Elk­ton Man gets 30 months for rob­bery

Cecil Whig - - OBITUARIES & LOCAL - By CARL HAMIL­TON

ca­hamil­ton@ce­cil­whig.com

— A man re­ceived a 30-month prison term Mon­day for his role in rob­bing four peo­ple at gun­point in­side an Elk­ton-area home.

Ce­cil County Cir­cuit Court Judge Jane Cairns Mur­ray im­posed the twoand-a-half-year sen­tence on Elk­ton-area res­i­dent Markuise Davon Gray, 22, af­ter he pleaded guilty to rob­bery, as part of a bind­ing plea agree­ment ne­go­ti­ated by Deputy State’s At­tor­ney Steven L. Tros­tle and the de­fen­dant’s Bal­ti­more-based lawyer, Gil S. Amaral.

Gray will serve his term in a Mary­land De­part­ment of Cor­rec­tions prison.

Also part of the plea bar­gain, pros­e­cu­tors dropped armed rob­bery, home in­va­sion and 12 other charges against Gray.

Amaral told the judge that his client had no crim­i­nal record be­fore this in­ci­dent — one in which Gray and an­other masked gun­men, Jerry Robert Catchings, then 17, barged into a res­i­dence in the 100 block of Court­ney Drive near Elk­ton about 12:30 a.m. on March 25, 2015 and forced the oc­cu­pants — two men and two women — to lay on the floor.

While the vic­tims were prone, the duo and an ac­com­plice who served as a setup man — Jevon Wes­ley Mills, 19, of the 100 block of Pheas­ant Drive near Elk­ton — stole $80 and ap­prox­i­mately $2,000 worth of prop­erty, po­lice re­ported.

“This is a case of young per­son mak­ing a bad de­ci­sion that will af­fect him in a dra­matic way,” Amaral told the judge.

ELK­TON

The de­fense lawyer main­tained that Gray’s par­tic­i­pa­tion in the rob­bery, which he opined wasn’t well planned, was out of char­ac­ter for his client. Amaral con­tended that Gray has no pro­cliv­ity for vi­o­lence and crime in gen­eral.

Catchings, who had a mi­nor crim­i­nal record be­fore par­tic­i­pat­ing in the home-in­va­sion-style holdup, re­ceived a three-year sen­tence in Fe­bru­ary af­ter he too pleaded guilty to rob­bery as part of a plea deal.

Mills, who pleaded guilty to con­spir­acy to com­mit armed rob­bery, re­ceived a two-year prison term in De­cem­ber. Specif­i­cally, the judge im­posed a 10-year sen­tence with eight years sus­pended and or­dered him to serve four years of su­per­vised pro­ba­tion af­ter his prison re­lease.

The rob­bery vic­tims, who were ac­quainted with some of the de­fen­dants, did not want to co­op­er­ate with po­lice and pros­e­cu­tors, ac­cord­ing to Tros­tle. That re­luc­tance had a bear­ing on the plea deals of­fered, he noted.

“Or­di­nar­ily, we would seek more jail time in a case like this, but we had some re­sis­tance from some of the vic­tims,” Tros­tle said.

De­spite the vic­tims’ re­sis­tance to co­op­er­ate, Mary­land State Po­lice Tfc. Alan Flaugher, lead in­ves­ti­ga­tor, and other de­tec­tives were able to de­velop Gray, Catchings and Mills as sus­pects and ar­rest them, Tros­tle noted.

“But for the hard work of the in­ves­ti­ga­tors in this case, we may never have known who the cul­prits were. The troop­ers did a great job solv­ing this case,” Tros­tle said.

Flaugher was able to place Gray at the crime scene through com­mu­ni­ca­tions on Mills’ Face­book ac­count, ac­cord­ing to court records, which iden­tify Mills and Gray as cousins.

MSP de­tec­tives also were able to di­rectly link Gray to one piece of the stolen prop­erty — a Sony Playsta­tion 4 that Gray sold to GameS­top two weeks af­ter the rob­bery, po­lice said. The se­rial num­ber on the Playsta­tion that Gray sold matched the se­rial num­ber on the one stolen dur­ing the rob­bery, po­lice added.

In­ves­ti­ga­tors ar­rested Gray on May 19, about seven weeks af­ter the rob­bery and some 19 days af­ter MSP de­tec­tives took Mills into cus­tody, po­lice re­ported. On Mon­day, the judge gave Mills credit for 49 days that he served in the county jail be­fore post­ing bond.

In­ves­ti­ga­tors were able to iden­tify Mills us­ing in­for­ma­tion pro­vided by the vic­tims, who were ac­quainted with Mills enough to know him only as “Jae,” court records show.

Shortly be­fore the home in­va­sion, the four vic­tims saw Mills stand­ing in the park­ing lot in front of the Court­ney Drive res­i­dence, and he told them that he was wait­ing for his cousin, po­lice said.

Mo­ments later, Mills knocked on the door and asked if he could wait for his cousin in­side the home, and the vic­tims obliged, po­lice added.

Mills, who seemed “ner­vous” and was “act­ing sus­pi­ciously,” left the res­i­dence to get his cell­phone, ac­cord­ing to court records. Within a few min­utes af­ter Mills re­turned, the two masked gun­men barged into the res­i­dence and, with his help, robbed the four res­i­dents, po­lice re­ported.

GRAY

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.