Annapolis man, 22, sentenced to 30-year term in fatal shooting


An Annapolis man was sentenced yesterday to 30 years in prison for killing a man who had complained about him firing random shots.

Derrick Lamont Brown, 22, pleaded guilty in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court to second-degree murder and a handgun offense in the death of Benjamin Phillip "Benjie" Evans, 25, of Annapolis.

Evans was smoking a cigarette outside his girlfriend's home in the Robinwood public-housing community at 1:30 a.m. Feb. 25 when Brown began shooting a semiautomatic pistol.

Evans protested, saying: "Man, why you shooting over here - can't you see we are sitting here?" according to police documents.

Brown shot Evans in the back. He died at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center.

"This is something everyone in this community despairs about," Judge Paul A. Hackner said, adding that the defendant's actions showed "a total lack of moral center, a total lack of knowing right from wrong."

Brown appeared in court with his defense attorney, but he elected not to speak.

His attorney, David P. Putzi, said: "I will say on his behalf that all of us agree that their loved one did not deserve this fate."

Frederick Paone, the assistant state's attorney who prosecuted the case, said: "I have to pose a question - What was this man doing in Robinwood? He didn't live in Robinwood. He was hanging out there. ... This is exactly the kind of behavior we're trying to discourage."

There have been six homicides in Annapolis this year, compared with five all of last year.

Members of Evans' family cried as two of Evans' sisters read from a prepared statement. Torria Evans Watkins, 33, cradled a photograph of her brother and his children, a 1-year-old boy and a 7-year-old daughter, as she spoke.

"You took what was so precious to us and our family," she said. "His children will have to grow up without a father because of your senseless, carelessness act of crime that you committed. ... We pray for you and this cruel world."

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.