Two Men Plead Guilty to Charges in Shooting of Man in Southeast Washington
Defendants Lured Victim to Site and Attacked Him
WASHINGTON – Harry Pressley, 28, of Washington, D.C., and Jaquan Warren, 29, of New York, N.Y., pled guilty today to charges stemming from the shooting of a man they lured via Facebook and text messages to a location in Southeast Washington, announced U.S. Attorney Jessie K. Liu and Peter Newsham, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).
Both defendants pled guilty to charges of aggravated assault while armed and obstruction of justice. Pressley also pled guilty to a firearms charge in a separate case. The pleas, which are subject to the Court’s approval, call for Pressley to be sentenced to an agreed-upon range of 10 to 15 years in prison and for Warren to be sentenced to an agreed-upon term of eight years in prison, with two years of that time to be suspended. The Honorable Danya A. Dayson scheduled sentencing for June 21, 2019. Pressley and Warren remain in custody.
According to the government’s evidence, Pressley and Warren lured the victim to Southeast Washington by posing as a woman on Facebook. Warren borrowed the woman’s phone, which is how they accessed her Facebook account. Starting on Nov. 22, 2016, the two communicated with the victim over Facebook and text messages, using flirtatious language and suggesting the possibility of a late-night sexual encounter. At about 4 a.m. on Nov. 23, 2016, the defendants texted the victim that he should come to the 2600 block of Southern Avenue SE, noting how, “It’ll be worth your time I promise I wouldn’t be texting this late to play babe.”
At about 4:35 a.m., as the victim exited a park near the intersection of 23rd Street and Savannah Terrace Street SE, he noticed a man dressed in all black emerge from a van. The man – who wore a mask that exposed his eyes and nose – extended his arm and shot at the victim from five to 10 feet away. The victim was hit once in the stomach and once in the upper left arm. He survived the attack and later identified Pressley, a childhood friend, as the shooter. The victim suffered serious injuries to his kidney, small intestines, colon, rib case, and left arm.
Warren returned the cellphone hours after the shooting. Two days later, on Nov. 25, 2016, the woman agreed to accompany Warren and Pressley on a short trip to South Carolina. During the trip, Warren asked the woman to take the wheel and she agreed. As she approached the driver’s side, Pressley fired two gunshots into her arm and two in the back. Pressley and Warren then drove off, leaving the woman for dead in the middle of a deserted road in Florence County, S.C., at 3 a.m. A man who happened to be driving by noticed her and called 911. The woman survived the attack.
Pressley was arrested on Nov. 29, 2016, in the District of Columbia. Warren was eventually arrested on May 5, 2017, in New York City. At the time of his arrest, Warren provided a fake ID and alias. Pressley, meanwhile, tried to concoct a false alibi while incarcerated.
Pressley and Warren had faced attempted murder charges in South Carolina, which are to be dismissed as part of the plea agreement in this case.
In the second case, Pressley pled guilty to a firearms offense stemming from his arrest on Sept. 9, 2015, in Southeast Washington by officers who caught him with the weapon.
The shooting case was investigated by the Metropolitan Police Department. Assistance was provided by the Florence County, S.C. Sheriff’s Office, the U.S. Marshals Service, the Delaware State Police, and the Capital Area Regional Fugitive Task Force. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ahmed Baset, with assistance from Florence County, S.C. Assistant Solicitor General Ryan White and Victim/Witness Advocate Jennifer Clark and Intern Andrew Delaplane, both of the U.S. Attorney’s Office.