Pool hall gunslinger convicted of attempted murder, assault ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY

November 06, 1992|By Dennis O'Brien | Dennis O'Brien,Staff Writer

Jurors convicted a 31-year-old Pasadena man yesterday of shooting a patron in an Annapolis pool hall six times two years ago, in a hail of gunfire described as a scene "out of the Old West."

Tony M. Horne, of the 7800 block of Willings Court, was convicted of assault with intent to murder, assault with intent to maim and assault.

On Nov. 29, 1990, he and two accomplices walked into Brown's pool hall, in the 200 block of Clay St., and shot up the place.

Assistant State's Attorney John Robinson said Horne was the trigger-man, using a silver handgun to shoot Melvin Gatling of Annapolis three times in the back, twice in the ribs and once in the chest.

"He shot over and over and over and over," Mr. Robinson said in closing arguments yesterday.

Horne's brother, Gregory D. Horne, 36, also of the 7800 block of Willings Court, was convicted by a jury Oct. 18, 1991 of assault with intent to murder in the same incident.

Another accomplice, Ernest Bonee, was convicted of battery in the incident.

Horne was arrested six days after the shooting when an eyewitness, Tico Crawford of Annapolis, called police when he saw Horne at a Shell Service Station on West Street wearing the same gold chain and crucifix he was wearing the night of the shooting.

Horne called an Annapolis police detective three weeks after his arrest and offered to make a deal to have the charges reduced, according to testimony.

"Innocent people do not make deals. They don't try to weasel out of these things," Mr. Robinson told jurors.

Horne took the stand during the trial to deny any involvement in the shooting and to say he didn't know the victim. No motive was offered by prosecutors.

Defense attorney Joseph Devlin pointed out that eyewitnesses described the gunman as being considerably smaller than his 6-foot, 2-inch client.

Mr. Devlin also noted that no gun was found, and the coat believed to have been worn by Horne during the shooting did not match witnesses' descriptions.

The jury of six men and six women disagreed, deliberating about three hours before finding Horne guilty on all counts.

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