Sentence leaves victim unhappy

June 12, 1994|By Mike Farabaugh | Mike Farabaugh,Sun Staff Writer

A 57-year-old Aberdeen woman, the victim of a burglary, robbery and kidnapping last June, says she is unhappy with the sentence imposed Wednesday in Harford Circuit Court on one of the two men convicted of terrorizing her last year.

Dorothy McDowell expressed dissatisfaction with Circuit Court Judge William O. Carr's sentencing of William Daniel Borden, 20, of Darlington, to 15 years in state prison, with five years suspended, on the kidnapping conviction.

"I'm very upset that he [Borden] got less time than an accomplice who cooperated with police against him," Mrs. McDowell said.

The judge suspended 10-year sentences on Borden's related burglary and robbery convictions, and ordered him to serve three years of supervised probation after his release from prison.

Judge Carr ordered Borden to serve his sentence consecutively to a four-year prison term he is serving for a previous robbery. Borden's kidnapping conviction also violated a two-year probation he received in a cocaine case as a juvenile.

The knowledge that Borden must serve the remainder of those six years plus 10 more also did not please prosecutor Hans Miller.

"No amount of mitigation in the world can justify a sentence as short as 10 years in this case," said Mr. Miller.

Mr. Miller said he could not explain the sentence in view of the defendant's prior convictions on robbery and drug charges, and his conviction by a jury in this case.

The prosecutor had argued for a 25-year prison sentence. Defense attorney Stuart Alison asked Judge Carr not to "bury his client."

Borden's accomplice, Neil Anthony Williams, 21, received a 15-year sentence, with three years suspended, after cooperating with prosecutors.

Judge Carr declined to discuss the sentence.

Mrs. McDowell, a widow, said she was a virtual invalid when Borden and Williams broke into her townhouse on June 5, 1993.

She said she was sleeping on the living room sofa because she was suffering from a broken hip she had received the previous December in a car accident. She said the men surprised her and threw a blanket over her head, and that she never saw either of them.

"But I knew that one of them had been in my home before by the way he asked questions and made statements," Mrs. McDowell said.

Her tip led investigators to Neil Williams, a friend of the victim's son who had visited her home in April 1993. Williams implicated Borden, who was free on bond and awaiting trial on robbery charges.

Mrs. McDowell recalled her horror as the men forced her to go with them in her car to three banks with automated teller machines.

"I gave them my bank card and even told them how to use it, but they still forced me to go with them," she said.

According to evidence presented at the trial, Borden and Williams stole $244, jewelry and a videocassette recorder from the woman's home, and forced her to go to the ATM locations about 4 a.m. They got an additional $600 from the machines before they took her home.

Mrs. McDowell said the men ransacked her home, taped her hands, feet and mouth, and left in her car.

Mrs. McDowell discovered that her telephone wires had been cut, found her cane and set out up the street, limping, to get help.

Mrs. McDowell said she was not seriously injured but that her emotional trauma still lingers.

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