FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
For Information Contact:
Man Pleads Guilty to First-Degree Murder While Armed
In Killing of 13-Year-Old Daughter
-Defendant Also Pleads Guilty to Wounding Two Others-
WASHINGTON - Robert Carter, 41, of Washington, D.C., pled guilty today to first-degree murder while armed and other charges stemming from the killing of his 13-year-old daughter and the wounding of two others, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced.
Carter also pled guilty to two counts of assault with intent to kill while armed. He entered the guilty pleas in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. The Honorable Thomas J. Motley scheduled sentencing for Jan. 11, 2013. Carter faces a potential sentence of up to 60 years in prison on the murder charge, with a mandatory minimum of 30 years. He also faces up to 30 years in prison on each of the counts of assault with intent to kill while armed.
According to the government’s evidence, Carter and his then-girlfriend were estranged and he was no longer living with her and the family at the time of the murder. On Oct. 29, 2010, he was at their home in the 500 block of Madison Street NW, alone there for several hours. That afternoon, he went to a store and purchased a Halloween mask and a pair of work gloves. When he returned, he took his daughter, Angel Morse, to the basement. He shot the teenager once in the head. The Halloween mask was later found on the floor, next to the girl, and the gloves were found elsewhere in the house, with her blood on them.
Later that afternoon, several family members and acquaintances began returning to the home. Carter held them against their will, including two boys, 6 and 10, and a 16-year-old girl, who he forced to sit on a couch. At one point, Carter told the 16-year-old that Angel was in the basement and that he had killed her. When his then-girlfriend returned home, Carter went to the front door, opened it, and pointed a gun at her. The 10-year-old boy jumped up from a couch and lunged at Carter, striking his arm as he began to fire the gun. Carter fired the gun several times, hitting his then-girlfriend once in the abdomen and the 10-year-old once in the leg.
After shooting the gun several more times, Carter stole a friend’s car and fled. He abandoned the vehicle in order to carjack a MetroAccess sedan, taking control of that car with an 84-year-old passenger inside. That passenger was eventually released unharmed. Carter led local police officers on a chase into Prince George’s County, where he crashed the MetroAccess car into a building in Capitol Heights. He has been in custody since his arrest after the crash, and was scheduled to go to trial on murder and other charges next month.
In announcing the plea, U.S. Attorney Machen praised the work of the detectives, officers and crime scene technicians who investigated the case from the Metropolitan Police Department. He also commended the efforts of those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegals Phaylyn Hunt, Sandra Lane, and Alesha Matthews Yette, Victim Advocate Marcy Rinker, Witness Security Specialist Debra Cannon, Information Technology Specialist Leif Hickling, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys David J. Gorman and Erin O. Lyons.12-390