD – September 11, 2009 – The murder trial of William Key, AKA Anthony Banks, 21, of the 300 block of E. Lafayette Avenue ended in a hung jury Thursday following 3 days of deliberations and a 5 day trial. Then suddenly, mid-afternoon yesterday, Key pled guilty before the Honorable Timothy J. Doory. After the jury’s inability to reach a unanimous decision by one vote, based on what jurors reported was a public defender seated on the jury and the lone holdout juror, Key entered a guilty plea to the second degree murder of Deron Hope and use of a handgun in a crime of violence. Judge Doory sentenced Key to 40 years in prison, 30 years for the second degree murder to be served consecutive to a 10 year sentence for the use of a handgun in a crime of violence. Prosecutor Terry Shaffer read a poignant note of remembrance written by Hope’s mother as part of her victim impact statement, as she sobbed quietly on a courtroom bench, unable to speak in court.

A co-defendant, Kenneth Robbins, pled guilty May 13, 2009 to second-degree murder and is pending sentencing scheduled November 23, 2009 before the Honorable Martin Welch, Room 228 Courthouse East. During court proceedings in May, Key was held in contempt for assaulting Robbins while they sat side by side awaiting the court proceedings.

Through evidence and witnesses, the State showed that Key was a member of the Black Guerilla [sic] Family (BGF) gang and that he had been trying to recruit Kenny Robbins into the gang. Kenny was reluctant because he knew he would have to take a “beat down”, subjecting himself to a brutal gang beating, so Key told Kenny there were other ways to achieve status in the BGF gang, including murder. Deron Hope was not known to either defendant, and his murder was a random act of violence. The Baltimore City Grand Jury indicted Keys and Robbins on November 28, 2007 for first-degree murder and handgun counts.

Facts and evidence presented during opening statements, during the trial and subsequent plea, showed that at the time of the murder on October 13, 2007, Deron Hope was a rising football star who was being recruited by Mount St. Joseph’s High School. He did not know the defendants, and was shot at point blank range as part of a Black Guerrilla Family gang recruitment initiation for a new gang member, while spending the day with friends. At the time of the murder defendant Key was under a court commitment order to the Department of Juvenile Services and living with his grandmother in the Latrobe community.

On October 13, 2007, Deron spent the day hanging out with two girls in the 1700 block of Latrobe Street. Deron Hope, aka BJ, was a junior student with outstanding football talent, a tight end and running back, with offers from Mount St. Joseph High School. Around midnight, when sitting on steps outside with friends, 2 friends got up to go into the house to get shoes and money, when shots were fired. They ran back to look out the door and saw William Key and Kenneth Robbins, a co-defendant, running up Latrobe Street. Key appeared to be tucking something into his pocket. During testimony they recalled that earlier that evening they noticed the two at another house in the 1700 block of Latrobe Street and that at some point they left and eventually returned.

William Key lived with his grandmother at 326 E. Lafayette, about 300 feet from where the body of Deron Hope was found. A neighbor of Key testified that as he was getting ready for bed around midnight and heard someone jumping over his fence. The next morning, before leaving for work, the neighbor found two guns in the back yard. The neighbor placed the guns in a box, took them into the house, and called the police.

The two guns recovered were a .38 caliber revolver, and a .38 caliber bullet was recovered from below the victim’s right eye. A revolver does not eject a casing. There were 4 live bullets in the .38 and one spent casing. Key’s DNA was found on the handle of the gun. The DNA from the trigger was not conclusive, but was consistent with Key’s DNA. The second gun was a .22 caliber semi automatic that ejects a cartridge. A .22 caliber casing was recovered from the scene with the same characteristics as the gun found in the neighbor’s yard and the second bullet recovered from the victim’s skull was consistent with this gun.

Deron was shot twice, once by each gun. He was shot in the head at point blank range, in the face and through his earlobe. The State was able to confirm this through the testimony of the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner and co-defendant Kenny Robbins. Robbins lived with his Aunt at in the 200 block of E. Lafayette. He had watched the police recover the guns and knew it was just a matter of time [ED: how does the SAO know what he knew?] before he was implicated. When police came he was mirandized, waived his rights and told police what had happened.

Assistant State’s Attorney Theresa Shaffer of the Homicide Division prosecuted this case.


