A remorseful Deon Thornton was sentenced today to seven and a half years in prison for the stabbing death of his brother, Derrick Thornton, in Adams Morgan in February.
Judge Gerald Fisher, who imposed the minimum sentence for the voluntary manslaughter charge, said that he had searched for ways to make the sentence less strict, but that there was nothing that would allow him to sentence Deon Thornton to less than the 90 months described in sentencing guidelines.
“We have a lot of cases that come before us that are indeed very tragic. But I can think of none more tragic than this,” Fisher said in announcing his decision. “I know Deon Thornton will suffer for this for the rest of his life.”
Thornton pleaded guilty 11 days after being presented with the charge and declined to review the evidence against him. In court he said that the government’s belief that he stabbed his brother after they had been drinking and had an argument was correct.
Reading from a handwritten letter Friday, Deon Thornton apologized to his family: his grandmother, his daughter, his niece and sister-in-law, among other family members.
“I’m so so sorry,” he said. “I’m missing my only best friend, Derrick. I spend nights crying about my brother.”
A man found dead in Adams Morgan mid-day Easter Sunday has been identified by police as Santos Jobel Martinez Umansor, a 23-year-old Northwest D.C. man. He is believed to have been a victim of blunt force trauma.
No arrests have been made in the case.
MPD’s press release is after the jump.
An unidentified man was found dead Sunday afternoon in the 2300 block of Ontario Road NW. Police said he appeared to have died after experiencing blunt force trauama to his head and body.
MPD’s press release is below.
( Washington, DC) – Detectives assigned to the Metropolitan Police Department’s Homicide Branch are investigating a homicide in the 2300 block of Ontario Road, NW.
On Sunday, April 24, 2011 at approximately 1:55 pm, members of the Third District responded to the 2400 block of 17th Street, NW for a man down. Upon arrival on scene, they discovered an unidentified male in the 2300 block of Ontario Road, NW suffering from trauma to the head and body. Personnel from DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services responded to the scene and determined the victim had no signs of life. The victim was later pronounced dead by a member of the Office of Chief Medical Examiner.
Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the police at (202) 727-9099 or 1-888-919-CRIME (1-888-919-2746).
Updated with a copy of the plea agreement at 4:27 p.m.
Deon Thornton pleaded guilty this morning to fatally stabbing his older brother in the lobby of an Adams Morgan apartment building earlier this month.
Thornton, 21, was due in court today for a preliminary hearing in the case. Instead he agreed to plea guilty to voluntary manslaughter while armed, a charge that could earn him up to thirty years in prison.
A fight between brothers on Friday night left one man dead in Adams Morgan and another behind bars at D.C. Jail.
Metro Police said Saturday morning that 22-year-old Derrick Phillip Thornton, Jr. died Friday night at a local hospital after being stabbed in the 2200 block of Champlain Street, NW, where he lived.
Deon Eugene Thornton, 21, of Northwest, DC, was arrested and charged with second-degree murder in Derrick Thornton Jr.’s death.
A message from Councilman Jim Grahamon the Adams Morgan Listserve Saturday morning indicated that the men were brothers and Metro Police stated that the stabbing was “domestic in nature.”
Metro PD’s press release follows after the jump.