Two More Gang Members Plead Guilty

Other defendants sentenced to prison for drug, rape and burglary charges

A total of 26 members of the Only My Brothers (OMB) gang have now pled guilty to charges included in the 2016 indictment related to the activities of OMB after 2 more members entered pleas and were sentenced in Superior Court. The charges represent the first adult felony convictions for both defendants.

  • Aaron Watson, 17, of Chester, PA pled guilty to Carrying a Concealed Deadly Weapon and Conspiracy Second Degree. A Superior Court judge sentenced Watson to 2 years of probation. Deputy Attorney General Ryan Bounds prosecuted the case.
  • Kyaire Henry, 18, of Wilmington pled guilty to Gang Participation, Conspiracy Second Degree, and Carrying a Concealed Deadly Weapon. A judge sentenced Henry to 1 year in prison, followed by 6 months of either home confinement or work release then 18 months of probation. Deputy Attorney General Mark Denney prosecuted the case against Henry.

A 28-year-old Wilmington man will spend more than 4 years in prison for his role in a money laundering and drug operation. Christian Cortes was a courier in the “Operation Duck Hunt” case that resulted in the seizure of a kilogram of heroin and $130,000. A Superior Court Judge sentenced Cortes for his March 2017 guilty plea to Drug Dealing (Tier 4 Heroin), Money Laundering, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, to a total of 4 years and 90 days in prison, followed by 18 months of probation. Deputy Attorney General Rebecca Anderson prosecuted the case.

A 34-year-old Millsboro man will spend 11 years in prison for the rape of a young child in his care. During the summer of 2016, Gabriel Vargas-Rivera sexually assaulted the child, who was under the age of 12, on numerous occasions. Deputy Attorney General Casey Ewart secured a guilty plea from Vargas-Rivera to 4 counts of Rape Third Degree. A Superior Court judge sentenced Vargas-Rivera to 11 years in prison and the Transitions Sex Offender Treatment Program, followed by 6 months of home confinement, then 10 years of probation. Vargas-Rivera must also register as a Tier III sex offender and have no contact with the victim or anyone under the age of 18.

Deputy Attorney General Matthew Bloom secured a prison sentence for Nicholas Porter, 35, of New Castle, for breaking into multiple cars, stealing one, and then leaving the scene of an accident. In March 2016, Porter broke into multiple cars in the parking lot of the Village of Canterbury Apartments. He stole and crashed one of those cars, a 2006 Chrysler Sebring, into the back of a UPS tractor-trailer on I-95 before fleeing the scene of the accident. In May, a Superior Court jury convicted Porter of several criminal and traffic violations. In June, the court declared Porter a habitual offender based on his prior felony convictions, including a previous burglary. A judge sentenced Porter on two counts of Burglary Third Degree and one count each of Theft of a Motor Vehicle, Driving While Revoked, Careless Driving, and Leaving the Scene of an Accident to 6 years in prison, followed by 6 months of either home confinement or work release, then 18 months of supervised probation.


OMB, TMG Gang Members Plead Guilty To Crimes

Other defendants face prison time on drug, weapons, and rape charges.

A total of 23 members of the Only My Brothers (OMB) gang have now pled guilty to charges included in the 2016 indictment related to the activities of OMB after 3 more members entered pleas and were sentenced in Superior Court. All of the charges represent the first adult felony convictions for all three of the defendants. Deputy Attorneys General Mark Denney, Cynthia Hurlock, and AJ Roop are prosecuting the OMB gang indictment.

  • Shaka Dorsey, 18, of Wilmington pled guilty to Gang Participation, Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited, Assault First Degree. A judge sentenced Dorsey to 3 years in prison, followed by 6 months of either home confinement or work release, then 18 months of probation. Dorsey is prohibited from having a gun because of juvenile adjudications including burglary and conspiracy. Dorsey has a pending rape charge in connection to a 2016 incident.
  • Jovan Martin, 18, of Wilmington pled guilty to Illegal Gang Participation and Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited. Martin, barred from having a gun because of juvenile adjudications for Carrying a Concealed Deadly Weapon and Receiving Stolen Property, was sentenced by a judge to 9 months in prison, followed by 6 months of either home confinement or work release, then one year of probation.
  • Artie Pratt, 19, of Wilmington pled guilty to Illegal Gang Participation and Conspiracy Second Degree. A judge sentenced Pratt to one year of probation.

A member of the Touch Money Gang (TMG) pled guilty in Superior Court to charges related to a shooting in Wilmington. Deputy Attorneys General John Downs, Dan McBride and Periann Doko secured the plea from 21-year-old Aquantay Garner of Newark to Illegal Gang Participation, Assault Second Degree, Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of a Felony, and Reckless Endangering First Degree. In February 2015, Garner walked up to a van parked in the 800 block of Kirkwood Street in Wilmington in which the victim was sitting and fired four shots into the vehicle. Garner will be sentenced by a judge in July.