View Larger Map
Four more homicides added to the Sun map:
Trenton Marshall, 20, 2300 E Northern Parkway, shot to death while on "a red bicycle near a bus stop on Northern Parkway" "without warning"

View Larger Map
Shelton Elliott, 43, 500 N Carey St. Sept. 9, shooting

View Larger Map
Michael Chase, 47, 601 E Fayette St. (!! at/in/near the police station? is that right?) Sept 9, shooting

View Larger Map
Charles Mack, 47, 2700 Ashland Ave, Sept. 8, blunt force trauma

Friday, September 11, 2009

Jessamy on ACORN

Press release sent out about an hour ago:
Baltimore, MD – September 11, 2009 – We have received inquiries from citizens and the media asking whether the Baltimore City State’s Attorneys Office would initiate a criminal investigation for acts allegedly committed at ACORN offices located in Baltimore. The only information received in reference to this alleged criminal behavior was a YouTube video. Upon review by this office, the video appears to be incomplete. In addition, the audio portion could possibly have been obtained in violation of Maryland Law, Annotated Code of Maryland Courts and Judicial Proceedings Article §10-402, which requires two party consent.

If it is determined that the audio portion now being heard on YouTube was illegally obtained, it is also illegal under Maryland Law to willfully use or willfully disclose the content of said audio. The penalty for the unlawful interception, disclosure or use of it is a felony punishable up to 5 years.
In case you're one of the five people who hasn't heard about this story, link to CNN coverage here. Latest twist, there's a second tape from the DC office, with some intriguing insights on how to set up a legal "lady of the night marketeer" consultancy.
It's kind of sweet, how helpful everyone is!
Correction: TDR says feds are not seeking the death penalty for Brian Rose.

This just in: Baltimore's courthouses= dangerous heck-holes

FHBIII sensibly nixes the Honey-Hole cam

Thursday, September 10, 2009

triple shooting & fatality

View Larger Map
Three adult males shot @ 9 pm, one has died, 500 Radnor Ave

Today is the day when the hippies of MD cry

Geroge Kraft gets 13 years for selling magic mushrooms. A good article on him in the City Paper from last November.

Shootings, Stabbings and Firebombings, Oh my!

Man arrested for stabbing in Edgewood.

But of course why use a knife when you have a gun? Which is what this 17yr old did in Baltimore city.

But then again, why run the risk of missing, when you can just firebomb their house, thus ensuring that no one on your street survives your domestic squabble.

Totally classy with a side of good taste

For your viewing pleasure: the geniuses behind the heist of the number 8

How much would they have to pay you to spend the night in Leakin Park? $11k = lowball!

Sentence of the day: "The man's body was placed in a bag while it was still inside the van, to the apparent dismay of onlookers, some of whom lingered for hours in hope of getting a better view."

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

View Larger Map

Baltimore PoliceDept
Suspicious Death - 1225 W PRATT ST/UNITS ARE ON THE SCENE.
TDR's Danny Jacobs Tweets from O'Malley's talk at UB: 80,000 DNA samples from Md. now in federal database, triple number from 2006

Prints Admissible in Fed Capital Murder Case

Brian Keith RoseAfter more than a year of legal wrangling, fingerprint evidence has been ruled admissible in the case of the murder of Warren Fleming (suspect Brian Rose at left)
For more on fingerprint evidence (lots, lots more) here's a page

The Ink with the past week's 3 murders

Ace Deuce reporter Terry Owens: Hate teens' neighbor says "are not the white supremacist some have labelled them" but "regular teens who enjoy eating hot dogs and riding bicycles." But "he fears the teens could be drove to that lifestyle if they're branded white supremacist by the media"

"Kitten Tortured By Children Expected To Recover"

City police arrested four for the theft of an aluminum number 8

Didn't like your grade?

A suspicious package left at city school headquarters.

Former IG speaks...sort of

Former Inspector General Hilton Green, who resigned after investigating the Robert Clay suicide case, speaks publicly for the first time since quitting.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Winos rejoice

Shirley's Honey Hole, scene of a hextuple shooting in June, will be back in the souse trade by November, with fresh new security cameras and a guard.

A double shooting last night near Bolton Hill

Panty thief pleads guilty

Homicide Victims Identified

143: Identified as David Deans, 25

149: Identified as Chris Hester, 38

151: Identified as Jamaal Holmes, 25

152: Identified as David Hunt, 23

With lots thanks to Justin Fenton of The Baltimore Sun for the help.
Fingerprint evidence debated in Security Square Mall capital murder case

Details on the bust of alleged sticky-fingered cop Michael Sylvester

"Police crackdown a hit in SW Baltimore" - the double metaphors, not so much

There's a thought: before we spend more $ on criminal justice programs, we should figure out what works.

Study finds youth violence, truancy linked

Poor Tony Fein, arrested and then cut from the team

More lawsuits
for Ritz-Carlton developers

Evocative headline of the day: "Cops, Jews, Square Off On Field"