Stepfather charged with arson, murder in teenager's death

13-year-old found dead in burning rowhouse

infant injured in blaze

July 27, 2005|By Laura Barnhardt | Laura Barnhardt,SUN STAFF

The stepfather of the 13-year-old Essex girl found dead in a burning Essex rowhouse this week was accused yesterday of killing the girl and setting the house on fire before fleeing the scene.

Baltimore County police were searching yesterday for Carl Preston Evans Jr., 35, who was charged in a warrant with first-degree murder, attempted murder and first-degree arson. Police say the fire was apparently set to cover up the killing of Breaunna Floyd.

Evans is listed as a sexually violent offender on Maryland's Sex Offender Registry.

Police declined to say how the girl was killed or what the motive for her slaying might have been. On Monday, firefighters discovered her body upstairs in the house, in the 900 block of Foxridge Lane. Also in the house was her 7-month-old half-sister, who was taken to University of Maryland Medical Center for treatment of injuries suffered in the fire, police said.

The infant girl, Mosett Evans, was released yesterday from the hospital, said Bill Toohey, a county police spokesman.

Witnesses told police they saw Carl Evans go into the townhouse just before the fire was reported, about 1 p.m. Monday, and that he was seen leaving the house, saying, "My kids are dead." He left the scene as emergency crews were arriving, police said.

Kerlesia Givens, 44, who lives on that block, said Monday that she saw Evans running down an alley behind the house after the fire began, adding that she didn't see him again.

Police said that after the fire they found in the house some of Evans' belongings that he had left the house with that morning.

The mother of the 13-year-old girl and the infant was at an undisclosed location yesterday as "a security measure" until police could find Evans, Toohey said.

Evans was convicted of first-degree rape in a 1991 Baltimore case, authorities said. He was charged with raping a 21-year-old woman in West Baltimore at gunpoint and beating the woman. Four other suspects were arrested in the rape case, court records show.

Evans pleaded guilty to first-degree rape and was given a 10-year prison sentence, with eight years and six months of it suspended, according to court records. He was also sentenced to seven years and eight months in prison for violating probation, according to court records.

Evans was charged last year with burglary, assault and kidnapping in Allegany County, according to court records. His defense lawyer in the case, Stephen R. Tully, said the charges stemmed from a confrontation between Evans and the husband of a woman Evans was allegedly having a relationship with at the time in Cumberland. The kidnapping charge related to Evans allegedly taking the woman out of her house, Tully said.

All of the charges were dropped by Allegany County prosecutors in May after a judge denied a request by the state's attorney's office for a continuance in the case, according to court documents and records.

Anyone with information about Evans is asked to call police at 410-307-2020.

Sun staff writer Danny Jacobs contributed to this article.

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