Judge sentences teen to 55 years in killing of man in Brooklyn Park

Concurrent terms given for crimes in city, Arundel

October 01, 1999|By Andrea F. Siegel | Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF

A Brooklyn teen-ager was sentenced yesterday to 55 years in prison for killing a man last year at a Brooklyn Park motel during what prosecutors said was a three-month spree that included armed robberies and the deaths of two people.

Larry J. Fout, 18, fatally shot Stanley R. Cobb, 33, in the parking lot of the Park Plaza Hotel in the 4900 block of Ritchie Highway, where Cobb had been living for about a year.

His sentence by Anne Arundel County Circuit Judge Pamela L. North was part of a plea bargain involving four cases, two in Anne Arundel County and two in Baltimore.

Fout was sentenced for first-degree murder in Cobb's death and for the armed robbery of a woman in Anne Arundel. He was sentenced for automobile manslaughter in the death of Waylon McHenry, 19, of Brooklyn Park, in an accident caused by Fout, and the armed robbery of a cabdriver in Baltimore.

The offenses took place in August, September and October of last year.

What caused Fout, of the 3600 block of Brooklyn Ave., to shoot Cobb was unclear. Witnesses would have testified during a trial that Fout intended to sell drugs to Cobb, but when Fout decided to rob him, the victim turned to run and was shot in the back, said Assistant State's Attorney Kathleen Evans.

Fout said he thought Cobb had a weapon.

He pleaded guilty before North in the Anne Arundel cases in August, and in the Baltimore cases yesterday. The sentence, encompassing all four cases, called for life in prison with all but 55 years suspended.

Though Fout could be eligible for parole consideration after serving half the time, neither attorney envisioned Fout leaving prison as a young man.

Cobb was the father of a teen-age son who silently watched yesterday's proceedings with other relatives; Cobb also fathered a second son, born after he was killed.

Fout apologized in court yesterday.

Defense lawyer Allan H. Rombro asked North to consider recommending that prison officials evaluate Fout for a rehabilitative program at Patuxent Institution in Jessup, but she refused.

Rombro said Fout's childhood was so wretched that "had things turned out differently for him, all of us would have been surprised."

Fout's parents divorced when he was young. He and his sisters were unable to live with their mother, who had a drinking problem, Rombro said. Relatives took in his sisters, but nobody took Fout.

He lived with his father and his father's girlfriend until he was 11, when they threw him out, Rombro said. He survived selling drugs on the street, and living in motels and in crack houses, dropped out of high school and got in trouble.

Rombro was disappointed that Fout did not win a judicial recommendation to Patuxent.

"This is a kind of case that seems made for some intervention," the attorney said.

Evans opposed a sentence to the program at Patuxent.

"This defendant, over a 47-day period, took the lives of two different men and affected the lives of countless others," she said.

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