Props to the Prosecutors but this Account is Freaking Terrifying

Photo by PoPville flickr user Michael T. Ruhl

From a press release:

Three District Men Sentenced to Prison Terms
In Attempted Drive-By Shooting of Rival Neighborhood
– More Than 25 Shots Fired in Pre-Dawn Attack –

WASHINGTON – Three men have been sentenced to prison terms on charges stemming from their roles in an attempted drive-by shooting that targeted a rival neighborhood and their subsequent efforts to obstruct justice, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced today.

Sergio Waynes, 24, was sentenced today to 10 years in prison for assault with a dangerous weapon, possession of a firearm during a crime of violence, unlawful possession of a firearm, carrying a pistol without a license, tampering with evidence, and obstruction of justice. Brian Coles, 27, was sentenced today to three years in prison for unlawful possession of a firearm, carrying a pistol without a license, and obstruction of justice. Marcio Green, 28, was sentenced on February 27, 2012 to a seven-year prison term for assault with a dangerous weapon, possession of a firearm during a crime of violence, and carrying a pistol without a license.

All three defendants are from Washington, D.C. They were convicted by a jury in December 2011 following a trial in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia and sentenced by the Honorable Heidi M. Pasichow.

The government’s evidence at trial demonstrated that the defendants were affiliated with the Kennedy Street neighborhood in Northwest Washington, a crew also known as “KDY.” KDY has a rivalry with the Crittenden Street neighborhood in Northwest Washington, also known as “CRT.” Waynes believed that individuals from CRT were responsible for the July 2009 murder of his best friend, Dewayne Coles, 20, a KDY member and the brother of defendant Coles.

Early on August 17, 2011, the defendants were overheard talking about Dewayne Coles and seen pouring out liquor, presumably in tribute to him. They also were seen passing around a semi-automatic handgun with an extended clip during various points. Then, shortly after 5 a.m., the defendants made their way in Waynes’s vehicle from the Kennedy Street neighborhood into CRT territory, near Ninth and Crittenden Streets NW, at which point Green commented about someone he saw on the street and told Waynes to stop the car.

Armed with the semi-automatic pistol with an extended clip, Green exited the vehicle. At that point, no fewer than 26 bullets began to fly. Although it is not clear whether Green was able to fire before he himself was hit, the government’s evidence established that Waynes and Green had entered their rival neighborhood’s territory on a mission to seek revenge, and upon seeing their intended targets, Green brought upon himself, the eyewitnesses and the residents of this otherwise quiet residential neighborhood a hail of gunfire that resulted in two gunshot injuries to Green. Following the shooting, numerous acts of obstruction and tampering ensued, including efforts to persuade eyewitnesses to lie to the police and tamper with evidence, as well as the discarding of the weapon used in the shootings.

The shooting was one of many violent episodes in a back-and-forth battle between the warring neighborhood crews. This prosecution was, in part, the result of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s initiative to target gang violence in the District of Columbia, and to stop the cycle of violence.

U.S. Attorney Machen commended the efforts of the Metropolitan Police Department officers who were involved in the investigation and prosecution of this case. He commended the outstanding work of Detectives Thomas Austin-Braxton, Curtis Prince, John Cobb, and Michael Pepperman; Crime Scene Search Officer Jaron Hickman, and Officers Eric Young, Jeffrey Maslona, and Kenneth Bryant. U.S. Attorney Machen also cited the efforts of several members of his staff, including Litigation Support Services technicians Tracy Van Atta, Jeannie Lattimore Brown, and Joshua Ellen; Victim Witness Specialist Michael Hailey; Paralegals Wanda Trice, Debra Smith, and Kelly Blakeney, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Katherine Sawyer and Jennifer Kerkhoff, who investigated, indicted, and presented the government’s case at trial.

24 Comment

  • maximum in this sentence was only 10 yrs? i dont get it.

  • I live in the neighborhood, and I cooperated with the police and the prosecuting attorney on this case. I’m glad it worked out.

