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5 years in Md. student killing

By the Associated Press

A former Frostburg State University student was sentenced Wednesday to five years in prison for fatally shooting a school basketball player and wounding another who had come to his off-campus apartment looking for a fist fight in a dispute instigated by a woman.

Tyrone B. Hall, 21, of Glen Burnie, burst into tears as Allegany County Circuit Judge W. Timothy Finan passed sentence.

Finan likened the case to a Shakespearean tragedy, with a "razor-thin" line between Hall's self-defense claim and the criminal allegations.

The one-time high-school soccer star pleaded guilty Oct. 22 to manslaughter and second-degree assault, abruptly ending jury deliberations in his first-degree murder trial. The plea deal limited Hall's possible prison time to eight years for offenses that carry a combined maximum penalty of 20.

Finan suspended an additional five years of prison time and ordered Hall placed on two years unsupervised probation after his release.

Hall acknowledged in court Wednesday that he used too much force when he fired a 12-gauge shotgun from his front doorstep, killing Brandon M. Carroll, 20, of Waldorf, and wounding Ellis E. Hartridge Jr., 22, of Washington.

"At no time that night did I act out of hate, malice or anger but only out of fear," Hall said. He apologized for his actions and said he prays nightly for the victims' families.

Carroll had driven with Hartridge and another teammate to Hall's apartment early on the morning of April 18. Hartridge testified he wanted to fight Hall because Patrice Britton, a woman whom both had dated, told him that Hall had hit her in the face during a shoving match at a party early that night. Britton's claim wasn't corroborated.

The athletes, followed by Britton and several others, were confronted at the apartment by Hall and four of his friends, all of whom backed up his self-defense claim in their trial testimony.

Hartridge, who is back on the basketball team, said in a statement read in court by his sister Chanel that Carroll had gone to the apartment with no intention of fighting. Hartridge said his friend and teammate had planned to break things up if anyone else jumped in.

Hartridge said that while he was wrong for wanting to fight Hall, "I did not pull the trigger and kill Brandon Carroll. The one who has killed Brandon Carroll is Tyrone Hall."

Judge Finan noted from the bench that Britton set the events in motion by telling Hartridge that Hall had hit her.

Britton, who was in the packed courtroom, occasionally wiped her eyes and nose during the hearing. She declined to comment afterward.

Hartridge's father, Ellis Hartridge Sr., indicated after the hearing that Britton was partly responsible for the tragedy. He called her "the young lady spinning the wheel that gets to walk free."

Carroll's parents said in a written statement to reporters that Hall's prison sentence was too short, amounting to "no more than a 'time-out.'"

"We did not get justice for our son's murder," said Faye Carroll, Brandon's mother.

By the Associated Press  | November 11, 2010; 7:55 AM ET
Categories:  From the Courthouse, Maryland, Schools, Updates  
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Somehow Britton needs to be held accountable for stirring the pot. She's vindictive.

Posted by: jckdoors | November 11, 2010 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Sad case for all involved. I am disturbed that the young lady would lie about being struck by a man only to instigate a fight between the two. So because she wanted the drama one young man is dead the other on his way to prison.

Posted by: Redial1 | November 11, 2010 8:31 AM | Report abuse

Sad case for all involved. I am disturbed that the young lady would lie about being struck by a man only to instigate a fight between the two. So because she wanted the drama one young man is dead the other on his way to prison.

Why did she even show up at the courtroom anyway? It is sad because all of this because of a lie be this female. Females are mostly to blame when something kicks off between friends and total strangers. Hall I believe was scared and only meant to scare the group from doing something to him.

Posted by: PublicEnemy1 | November 11, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Her behavior is not the issue. Its so easy, and shallow for misogynists to try to distort and miss the point and blame women for their own behavior and shot comings! The murderer committed a crime. There is no requirement that anyone commit a crime because their boy friend or girl friend may or may not have told the truth about something.

Posted by: 10bestfan | November 11, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Self defense often results in harm inflicted beyond the minimum force neccesary to repel the attack.

It was a big scene with three athletes and an extra car of followers confronting one person and four others. One of those defending fired two shots from a 12 gauge.

If the man saw the shotgun and did not retreat from the shotgun wielder's property, then the shooter cannot be characterized as dangerously aggressive.

Hall can be a cop when he gets out. Cops get a week off with pay when they shoot someone. Regular citizens get five years in prison.

Posted by: blasmaic | November 11, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

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