FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, August 23, 2012
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District Man Sentenced to 80 Years in Prison
For Felony Murder While Armed, Other Charges
In Slayings of Two Men at Northeast Washington Store
- Victims, a Father and Son, Were Shot in Robbery -
WASHINGTON - Christian Taylor, 27, of Washington, D.C., was sentenced today to 80 years in prison on charges stemming from the June 2010 murders of a father and a son at a wholesale store in Northeast Washington, announced U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. and Cathy L. Lanier, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).
Taylor was found guilty in June 2012, following a trial in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, of multiple counts of felony murder while armed, first-degree premeditated murder while armed, armed robbery, and second-degree burglary while armed. He was sentenced by the Honorable Thomas J. Motley.
According to the government’s evidence, the victims - Ming-Kun Chih, 59, and his son, Li Jen Chih, 32 - were working in their store, Lida Wholesale Market, on the afternoon of June 23, 2010, when Taylor entered the establishment. Taylor pointed a handgun at Li Jen Chih, who was working behind the counter, and ordered him to put money into a bag. As the robbery continued, Taylor shot Li Jen Chih as well as his father. He then fled the scene. Li Jen Chih, who suffered multiple gunshot wounds, was pronounced dead at the store. His father was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead several hours later.
The murders were captured by surveillance cameras inside the store in the 1200 block of Fifth Street NE. In addition, a citizen heard shots coming from the area of the store and saw a person flee in a silver Pontiac. The citizen noted the license plate of the car, which was traced to Taylor’s mother. Taylor was arrested six days after the murders and has been in custody ever since.
Taylor also was linked to the crimes through a plastic bag left inside the store. The bag, which was used to hold some of the money, broke while it was in Taylor’s hand. DNA evidence from the handle of the broken bag matched the defendant’s known profile.
“This defendant killed a father and a son who were simply working in their family’s store on a summer afternoon, and terrorized customers during a brazen robbery,” said U.S. Attorney Machen. “The community needs to be protected from violent predators like Christian Taylor, and the sentence today will keep him behind bars for 80 years for this brutal and callous crime.”
“This brazen robbery occurred during business hours and resulted in the loss of two lives,” said Police Chief Lanier. “We put everything we had in finding the person responsible for this tragedy and it is appropriate that he will be held accountable for this senseless and horrific crime.”
In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Machen and Chief Lanier commended the efforts of the detectives, officers and technicians who investigated the case for the Metropolitan Police Department. They also acknowledged the work of those who handled the case at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Assistant U.S. Attorney Adrienne Dedjinou, Victim/Witness Advocate Marcia Rinker, Paralegal Specialists Alesha Matthews-Yette and Meridith McGarrity, and Litigation Technology Specialists Leif Hickling, Ron Royal and Paul Howell. Finally, they thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Deborah Sines and Glenn Kirschner, who investigated and prosecuted the case.