Change of venue is denied Murder trial to stay in Carroll

May 26, 1993|By Darren Allen | Darren Allen,Staff Writer

The trial of one of the four defendants in the drug-related shooting death of a Westminster man will not be moved from Carroll Circuit Court, a judge ruled yesterday.

Judge Francis M. Arnold denied Timothy Cumberland's change of venue request, but agreed to lower his bail from $250,000 to $150,000.

Mr. Cumberland, 23, of Reisterstown, is charged with first- and second-degree murder, manslaughter, conspiracy and related charges in the Jan. 30 slaying of Gregory Lamont Howard, 22, of Old Manchester Road.

In his April change of venue request, Mr. Cumberland said pretrial publicity would make a fair trial impossible in Carroll County.

Also charged in the killing is Samuel Allen Miller, 22, of Owings Mills. Police charged Daniel Justin Leonard, 23, of Reisterstown with felony murder because he is accused of being an accessory before and after the fact. A fourth suspect, Matthew August Balaz Sr., 25, of Westminster was arrested and charged with being an accessory after the fact.

Mr. Miller, the alleged trigger man, is being held without bond; Mr. Leonard is free on $100,000 bond; and Mr. Balaz was released on personal recognizance shortly after his arrest.

According to police, Mr. Cumberland, Mr. Miller and Mr. Leonard went to South Center Street to buy cocaine and purchased what they thought was cocaine for $40. After driving away, police said, the three discovered they had been sold laundry detergent. They drove back, looking for the person who sold them the bogus crack. Mr. Howard walked toward the car and was shot, police said.

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