  • gang retaliation? not SO scary, unless you’re in a gang. that house robbery where the woman was tied up and assaulted in her own home in ledroit park? that terrifies me more

    • OR if you happen to walking your kid home from school when the gangs start spraying bullets around the neighborhood.

      Don’t assume that because you ‘re not directly involved in nefarious activity that you’ll be magically spared its consequences.

  • Wow, those are some ridiculously light sentences. Maybe I am spoiled by my closer familiarity with the federal sentencing regime, but an attempted, pre-meditated gang assassination, including unleashing an arsenal that could have easily killed one more more bystanders, like this should warrant at least double the sentences these guys seem to have received (especially when you consider the fact that they will surely be released far earlier on parole, and likely had extensive prior criminal records). I don’t advocate harsh sentences for purely drug offenses, but what is the difference between these guys and someone who actually kills someone? Just bad aim, is all. Incredible that they will all no doubt be back out on the streets by, at the latest, their early 30’s. Just depressing.

    • Where were the conspiracy charges? This was conspiracy to commit murder. Is there some reason that this sort of gang activity isn’t prosecuted using laws designed to eliminate organized crime?

  • Glad the punks were sentenced but Wow, 10 years max sentence? Lack of consequences breeds more crime

  • It’s scary when you live right there. Oddly, I don’t remember this August incident at all.

    • Agreed. I don’t remember this one at all. Not cool knowing the gang three blocks south of me, and five blocks north of me are at “war”

      Also agree, sentances seem light. I would have liked to have seen more like 10 for the lightest, and 15 for the guy who got 10.

      Hopefully these guys can get their lives back together, and not cause more problems when they get out, but I doubt it.

  • sweet. 10 years. /insert sarcasm.

    what a joke. i mean, good to know these #@$#Q%)( are off the street for 10 years, but that’s a ridiculously light sentence.

    so, on top of the shooting, which should warrant far more than 10 years, other shadiness was going on like witness tampering, etc. and they still only got 10 years?

    lesson learned. if you want to commit crimes, do it in DC because you know you’re not spending much time in the clink and you’ll be back on the streets in no time to resume your asshat behavior.

  • No props to the prosecutors. This kind of lazy prosecution and light sentencing will never change anything.

  • What’s doubly incredible is that this sentencing followed a jury trial. It’s one thing if this was a result of a plea deal in which a lower sentence was offered in a difficult-to-prove case. But following a jury trial, with no acceptance of responsibility, and no plea deal? These sentences are a travesty and I HOPE not typical for this type of offense in DC. The sentencing judge was a former prosecutor, so you would not expect her to be an unusually light sentences. I just don’t get it.

  • Until we get some of these young people more employment and uducation opportunitties these incidents will keep occuring. It’s the system that let these young people down.

    • No, their families let them down. Growing up poor is not an excuse for criminal behavior. My wife and I both grew up poor, but now we count ourselves as successful. To blame the system or poverty or some other structural condition for people’s bad behavior is an insult to good people and families who do the right thing in spite of their material deprivation.

      • No, it’s their own fault. There are thousands of poor kids who grow up in this city and don’t end up thugs like this. The vast majority, most likely, otherwise it would still be like the Nineties.

  • These guys should have been prosecuted as career criminals in possession of firearms under federal law. That one of them will be out in 3 years is a travesty. That our city tolerates so many violent crews (aka organized crime), but treats these cases as simple gun violations is freakin’ lame.

  • Not long enough. And where will these losers land when they get out? Right back in my neighborhood, hopefully not nursing the same myopic resentments and eye for an eye philosophies, with lots of prison earned know how to boot. Grand. 9th and Crittenden is two blocks from the restaurant strip on Georgia and just three blocks from three different public schools.

  • What about being within a mile of an elementary school? Isn’t that worth making their sentences more severe. I live 4 blocks from where this occured and there are children and teenagers (good AND bad) walking the sidewalks all time.

  • How did the shooter not get life? He’ll be out in less than 10, and unless his housing project gets demolished before then, he’ll be arrested in the exact same neighborhood for the same shit.

  • Didn’t this happen back in December? Why put this up now? I mean I get it but…

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