Trial begins in fatal shooting in Owings Mills

Botched robbery led to killing, prosecutor says

April 20, 2004|By Julie Bykowicz | Julie Bykowicz,SUN STAFF

Trial began yesterday in Baltimore County Circuit Court for a 23-year-old Baltimore man who, with three others, is accused of killing another Baltimore man during a robbery last year in Owings Mills.

A Baltimore County prosecutor said in his opening statement that Reginald J. Manning fatally shot Donnie A. Joy Jr. in the back during the botched robbery June 13. Prosecutor Dean Stocksdale said the group wanted to rob Joy, who lived with his mother in Edmondson Village, so they could pay for a trip to a Six Flags amusement park in Largo.

The prosecutor said Manning fired the bullet that killed Joy and then sped off in the 28-year-old man's 1996 Lincoln Continental to take a woman whom he had accidentally shot to a nearby hospital.

"Donnie was left to die face down by himself on Pleasant Hill Road," Stocksdale said.

The injured woman, Nicole M. Mongelli, 19, of Westminster, and Chantiece R. Koromah, 19, of Baltimore have pleaded guilty to robbery with a deadly and dangerous weapon. Prosecutors said the two women made the phone call that prompted Joy to drive out to Owings Mills that night.

Under a plea arrangement with prosecutors, Koromah and Mongelli agreed to testify against Manning and another defendant and will be sentenced after their trials.

Larry Ervin Jackson, 20, of Baltimore also is charged with first-degree murder in Joy's killing and is scheduled for trial next month. Prosecutors said Jackson stole money from Joy's pockets after Manning shot him as he tried to flee.

Manning has pleaded not guilty. His public defender, attorney Spencer Gordon, said in his opening statement that his client was not involved in a robbery; rather, the killing was a "collision of criminal worlds."

Gordon did not offer his own version of what happened that night, saying only that Manning and Joy lived in "the world of the 'hood.'" He said the four accused of Joy's killing all hung out in Edmondson Village, a place he called "rough" and filled with "drugging and hustling."

Joy's mother, the only person to testify yesterday, presented a different picture of her only son, the father of 8- and 2-year-old girls.

Through tears, Linda Pendleton told jurors she made her son lunch every morning before he headed out to his construction job. She said he had just completed a two-year welding course and was scheduled to receive his welding certificate June 15, two days after he was killed.

She recalled the last night she saw her son, with whom she had lived.

"He said, `Ma, I'll be right back,'" she testified. Detectives knocked on her door at 8:30 the next morning.

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