Man, 20, pleads guilty in killing of student, gets 40-year sentence

November 27, 2001|By Sarah Koenig | Sarah Koenig,SUN STAFF

A 20-year-old Baltimore man pleaded guilty yesterday to shooting and killing a Lake Clifton-Eastern High School student on school grounds early this year and was sentenced to 40 years in prison.

Gerald A. Lane of the 5100 block of Edmondson Ave. in West Baltimore pleaded guilty in Baltimore Circuit Court to second-degree murder and handgun crimes.

An investigation found that Lane had had a dispute with Juan Matthews, 17, of the 5100 block of Conant Way. The two had grown up near each other.

On the morning of Jan. 17, two men approached Matthews near the Northeast Baltimore school, police said. As Matthews walked away, Lane followed and fired from behind as students entered the building to start the school day, the state's attorney's office said.

Matthews was hit three times and collapsed inside the school. The killing sent about 100 terrified students scrambling for cover.

Matthews died several hours later at Johns Hopkins Hospital, where Lane was a housekeeper.

After witnesses identified him in a photo lineup, Lane was arrested at the hospital in May and charged with first-degree murder.

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