Man jailed for sex with young girls

April 26, 1994|By Alan J. Craver | Alan J. Craver,Sun Staff Writer

A man whom Howard County police suspect in the slaying of a Columbia girl last summer was sentenced to 20 years in prison yesterday for having sexual relationships with two other girls.

Curtis Aden Jamison, 29, of Baltimore was given the sentence after pleading guilty in Howard Circuit Court to three counts of second-degree rape and one second-degree sexual offense.

Jamison pleaded guilty to charges that he had intercourse and performed sex acts with two girls. The victims were 12 and 13 years old at the time of the incidents, which occurred between February 1992 and June 1993.

Jamison told Judge Raymond Kane Jr. that he is sorry for the relationships. "I learned a lesson," he said. "In the future, when I meet a lady and she tells me her age, I will look into it more closely."

Sgt. Pete D'Antuono, supervisor of the Police Department's Crimes Against Persons Unit, said Jamison remains a suspect in the slaying of 15-year-old Tara Allison Gladden, whose body was found in a culvert under Little Patuxent Parkway in Columbia last August.

During yesterday's hearing, Assistant State's Attorney Shirley Ripley said Jamison had sex several times with another girl in the culvert a few months before Tara's slaying.

"[Jamison] is a predator," Ms. Ripley said. "He prays upon young, vulnerable children."

Judge Kane sentenced Jamison to 25 years in prison but suspended five years of the term. Jamison also must complete five years of probation, seek counseling and avoid contact with the victims.

Jamison must serve five years of the sentence before he will be eligible for a hearing before the state Parole Commission. He could have been sentenced to a total of 80 years in prison for the four counts to which he pleaded guilty.

Prosecutors dropped six counts of second-degree rape, nine second-degree sexual offenses and 11 counts of perverted sexual practices as part of a plea agreement.

George Tindal, a Baltimore attorney for Jamison, argued for a lenient sentence, suggesting a combination of some jail time, a lengthy period of probation and counseling so that Jamison could resume his place in the community.

Mr. Tindal noted that both girls willingly carried on relationships with Jamison, saying his client was only charged because of their ages.

The attorney said one girl only told of her relationship with Jamison after police investigators approached her. He added the other girl has frequently called Jamison's family to check on him since his arrest in September.

"I'm not making my client out to be a saint," the attorney said. "My client realizes his mistakes. He realizes he must pay the consequences."

Ms. Ripley, the prosecutor, detailed the incidents involving Jamison and the girls for Judge Kane.

In February 1992, Jamison drove a 13-year-old Baltimore girl to the Tip Top Motel in Elkridge, where they watched a pornographic movie and then engaged in intercourse.

In the other case, involving a 12-year-old Columbia girl, Jamison took her several places, including wooded areas at Lake Kittamaqundi and near her home off Vantage Point Way, where they had intercourse and performed sex acts.

The girl directed investigators to the place where Jamison kept a sleeping bag for them to use during their encounters, Ms. Ripley said. Police also found condom wrappers and beer and wine bottles at the site.

Jamison initiated sexual relations with the girl in May 1992, one month after meeting her, Ms. Ripley said. The encounters continued until July 1993.

The prosecutor noted that Jamison told the girl not to tell anyone about their relationship -- even after he learned police were investigating him.

"The defendant told [the girl] to stick to her story that nothing happened between them so that this case would be dropped," Ms. Ripley said.

Police learned of Jamison's relationship with the girl last July from Tara Gladden, whose mother called police when she learned her daughter was involved with the man.

Investigators interviewed Tara on July 16 -- six days before she was reported missing. Tara's decomposed body was found on Aug. 17, three weeks after police filed charges of perverted sexual practices, battery and sexual offenses against Jamison in the relationship with her.

Prosecutors dropped those charges last November because they could not pursue the case without Tara's testimony. Meanwhile, the Gladden family is offering a $20,000 reward for information that leads to the conviction of Tara's killer.

David Harvis, a Columbia lawyer who is a spokesman for the Gladdens, said the family hopes news of Jamison's sentence will bring forward people who may have information on Tara's death.

"[Jamison] will not be in a position to threaten children for many years," Mr. Harvis said.

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