Machete-wielding Robber Given 8 Years, Partner 17

February 08, 1991|By Jay Apperson | Jay Apperson,Staff writer

Two Annapolis men, including one with a flare for exotic weaponry, were sentenced to prison yesterday for robbing a City Dock restaurant.

One had used a .38 caliber handgun, a typical tool for such an armed robbery. But the other had been armed with a machete -- "a knife that would put Crocodile Dundee to shame," a county prosecutor said.

Assistant State's Attorney Frederick M. Paone said the knife had a blade between 16 and 18 inches long.

Yesterday's sentencing cametwo months after the men pleaded guilty to armed robbery in county Circuit Court. Melvin L. Dorsey Jr., 33, had used the gun in the May 8robbery of the Harbor House restaurant; he was sentenced to 17 yearsin prison yesterday.

Machete-wielding Christopher J. Palmer, 23, got eight years in prison. Both had listed addresses in the 1100 block Eastport Terrace. Dorsey had been a kitchen employee at the Harbor House.

Paone said Palmer got a lesser sentence because he did not have a record to match Dorsey's, which included arrests for larceny going back to 1976 and a 12-year sentence for armed robbery in 1981.

Assistant Public Defender Carol McCabe, representing Dorsey, said her client had a "very horrible childhood" with alcoholic parents, followed by stays in foster homes that were even worse. She said Dorsey had a drug and alcohol problem and was drunk when he pulled off the robbery at the Harbor House.

"It's no excuse, your honor, but when you look at this man's background, you see why he's here today," McCabe said.

Dorsey told the judge he had apologized in writing to therobbery victim.

"I know you're not pleased with my record and neither am I, but again, I am sorry for what I have done," he added.

Before sentencing Dorsey, Circuit Judge Eugene M. Lerner said he is getting sick of seeing cases where criminals "bother" people in downtown Annapolis.

"I think what has to be posted is a sign on every door that says anybody who bothers anybody trying to make a legitimate living is going to jail," the judge said. After recommending that Dorsey receive psychiatric treatment in prison, the judge told the man, "Leave people alone and stop bothering them."

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