Steven Stone Sentenced to over 24 Years in Prison for the Witness Tampering Murder of David Lee
Baltimore, Maryland - U.S. District Judge J. Frederick Motz sentenced Steven Leroy Stone, age 25, of Frederick, Maryland, today to 292 months in prison, followed by five years of supervised release, for conspiracy to commit witness tampering and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime and a crime of violence resulting in death, in connection with the murder of David Lee.
The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Theresa R. Stoop of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; Frederick County Sheriff Charles A. Jenkins; Colonel Terrence Sheridan, Superintendent of the Maryland State Police; and Frederick County State’s Attorney J. Charles Smith.
According to his guilty plea, from 2004 through July 2005, Steven Stone worked with David Lee, Jesse Dorsz, Eric Campbell, then a juvenile, and others to purchase and distribute cocaine, marijuana and MDMA (ecstasy). These drugs were obtained from sources in New York and Maryland. Campbell and the others distributed the drugs in and around Frederick, Maryland, including on Sixth Street. Members of the conspiracy called themselves “B-6,” which stood for “the bottom of Sixth Street” in Frederick. During the period of the conspiracy, Stone was arrested several times with drugs and guns. On one occasion law enforcement also recovered a radio frequency detector that allowed Stone to detect undercover law enforcement agents wearing recording devices.
In the Spring of 2005, Stone and others began to suspect that David Lee was providing information about their drug trafficking and other criminal activities to law enforcement. In June 2005, Lee was served with two federal grand jury subpoenas for his testimony on June 23, 2005 and July 21, 2005. In June or July, Campbell and other conspirators learned that Lee had received a subpoena, reinforcing their concern that Lee was cooperating with law enforcement agents against them.
In June or July 2005, Stone, concerned that Lee was going to testify against him, offered several people money to kill Lee. In addition, Stone developed a plan to burn down Lee’s home, and purchased gasoline for use in doing that. However, the plan fell through while Stone and others were en route to Lee’s home.
On the afternoon of July 7, 2005, Stone drove to New York City with several other individuals to purchase drugs. At about that time, members of the conspiracy agreed that Lee should be killed while Stone was in New York. According to Stone’s plea agreement, one of the members of the conspiracy told Stone that on the evening of July 7th, the conspirators arranged for Lee to get into a car with some of them in order to carry out his murder.
Stone admits that his co-conspirators killed Lee as part of the existing plan by Stone to do so, and that Stone knew that the murder would take place.
Immediately after the shooting, a conspirator spoke to Steven Stone’s father, Chester Stone, over the phone, as well as to other members of the conspiracy. During the calls, they agreed that Chester Stone would retrieve the gun used to shoot Lee and dispose of it. Early on the morning of July 8th, Chester Stone arrived at the conspirator’s residence and retrieved the gun from Campbell. Chester Stone left and disposed of the gun.
After Steven Stone returned from New York on the afternoon of July 8th, he had several conversations with individuals who had information about the murder. Stone suggested stories for them to tell law enforcement officers if questioned, and threatened them if they cooperated against him.
Co-conspirator Eric Lee Campbell, age 20, of Frederick, Maryland, was sentenced to 135 months in prison followed by five years of supervised release for conspiracy to commit witness tampering by homicide. Steven Stone’s father, Chester Stone, age 44, of Frederick, Maryland, was sentenced to 63 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for being an accessory after the fact to witness tampering by homicide. Jesse Dorsz, age 28, of Walkersville, Maryland, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute controlled substances and use of a gun in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison on the drug conspiracy offense and a maximum of life in prison on the gun offense. No sentencing date is currently scheduled.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended Assistant United States Attorney John W. Sippel, who prosecuted the case.