FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
AUSA VICKIE E. LEDUC or
MARCIA MURPHY at 410-209-4885
NOVEMBER 2, 2007
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEW JERSEY MAN SENTENCED TO OVER 34 YEARS FOR
WITNESS RETALIATION AND GUN OFFENSES
Baltimore, Maryland - U.S. District Judge Marvin J. Garbis sentenced Van Cleve Ashley, age 38, of New Jersey, today to 412 months in prison followed by five years of supervised release for conspiracy to tamper with a witness, conspiracy to retaliate against a witness and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence, announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein.
According to testimony presented at trial, on February 24, 2002, Ashley conspired with Fred Caruso and Ramaine York, both from New Jersey, to shoot to death Thomas D. Dixon, Jr. to prevent Dixon from appearing as a witness in the federal case of U.S. v. Fred Caruso and to retaliate against Dixon for providing law enforcement officers with information about Caruso’s criminal activities. Caruso provided Ashley with a semi-automatic pistol, a photograph of Dixon and directions to Dixon’s house. Caruso paid Ashley $10,000. Ashley then solicited the help of York, providing him with the gun and directions to Dixon’s house. York traveled from New Jersey to Maryland and shot Dixon multiple times. Dixon was flown to shock trauma where he remained hospitalized for months, but survived the attack.
Both Caruso and York had previously pled guilty to witness retaliation and testified at trial against Ashley. Judge Garbis sentenced Caruso to 163 months. York was sentenced in federal court in New Jersey to 10 years.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Baltimore County Police Department for their investigative work. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Romano, who prosecuted the case.