Murder, Kidnapping, Child Pornography Lead To Prison Sentences

Also: Middletown man indicted on more than 30 charges in home improvement fraud case

A 26-year-old man was sentenced to 20 years in prison for fatally shooting 29-year-old Brandon Ryans in Wilmington in July 2015. Deputy Attorneys General Barzilai Axelrod and Periann Doko secured the sentence for Lamere Wilmer-Williamson, after he pled guilty to Murder in the Second Degree in January. Wilmer-Williamson shot the victim on the corner of South Dupont Street and Lancaster Avenue in Wilmington. Det. Randall Nowell of the Wilmington Police Department led the investigation and was able to obtain area surveillance cameras and cooperating witnesses that helped identify Wilmer-Williamson as the gunman. The defendant was sentenced by a Superior Court judge to 20 years in prison, followed by 6 months of either home confinement or work release, then 2 years of probation.

Deputy Attorney General Christina Kontis secured a prison sentence for 35-year-old Joseph Rudge of Wilmington for Attempted Kidnapping Second Degree, Burglary Third Degree, and Failure to Re-register as a Sex Offender. In July 2016, Rudge grabbed a woman by the neck and held wet rag over her face in the entrance of her apartment building in the 300 block of East Main Street in Newark. The victim was able to free herself and scream for help, causing Rudge to run. While investigating the attempted kidnapping, a police officer saw Rudge rummaging through a car in the parking lot. Rudge was sentenced as a habitual offender in Superior Court on the Attempted Kidnapping charge to 15 years in prison, followed by 6 months of either work release or home confinement then 18 months of probation for the other charges.

A 40-year-old Newark man will spend 8 years in prison as a result of his guilty plea to child pornography charges. Deputy Attorney General Periann Doko secured the sentence for Jason Wood, who pled guilty in December 2016 to 2 counts of Dealing in Child Pornography, and 1 count of Sex Offender Unlawful Sexual Conduct Against a Child. In early 2016, an electronic cloud storage company notified the Delaware Child Predator Task Force that Wood uploaded images containing child pornography to his cloud storage account. Wood was sentenced by a Superior Court judge to 8 years in prison, followed by 6 months of either home confinement or work release, then 5 years of probation. Wood, who was already registered as a Tier 2 sex offender, must now register as a Tier 3 sex offender.

Deputy Attorney General John Taylor secured a guilty plea from a 40-year-old Arthur Torres of Wilmington for drug and weapons charges. Torres, a habitual offender, pled guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited and Drug Possession. In August 2016, officers executing a search warrant at Torres’ home in the 900 block of East 17th Street saw Torres throw a gun from a bedroom window. During the search, police found a loaded .38 caliber revolver as well as drugs and drug paraphernalia. Torres, a habitual offender and prohibited from having a gun because of previous felony convictions, faces a minimum mandatory of 15 years when sentenced in Superior Court later this year.

A New Castle County Grand Jury returned a 34-count indictment against a Middletown man for a series of crimes related to his home improvement business. Mario Mareno, 50, faces 1 count of Racketeering, one count of Crime Against a Vulnerable Adult, 17 counts of Theft, and 15 counts of Home Improvement Fraud. The First State Fugitive Task Force arrested Mareno in May 2016 on four outstanding warrants for Home Improvement Fraud from the Delaware State Police, the New Castle County Police, and the Middletown Police Department. The new indictment consolidated charges against Mareno from Kent and Sussex counties into a single case in New Castle County, and added the Racketeering charge. Mareno posted bail, and was arrested on a fugitive warrant in North Carolina last September. Mareno is being held at the Howard Young Correctional Institution on lack of $171,500 cash bail. Details on Mareno’s 2016 arrest are available at: