'I Was At Crime,' Teen Says

Youth Admits Role In Arson Aimed At Avenging Death

July 02, 2009|By Nicole Fuller | Nicole Fuller,nicole.fuller@baltsun.com

A 16-year-old boy admitted Wednesday that he took part in the firebombing of a Piney Orchard townhouse that was intended as retaliation for the recent homicide of a Crofton teenager.

In the equivalent of a guilty plea, he admitted in Juvenile Court his involvement in conspiracy to commit arson. The deal requires him to testify against three others, two juveniles and 22-year-old Jonathan R. Myers, also accused in the June 3 crime that charred the front of the home but did not injure anyone. Other charges will be dropped.

Anne Arundel County Juvenile Court Master Cynthia Ferris ordered the boy, whom The Baltimore Sun is not naming because he is a juvenile, to continue to be held pending a final disposition of his case, scheduled for July 31.

"I was involved. I was at the crime," the teen, whose mother, father and aunt were in court, told Ferris.

His attorney, Gill Cochran, said afterward, "He's cooperated 100 percent. He was obviously involved in something he shouldn't have been involved in and now he's setting the record straight."

Assistant State's Attorney Kimberly DiPietro described the firebombing as a mistaken attempt at retribution for the May 30 death of Christopher Jones, 14.

Myers and three juveniles left a party, held to honor Christopher, to buy cigarettes at a gas station, and Myers told the teens that he wanted to stop by the home of an acquaintance erroneously thought to have been involved in Christopher's death, DiPietro said. Myers and one of the other teens were drinking in the car, and when Myers emerged from the store, that bottle was filled with gas, she said.

They drove to the home, and the teen told prosecutors that he saw Myers walk up to the house and heard glass break before Myers returned and told the driver to go, DiPietro said.

According to DiPietro, Myers told the teens, "That was just a warning."

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