Trial For Accused Rapist Delayed To April

Attorney For Bruno Files Insanity Plea With Circuit Court

January 27, 1991|By Alan J. Craver | Alan J. Craver,Staff writer

The trial for a Baltimore County man charged in the sexual attack ofa woman while riding in a limousine last March has been delayed until April 4.

Michael A. Bruno, 32, of Glen Arm, was to stand trial Monday in Harford Circuit Court, but a postponment was granted last week.

Bruno's attorney, David R. Solomon of Baltimore, has filed a pleaof not criminally responsible by reason of insanity for his client.

The woman, from Essex in Baltimore County, said she was raped on March 29 by three men in the back of the white limousine after they repeatedly shocked her with an electric "stun gun," court records say.

Bruno will be the third man to stand trial in Harford Circuit Court for the incident. He faces 18 charges, including two counts of first-degree rape.

The other two men -- Andre S. Whims, 27, of Phoenix, Baltimore County, and Robert W. Ambrose, 27, of Joppatowne -- were acquitted during separate trials in Circuit Court.

Whims and Ambrose, as well as the victim, have been subpoenaed by the state to testify against Bruno, according to court documents.

In addition to first-degree rape, Bruno is charged by state police at Benson with two counts of first-degree sex offense and one count each of second-degreerape, second-degree sex offense, sodomy, kidnapping, false imprisonment, assault with intent to rape, assault and battery, assault and a weapon charge.

Bruno also is charged with solicitation to commit murder after he suggested to Whims and Ambrose that they kill the woman to prevent her from going to the police. The other men talked Brunoout of harming the woman, according to a police report.

Bruno faces additional charges -- a second count of solicitation to commit murder, obstruction of justice and intimidation of a witness-- after he allegedly tried a second time to have the woman killed.

Police said Bruno offered an undercover state police officer, whom Bruno thought was a hired killer, $1,500 to murder the woman on July 28.

During the Whims and Ambrose trials, the victim testified that she agreed to go for a ride with the men in their limousine after she met them at a Baltimore show bar, where she performed that night.

The group drove to Essex because some of the men wanted cocaine, but they nevergot any drugs.

But Whims and Ambrose testified that the woman wanted the cocaine and agreed to have sex with them if they bought her drugs.

Bruno is being held on $250,000 bond at the state Correctional Adjustment Center in Baltimore City. If convicted, Bruno could face life in prison, say prosecutors.

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