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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, August 29, 2014

District Man Sentenced To 12 Years In Prison For Attacking Co-Worker With Sledgehammer At Auto Body ShopDefendant Struck Victim Several Times In The Head

     WASHINGTON – Abdul Ewumi, 39, of Washington, D.C., was sentenced today to a 12-year prison term for attacking a co-worker with a sledgehammer last year at an auto body shop in Northeast Washington, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced.

     Ewumi was found guilty by a jury in July 2014, following a trial in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, of assault with intent to kill while armed, aggravated assault while armed, and related offenses. He was sentenced by the Honorable William M. Jackson. Upon completion of his prison term, Ewumi will be placed on five years of supervised release.

     According to the government’s evidence, the victim and Ewumi worked in early 2013 as mechanics at an auto body shop on Benning Road NE. At Ewumi’s request, the victim repaired the transmission on a car. The owner of the car later returned the vehicle to Ewumi, complaining that, although the transmission was working properly, the heating system no longer worked.

     On April 1, 2013, Ewumi confronted the victim about the heating system issue. The victim denied responsibility. Ewumi became enraged, grabbed the victim by his head, pulled him across the exposed engine of a car the victim was working on, and began punching him in the back of the head. The shop manager, who was working in a nearby office, heard the commotion and intervened by separating the men.

     Ewumi nevertheless continued to threaten the victim. In an effort to dissuade Ewumi from antagonizing him, the victim threw a screwdriver across the garage, further enraging the defendant. Ewumi then retrieved his hand-held sledgehammer from his toolbox and ran towards the victim, shouting, “I’m gonna’ kill you!” Ewumi struck the victim in the head four to five times, leaving him with cuts to his head, a broken bone in his face, and more than $50,000 in medical bills. Another mechanic who was working outside the shop heard the second assault and intervened. The police arrived shortly thereafter and arrested the defendant.

     In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Machen praised the work of the detectives and officers who investigated the case for the Metropolitan Police Department. He also acknowledged the efforts of those who worked on the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Specialists Richard Cheatham and Antoinette Sakamsa. Finally, U.S. Attorney Machen acknowledged the efforts of Assistant U.S. Attorney Ben Schrader, who investigated and prosecuted the case.

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Updated February 19, 2015