A 38-year-old Wilmington man will face at least 120 years in prison after being convicted by a Superior Court jury in a drugs and weapons case. Deputy Attorneys General Erika Flaschner and Zachary Rosen won the conviction against Marzette King for Drug Dealing, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, three counts of Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of a Felony, three counts of Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited, and one count of Possession of Ammunition by a Person Prohibited. Acting on a tip in 2016, police executed a search warrant in King’s home in the 200 block of West 22nd Street. Officers found 2 loaded 9mm handguns, a semi-automatic rifle, and over 70 grams of marijuana. Previous violent felony convictions on drug, burglary, and robbery charges make King prohibited from having guns. King faces a minimum mandatory sentence of 120 years when sentenced as a habitual offender later this year.

A 25-year old Wilmington man faces 15 years to life in prison after pleading guilty to a weapons charge in Superior Court. Deputy Attorney General Mark Denney secured the plea from Darry Carter to Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited and Resisting Arrest. Police conducting surveillance due to a high level of gun violence saw Carter showing characteristics of an armed gunman in the 100 block of South Franklin Street in May 2016, before fleeing from police and discarding a loaded firearm on a garage roof near South Harrison Street. Carter faces sentencing in July as a habitual offender, due to previous violent felony convictions on weapons, drug, and assault charges.

Deputy Attorney General Kathleen Dickerson secured a guilty plea and prison sentence for Jerome Jenkins, 34, of Dover to Rape Second Degree and Sexual Abuse of a Child by a Person of Trust First Degree. In December 2016, Jenkins sexually abused a young child in his care. Upon his plea, Jenkins was immediately sentenced to 18 years in prison followed by 2 years of probation.


More Than 30 Years in Prison for Man With Multiple Gun Charges and Resisting Police

Gang Members, Burglar, Child Sex Abuser, Robber Also Sentenced To Jail
 
Ronald Jackson, 39, of New Castle was sentenced following a trial in which he was convicted of a host of weapons related offenses. Deputy Attorneys General Michael DegliObizzi and Nichole Warner convicted Jackson at trial of Aggravated Menacing, 2 counts of Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of a Felony, Reckless Endangering First Degree, Carrying a Concealed Deadly Weapon, Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited, Possession of Ammunition by a Person Prohibited, Resisting Arrest, Criminal Impersonation, and Criminal Mischief. In February 2016, Jackson went to the home of the victim in the 200 block of North Madison Street, threatened to kill him and fired a single shot from a gun in the victim’s direction. Jackson struggled with officers as they attempted to take him into custody and later tried to flee on foot after being treated at Wilmington Hospital. Jackson was sentenced as an habitual criminal offender and is prohibited from possessing a gun because of previous felony convictions. A Superior Court judge sentenced Jackson to a total of 60 years in prison, the first 33 of which are mandatory and unsuspended.

Two members of the Only My Brothers (OMB) gang have pled guilty and been sentenced to charges relating to guns and gang participation, and as a result, are both prohibited for life from owning, possessing or controlling firearms, deadly weapons and ammunition. Deputy Attorney General Mark Denney secured the pleas from Azhe Allen, and Jeremy Tunnel, both 19, of Wilmington. Allen pled guilty to felony charges of Gang Participation, Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of a Felony, Carrying a Concealed Deadly Weapon, Conspiracy Second Degree, and Resisting Arrest. In May 2016, Allen was part of a group of people approached by police at the intersection of 10th and North Pine streets in Wilmington. Allen ran from police, throwing a gun he was holding as he tried to get away, but was taken into custody after a brief chase. Tunnell, also ran from police and was arrested about two months later. Allen was sentenced by a Superior Court judge to 3 years in prison, followed by 6 months of either work release or home confinement, then 18 months of probation. Tunnell pled guilty to felony charges of Gang Participation, Carrying a Concealed Deadly Weapon, Resisting Arrest, and 2 counts of Conspiracy Second Degree, one of which was connected to a previous Robbery charge. Tunnell was sentenced by a Superior Court judge to 10 months in prison, followed by 1 year of Home Confinement and then 18 months of probation. To date, eight individuals have pled guilty to charges included in the 2016 indictment related to the activities of OMB.

