Man, 21, indicted in Oakland Mills killing


June 27, 2008|By TYEESHA DIXON

A Howard County grand jury has indicted Ronald Derrick McConnell on a charge of first-degree murder in last month's shooting of a 23-year-old Columbia man.

McConnell, 21, is accused in the killing of Jason Pridgen Batts, who was found shot in the parking lot of Stevens Forest Apartments in Oakland Mills village on May 17. The 11-count indictment, which was handed up Wednesday, also charges McConnell with conspiracy to commit murder, attempted armed robbery and assault.

Several of the charges relate to crimes against two other people, a man and a woman who were not named in the indictment.

An informant told police that McConnell, also known as "Rock," ordered the killing over an "ongoing dispute," according to the documents.

Police arrested McConnell, also of Columbia, on May 20 after finding a shotgun buttstock bearing his fingerprint at the scene. A witness also told police that McConnell was seen with a shotgun and shells matching the ones found at the crime scene, according to the documents.

The shooting was one of two in Oakland Mills that weekend; the other was not fatal.

Batts' death was the first homicide in Oakland Mills since 2003, police said. It was the second of two homicides in Howard County this year.

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