Man sentenced in violent assault case against former partner

Press Release, Charles County States Attorneys Office

LA PLATA, MD—Tony Covington, State’s Attorney for Charles County, announced that on Monday, December 17, 2018, Charles County Circuit Court Judge Donine M. Carrington sentenced Allen Jerome Prue, 31, to 18 months in jail for Second-Degree Assault and 5 years of supervised probation upon release from jail.

On Wednesday, October 3, 2018, Prue was tried before a Charles County jury for First-Degree Assault, Burglary and other related charges. The jury found him guilty of Second-Degree Assault and Reckless Endangerment.

At trial, part of the evidence the jury heard was: On April 14, 2018, officers responded to the 6100 block of Sea Lion Place in Waldorf for the report of a possible domestic assault. When officers arrived, they repeatedly knocked on the front door but received no answer. Officers then knocked on the back door of the residence. After knocking on the door numerous times, the victim eventually opened the door slightly. The victim initially told officers that she and her children, who were inside of the residence, were okay and that Prue was not inside the residence. However, she was displaying nonverbal signs that she was under duress. Prue’s vehicle was also outside of the residence. Family members of the victim arrived while the officers were present, and the victim was able to exit the residence with relatives. She then spoke to officers in the parking lot of the neighborhood.

At that time, the victim told the investigating officer that she and Prue were previously involved in a romantic relationship but had ended it long before the day of the assault. During the morning hours of April 14th, Prue broke into the victim’s residence and proceeded to the victim’s bedroom. According to witness testimony, Prue got on top of the victim in her bed and began strangling her, as well as threatening her. Prue then told the victim that she needed to tell him that she loved him, and they would be together. The victim, in fear for her life, said what Prue told her to say. Prue got off the victim and left the room.

When Prue exited the room, the victim was able to retrieve a cell phone and text her family to alert them she needed help. One of her family members called the police after receiving the text. When officers began knocking on the front door, Prue told the victim not to answer it. When they started knocking on the back door, he told the victim to make them go away. Prue was hiding behind the door and victim, out of the officers’ sight, when the victim initially interacted with officers. Prue was apprehended by officers at the residence that same day.

At sentencing, a pre-sentence investigation conducted, pursuant to the Court’s order, was revealed. The investigation into Prue’s background showed that he had a major criminal record and that he had previously violated his parole/probation in other unrelated cases.

The defendant’s Maryland Sentencing Guidelines were 18 months to 5 years. The guidelines are a non-binding guide for Judges. They provide the Court with guidance as to how similarly situated defendants may be sentenced throughout the State. The guidelines are not mandatory: The Court, at its own discretion, may sentence higher or lower than the recommended range.

There was no sentencing agreement between the State, Defendant or the Court. Prue was subject to a maximum sentence of 10 years for the Second-Degree Assault charge and the State and defense were free to argue for any sentence not exceeding 10 years.

During sentencing, the Assistant State’s Attorney prosecuting Prue asked that the Court impose a sentence higher than the guideline’s top range of 5 years. In so doing, she explained to the Court that the defendant planned and fully pre-meditated his crime. The victim was in terror for over an hour trying to do and say whatever necessary to make sure her and her children lived through the night. But for her family alerting the police, there is no telling if we were going to have yet another episode of a jilted man killing his former partner. These situations cannot be taken lightly. A sentence within the guidelines simply would not punish the defendant for his actions and certainly would not send a message that abusing women will not be tolerated. Based on the heinous and vicious nature of the crime, the State reiterated that only a sentence above the guidelines would be fair and just.

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