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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Columbia

Thursday, February 27, 2014

District Man Found Guilty Of Murder Charges In 2008 Shooting That Killed Two People-Targeted One Victim In Dispute; Other Was Innocent Bystander-

     WASHINGTON – Arvel Crawford, 23, of Washington, D.C., has been found guilty by a jury of first-degree murder, second-degree murder, and related weapons charges for the slayings of two people in 2008, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced today.

     Crawford was found guilty of the charges on Feb. 24, 2013, following a trial in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. The Honorable Jennifer Anderson scheduled sentencing for May 16, 2014. Crawford faces a potential sentence of life in prison.

     At trial, the government’s evidence established that on Aug. 14, 2008, at about 10 a.m., Crawford snuck up on Johnquan Wright, 18, in front of a building in the unit block of K Street NW and shot him multiple times in the back.  One of the shots went through Mr. Wright and hit Nolan Cooper, 61, an innocent bystander.  In the months preceding the murders, a dispute had arisen between two groups of young men in the Sursum Corda neighborhood, leading to multiple homicides. Crawford and Mr. Wright were on opposite sides of this dispute.   

     In a separate case, Crawford is serving an 18-year prison sentence for killing his father on Dec. 1, 2009 in a robbery conspiracy gone awry.

     In announcing the verdict, U.S. Attorney Machen commended the work of the detectives, officers, and evidence technicians who investigated the case for the Metropolitan Police Department. He also expressed appreciation for the efforts of those who handled the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Specialists Meridith McGarrity and Kwasi Fields; Victim/Witness Advocate Tamara Ince; Intelligence Specialist Zachary McMenamin, and Litigation Technology Specialists Anisha Bhatia and Paul Howell.       

     Finally, he acknowledged the work of Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura Bach, who investigated the case, and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Magdalena Acevedo and Glenn Kirschner, who prosecuted the case at trial.


Updated February 19, 2015