Laurel Man Who Killed Broadneck High School Student Sentenced Today

For Immediate Release: November 30, 2016

Annapolis, MD -- Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Wes Adams announced today that Ryan Surgeon, 20, of Laurel, was sentenced by Circuit Court Judge Michele D. Jaklitsch to eight years in prison, with seven years of back up time and the first five years without the possibility of parole, for the shooting death of Broadneck high school student Kymici Brown in June of this year. Surgeon pled guilty to manslaughter and the use of a firearm in the commission of a felony. He was on probation for another case in Prince George's County at the time of the incident.

"What a tragic loss for this promising Broadneck high school student - a loss that could have been prevented. Instead, Mr. Surgeon recklessly cut her life short," said Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Wes Adams. "I appreciate Judge Jaklitsch for accepting the State's recommendation in this case to hold Mr. Surgeon accountable."

On June 6, 2016 Annapolis Police responded to a report of a person shot on Tyler Avenue in Annapolis where they found Ms. Brown with a gunshot wound to the chest. She later died of her injuries at an area hospital. Surgeon described himself as Ms. Brown's boyfriend and later said he was dancing around with the gun after smoking marijuana and as he attempted to de-cock the hammer, the gun went off and struck Ms. Brown.

"The law states that this man should never have had a gun due to his criminal history, let alone his age," continued Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Wes Adams. "We have to change the mindset of our teens who think that guns are the answer. They are not."

Surgeon was sentenced 15 years suspend all but 8 years, the first 5 years without parole, and five years of supervised probation.

Deputy State's Attorney Claude deVastey Jones and Assistant State's Attorney Samantha Mildenberg prosecuted the case on behalf of the State. Judge Michele D. Jaklitsch presided over the case.

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Annapolis Man Sentenced 20 Years for Dealing Heroin

For Immediate Release: November 22, 2016

Annapolis, MD -- Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Wes Adams announced today that Vernon Kilroy Johnson, 23, of Annapolis, was sentenced by Circuit Court Judge William C. Mulford to 20 years in prison for possession with intent to distribute heroin and possession of heroin last Friday. Johnson was found guilty by jury in January 2016.

"This dealer hadn't been out a month and he was already dealing again," said Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Wes Adams. "I want to thank the hardworking Annapolis Police officers for their intelligent and diligent work that allowed us to prosecute this case. This is the type of impact sentence that my prosecutors work for everyday. I would also like to thank Judge Mulford for the strong sentence as our community continues to send the message that we will not tolerate heroin on our streets."

On the afternoon of June 22, 2015, Annapolis Police responded to a report that the occupants of a Honda were selling drugs outside of Pizza Boli's on Fairfax Road in Annapolis. Officers located the vehicle, and while following behind, saw a package thrown from the passenger side of the car. Officers retrieved the package and discovered 10.8 grams of heroin packaged for street level sales and distribution. They also observed similar empty packaging in plain sight on the dashboard of the vehicle and located a digital scale, an item that is often used to measure and package heroin into smaller quantities.

Johnson had prior convictions for possession with the intent to distribute nearly 100 grams of heroin and distribution of heroin. He had just been released from the Anne Arundel County Detention Center just 20 days earlier on June 2, 2015.

Assistant State's Attorney Marot Hoskins prosecuted the case on behalf of the State. Judge William C. Mulford presided over the case.

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Anne Arundel County Man Convicted of Animal Cruelty

For Immediate Release: November 17, 2016

Annapolis, MD -- Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Wes Adams announced today that Jerry Tanner, 35, of Columbia, MD, was convicted by jury of animal cruelty. Circuit Court Judge Stacy W. McCormack sentenced Tanner to Probation Before Judgement and 5 years of probation, with the condition that Tanner cannot own a dog nor be in the care and custody of a dog for 3 years.

"My office will prosecute those that harm animals, including animal cruelty or violence of any kind," said Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Wes Adams. "If you are unable to properly care for an animal, then you should not have an animal."

On November 29, 2014, officers responded to a home in Odenton to check the conditions of a dog in the rear yard. Officers heard barking from inside the home, but found a red pit bull, named Gucci, emaciated, still chained, and deceased in her dog house. Police then executed a warrant to enter the home and found additional dogs, including a dog named Zulu, who was covered in urine and feces, dehydrated, emaciated, and in need of medical treatment. Tanner was convicted on two counts of animal cruelty for the failure to provide food to his two dogs.

A necropsy revealed that one of the dogs found by police, Gucci, died at 28 lbs, which was only 50% of her healthy body weight. A second dog, Zulu, was also underweight. Zulu has been placed in a new home.

Assistant State's Attorney Kathryn Humphrey prosecuted the case on behalf of the State. Circuit Court Judge Stacy W. McCormack presided over the case.

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Edgewater Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Domestic Violence

For Immediate Release: November 15, 2016

Annapolis, MD -- Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Wes Adams announced today that Nick Bennett, 57, of Edgewater, was sentenced to the maximum prison time of 10 years for Second Degree Assault after viciously attacking his girlfriend. Bennett has multiple prior convictions for other assaults on various women and a law enforcement officer. In addition, Bennett was convicted for violating a protective order.

"My office has a zero-tolerance for domestic violence. Given that this case was particularly egregious, I am very happy for the victim and for our community that Judge Kiessling handed down the maximum sentence," said Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Wes Adams. "This defendant has been assaulting women since 1986 and I am proud that our office was able to finally end this defendant's continued violence."

During this particular incident, Bennett threw the victim on the floor, held her down with his hands around her neck, and grabbed her hair as he slammed her head against the floor multiple times. The victim was able to escape the defendant and ran upstairs, where she called 911.

As Judge Kiessling handed down her sentence, she stated, "There is a reason for maximum periods of incarceration and you are it, sir."

Assistant State's Attorney Mary Setzer prosecuted the case on behalf of the State. Circuit Court Judge Laura S. Kiessling presided over the case.

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