FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, November 16, 2012
For Information Contact:
District Man Sentenced to 45 Years in Prison On Murder and Other
Charges For Shooting at Group of Unarmed Young Men
- Attack Killed One, Wounded Two Others, Near a Playground in Southeast Washington -
WASHINGTON - Donnell Washington, 28, of Washington, D.C., was sentenced today to 45 years in prison on charges stemming from a shooting near a playground that killed one young man and wounded two others, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced.
Washington was found guilty by a jury in September 2012, following a trial in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, of one count of premeditated first-degree murder while armed, three counts of assault with intent to kill while armed, and related gun charges. He was sentenced by the Honorable Russell F. Canan. Upon completion of his prison term, Washington will be placed on five years of supervised release.
The jury found that early on July 9, 2010, Washington snuck up on the victim, Stanley Dawson, Jr., 19, and three of his friends, in the 3500 block of 19th Street SE. Washington opened fire as the young men socialized near a playground.
Two shots struck Mr. Dawson in his head and back, ultimately killing him. Two bullets struck another victim in the forearm and backside, requiring surgery. A third victim sustained graze wounds to his nose and foot. The fourth victim escaped with no physical injuries.
According to the government’s evidence, the attack stemmed from a dispute five days earlier, during which Mr. Dawson took a gun away from Washington’s best friend, who was firing shots in the air on the Fourth of July at an hour when numerous children were still outside. In the days that followed, Washington hunted for Mr. Dawson, eventually finding him at the playground in the Parkland neighborhood of Southeast Washington.
In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Machen praised the efforts of the law enforcement officers and detectives from the Metropolitan Police Department who worked on the case. U.S. Attorney Machen also expressed appreciation to those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, including Paralegal Meridith McGarrity, who was instrumental in preparing the case for trial; Michael Hailey, Debra Cannon, and Marcia Rinker of the Witness Victim Assistance Unit, who worked with many of the witnesses in the case; Litigation Technology Specialist Leif Hickling, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Glenn L. Kirschner, Kathryn L. Rakoczy, and John Giovannelli, who indicted and tried the case.