Newark Man Pleads to Murder of Local Doctor

A 22-year-old Newark man will face a mandatory sentence of incarceration for the rest of his life after pleading Guilty but Mentally Ill to Murder in the First Degree, and Possession of a Deadly Weapon During the Commission of a Felony. State Prosecutor Kathleen Jennings and Deputy Attorney General Steven Wood secured the plea this morning from Christopher Frick, for the October 2015 killing of his former psychiatrist, Dr. Caroline Ekong. Frick broke into Ekong’s Hockessin home in the middle of the night, and stabbed her numerous times. Frick then went to his parents’ home a few miles away, and, upon his parents’ urging, called 911. Frick was arrested following investigation by the New Castle County Police Department. Frick will be sentenced by Judge Ferris Wharton on the murder and weapon charge in November.

Robert Flippen, 25, of New Castle pled guilty to one count of Drug Dealing Cocaine and one count of Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited. After a traffic stop at the intersection of 4th and Van Buren streets in September 2015, Wilmington Police found crack cocaine, a digital scale, and a gun in a secret compartment near the center console of Flippen’s car. Flippen was immediately sentenced by Superior Court Judge Abigail LeGrow to 10 years in prison, followed by 18 months of probation. Deputy Attorneys General Allison Abessinio, Julie Finocchiaro, and Periann Doko all worked on the case.

Deputy Attorney General Julie Finocchiaro secured a guilty plea from Craig Currington, 27, of Wilmington, to Drug Dealing, Felony Disregarding a Police Signal, and Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited. In March 2016, police on patrol in the area of West 5th and Rodney Streets in Wilmington noticed Currington, who they knew had a suspended driver’s license, operating a pickup truck. When they attempted a traffic stop, Currington sped away, leading officers on a high speed chase through the city. During the chase, Currington threw a loaded .32 caliber revolver from the vehicle and, once caught, was found to be in possession of 138 bags of heroin. Currington was sentenced by Judge Ferris Wharton to 12 years in prison, followed by probation for those charges and his Violation of Probation for drug dealing.

Deputy Attorney General Rebecca Song secured a prison sentence for Shawn Daniels, 38, of Wilmington. As part of a drug investigation in September 2015, police searched a car used by Daniels and found a.45 caliber semi-automatic handgun. Superior Court Judge Jan Jurden declared Daniels a habitual offender, and sentenced him to 13 years in prison for Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited.

Deputy Attorney General Rebecca Song secured a plea to Burglary Second Degree from Madeline Fernadini, 39, of Wilmington. In December 2015, Fernadini and another suspect took numerous items from an apartment in Wilmington. Witnesses noticed the two carrying items out of a window and down a fire escape. Fernadini was sentenced by Judge Abigail LeGrow to 8 years in prison, suspended after four years for one year of probation.