Smyrna man sentenced to 46 years for kidnapping, gun convictions

Anthony Jones

DOVER — The Delaware Department of Justice announced several recent Superior Court sentencings, including:

• A Smyrna man convicted of several charges in connection to his firing a gun and damaging a car while looking for his ex-girlfriend was sentenced to more than 40 years in prison.

In September 2018, the DOJ said, Anthony Jones kidnapped two persons at gunpoint and took them to a home in Marydel looking for a woman he was once in a relationship with. When Jones didn’t find her, he fired a shot that struck her camper.

The DOJ said Jones then traveled to Felton, and unlawfully entered the woman’s home, and when he realized she was not there, he ordered one of the kidnapped victims to smash the windows and slash the tires of a car in the driveway. Jones was arrested a short time late after a traffic stop during which police for a loaded .45 caliber gun in the car.

In March 2019, a Superior Court jury convicted Jones of six counts of possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony, first-degree reckless endangering, two counts of aggravated menacing, second-degree conspiracy, two counts of criminal mischief, two counts of second-degree kidnapping, second-degree burglary, and coercion.

Following that conviction, a judge found Jones guilty of possession of a firearm by a person prohibited and possession of ammunition by a person prohibited in a bench trial.

The judge sentenced Jones, barred from having a gun because of previous drug convictions, to 46 years in prison, followed by one year of work release then one year of probation.

Deputy Attorney General Lindsay Taylor prosecuted the case with assistance from social worker Esther Powell. Detective Ryan Wright with the Delaware State Police served as chief investigative officer.

Alex J. Durham

• A Frederica man was sentenced to nine years in prison for his conviction on several weapons charges. Alex Durham, 27, was convicted in a bench trial in February of possession of a firearm by a person prohibited, possession of ammunition by a person prohibited, carrying a concealed deadly weapon, resisting arrest, and tampering with physical evidence.

Durham was arrested after a foot chase with police in May 2018 which began when Durham started to run after he noticed police approaching him on the street, the DOJ said. During the chase, Durham pulled a gun from his waistband. Durham, barred from having a gun because of previous felony convictions on weapons, reckless endangering, and conspiracy charges, was sentenced by a Superior Court judge to nine years in prison, followed by one year of work release then one year of probation.

Deputy Attorney General Lindsay Taylor prosecuted the case.

Andrew A. Ayers

• The DOJ said a 55-year-old Milton man who was a target of a drug investigation in Sussex County last summer was sentenced to prison for drug dealing. Andrew Ayers, 55, pleaded guilty to drug dealing cocaine – Tier 4 and possession of ammunition by person prohibited.

In August 2018, members of the Sussex Drug Unit and the Governor’s Task Force executed a search warrant at Ayers’s home and found a firearm, ammunition, and a large amount of cocaine. A Superior Court judge sentenced Ayers to six years in prison, followed by one year of home confinement then 18 months of probation.

Deputy Attorney General Rebecca Anderson prosecuted the case.

• A 25-year-old Seaford man was sentenced to prison after pleading guilty to abusing his 13-month-old child.

Deputy Attorneys General Nichole Gannett and Michael Tipton secured a guilty plea to first-degree child abuse from Stephen Holston.

In August 2018, a Division of Family Services caseworker received an anonymous tip saying Holston kicked the child. An examination showed the child had a broken leg.

A Superior Court judge sentenced Holston to three years and six months in prison during which he must complete the Key substance abuse treatment program, followed by two years of probation.

DOJ social worker Kerri Hovan and administrative specialist Kelly Maiuri assisted with the case. Detective Takisha Williams-Snipes of the DSP was the chief investigating officer.

Reach the Delaware State News newsroom at newsroom@newszap.com

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