Man guilty in murder of woman near ATM Victim, 72, refused to give up withdrawal

March 26, 1996|By Kate Shatzkin | Kate Shatzkin,SUN STAFF

A man accused of leading a gang of armed robbers pleaded guilty yesterday to the murder in June of a 72-year-old Waverly woman who refused to give up the money she had just withdrawn from a bank machine.

Under the plea agreement in Baltimore Circuit Court, Andre Edwin Allen, 35, is to be sentenced to life in prison plus 20 years for the death of Pearl Elizabeth Moffett.

His lawyers asked that he not be sentenced until June -- after federal bank robbery charges against him are resolved -- so that he can serve the time in a federal facility.

Mrs. Moffett's youngest son, Chuck Moffett, said yesterday he was satisfied with Allen's plea agreement. "I feel it was just," he said.

But Steven Allen, Allen's brother, was surprised. "I always thought he didn't do it," he said. "It was a shock to hear it."

Mrs. Moffett had just withdrawn $1,500 from a NationsBank branch on Greenmount Avenue on June 9 when she was approached by a man who demanded her money.

When she refused, he hit her on the head, left and returned to demand money again.

The man fired a single shot, which struck Mrs. Moffett in the buttocks and traveled into her body, causing the internal bleeding that killed her.

Police say Allen targeted Mrs. Moffett after her nephew, Danny Paul McGee of Parkville, supplied him with her banking schedule. Prosecutor Denise M. Fili said yesterday that Mr. McGee's name and telephone number had been found in a search of Allen's home. She said Mrs. Moffett was killed with a gun stolen from her son-in-law -- whose Baltimore County home had been burglarized.

Police and family members said Mr. McGee, 39, was fired from the family cleaning business two days before his aunt was killed.

Mr. McGee yesterday turned down an offer from Judge Clifton J. Gordy Jr. to plead guilty to murder and conspiracy charges and be sentenced to between 30 and 40 years in prison. Jury selection in his trial on first-degree murder and related charges is to begin this morning.

Allen also pleaded guilty yesterday to one count of robbery with a deadly weapon in the kidnapping and robbery of a North Baltimore family June 25.

Prosecutors said Allen and another member of the gang, Paul Curtis Matthews, forced their way into the home of a North Baltimore couple June 25, holding them at gunpoint with their 6-month-old son and forcing them to go by car to an automated teller machine and withdraw money. Allen and Matthews then drove the family back to their home in the 300 block of Birkwood Place and took their television set before fleeing.

Matthews, 32, yesterday pleaded guilty to two counts of robbery with a deadly weapon and two counts of using a handgun in the commission of a felony. He admitted holding the North Baltimore family at gunpoint and to forcing another man to withdraw money from an ATM March 24, 1995.

Matthews is to be sentenced May 16; under a plea agreement, he is to receive between 20 and 30 years in prison.

Pub Date: 3/26/96

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