A 57-year old Wilmington man was sentenced to a total of 26 years in prison for charges related to a series of burglaries in the Greenville area in 2015. Richard Lewis was declared a habitual offender with a burglary history dating back nearly four decades, after being convicted by a jury in December to Attempted Burglary Second Degree, 2 counts of Burglary Second Degree, Theft over $100,000, Theft From a Senior, 2 counts of Criminal Mischief, and one count of Receiving Stolen Property. Deputy Attorneys General Caterina Gatto and Christina Kontis tried the case along with the detectives from New Castle County Police Department, and Kontis secured the sentence. Lewis attempted to break into the first home by stealing a ladder from neighbor’s residence and propping it up to a second -floor window. A homeowner awoke to the noise and pulled the blinds back to find herself face to face with the defendant, who then fled. Lewis struck two other homes while homeowners were away, entered through a first-floor window in one and using a ladder to enter the second story of another, taking more than $190,000 of property. A Superior Court judge sentenced Lewis as a habitual offender to 24 years for the three burglary charges, and an additional 2 years for the Theft Over $100,000. After the 26-year minimum mandatory prison sentence, Lewis will serve 6 months of either home confinement or work release, then two years of probation.

Deputy Attorney General Jan van Amerongen secured a prison sentence for Anthony Rodriguez, 21, of Clayton, for sexual offenses against three young children. Rodriguez pled guilty in October 2016 to Sexual Solicitation of a Child, and two counts of Sexual Abuse of a Child by a Person in a Position of Trust, Authority or Supervision Second Degree. While working as a teacher at the Kidz Inc. Academy day care in Newark during the summer of 2015, Rodriguez kissed and touched the young children, and requested that one of the children perform a sexual act upon him. A Superior Court judge sentenced Rodriguez to 12 years in prison followed by 6 months of either work release or home confinement, then 2 years of probation. Rodriguez is to have no contact with the victims or their families, and no unsupervised contact with anyone under 18, and must also register as a Tier III sex offender.

Deputy Attorney General Lindsay Taylor obtained a prison sentence for a 52-year-old Dover man who pled guilty in connection with two Kent County robberies. In early December 2015, Alfred Robinson held up the Valero station on South Dupont Highway in Camden, and later the same month, robbed the Waffle House restaurant, also on South Dupont Highway in Camden. In both incidents, Robinson wore a mask and displayed an air gun. Robinson pled guilty in December 2016 to Robbery First Degree and Aggravated Menacing and was sentenced by a Superior Court judge to 8 years in prison, followed by 1 year of work release, then 1 year of probation.


State Auditor R. Thomas Wagner, Jr. releases the Sustainable Energy Utility, Inc. Inspection report.

January 12, 2016

Dover, Del. – State Auditor R. Thomas Wagner, Jr.’s Office performed an inspection of the Sustainable Energy Utility, Inc. (SEU) and its relationship to the State.

All State agreements related to the SEU energy conservation measures projects ensured that the State was obligated to pay into the future without a process to measure actual energy savings or ensure that annual energy savings analyses provided by the contractors are thorough and accurate. The State also failed to include the standard funding out clause used to protect the State from over-obligating when future availability of State funds is unknown. These funding out clauses are ordinarily required by all other State contracts.

In 2011, the SEU issued energy efficiency revenue bonds that yielded $67.4 million to finance energy conservation measures for multiple State organizations. Despite representation that the bonds were not backed by the full faith and credit of the State, the bond repayment is exclusively supported by the State’s irreversible long-term payment commitments to the SEU.

“At the conclusion of this inspection I was left asking: ‘How and why was the State’s best interest subordinated to the interest of the SEU and its partners?’” said State Auditor Wagner.

The Legislative Mall Complex project alone utilized more than $4.8 million in SEU bond proceeds for construction and will require more than $8 million in repayments over a 20-year period. According to Moody’s Investors Service, the State’s failure to appropriate any portion of the repayments will cause insufficient funds to be deposited into the SEU’s Bond Fund to pay principal and interest on the bonds when due.

The report further outlines concerns with the energy conservation measures performed, including changing light fixtures and bulbs, installing new heating and cooling units that proved to be unreliable and improperly installed, and reducing water flow on sinks through the installation of faucet aerators that were eventually removed because they proved to soak employees as they washed their hands. Ongoing monitoring of cost savings for the Legislative Mall Complex project is solely based on calculations using manufacturers’ estimates of energy usage and spot measures of installed equipment. Further, the State’s accounting for the energy funding and contractual payments is so complex, the State will never know whether true cost savings is occurring.

In the end, the additional costs related to these projects, including operational disruptions during and after the energy conservation measures, were absorbed by an already overburdened State budget, especially since the State’s Energy Performance Contracting Act required State funding to participating organizations remain the same even if energy savings were achieved through this project.

Additional information about the SEU can be found at: Sustainable Energy Utility, Inc. Inspection

For more information, please contact Kathleen A. Davies, CPA-PA, CISA, CGFM, CGAP, CFE, Chief Administrative Auditor/Deputy, at 302-857-3919 or kathleen.davies@delaware.gov.