Charges dropped in Seaford abduction case

GEORGETOWN — Intertwined cases in connection with the March 2013 abduction of a then 89-year-old Lincoln woman were resolved further last week when charges were dropped against a Bridgeville man associated with it.

Sussex County Superior Court affirmed a motion to end prosecution of Phillip L. Brewer. That motion followed the dismissed case against Rondaiges A. Harper in December 2015 after a Supreme Court ruling involving double jeopardy.

On Aug. 13, 2015, Mr. Harper’s kidnapping conviction was overturned in Supreme Court because he was found not involved in a carjacking that preceded it, according to papers.

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Pictured, clockwise from upper left, are Phillip L. Brewer, Rondaiges A. Harper, Jackeline H. Perez, and Junia McDonald. (Submitted photos/Delaware State Police)

Also, the Supreme Court ruled there was insufficient evidence to support two conspiracy counts as well.

A Sussex County Superior Court Judge approved Mr. Harper’s motion dismiss his case on Dec. 17, 2015.

Superior Court followed suit with Mr. Brewer on Jan. 20 after a motion to dismiss from the defendant. Mr. Harper and Mr. Brewer were both 17 at the time of their arrests in March 2013.

“In light of the Superior Court’s decision in the case of Rondaiges Harper, and our acknowledgment of Mr. Brewer’s cooperation, we felt the appropriate decision was to drop the charges against Mr. Brewer,” said Delaware Department of Justice spokesman Carl Kanefsky.

Also, the Department of Justice said that, “(t)he victim’s family is in agreement that Brewer should not be sitting in jail if Harper is going to walk away from all charges. They believe the fact that he cooperated and did the right thing should be acknowledged.”

Mr. Brewer’s cooperation was not supported everywhere, his lawyer Andre Beauregard said.

“We are now seeking protective relocation as a result of threats against him and his family,” he added.

Still, though, Mr. Brewer was “totally elated” when learning of the dropped case against him last week, Mr. Beauregard said.

“I looked at it as he got a second chance in life,” Mr. Beauregard said.

A tenacious approach in filing motions was needed to secure the dropped charges, Mr. Beauregard said.

“I believe the boys made extremely poor choices, but those choices were determined by the Supreme Court not to involve criminality,” Mr. Beauregard said.

Mr. Beauregard said Mr. Brewer served three years and a month of prison time due to a prior robbery charge.

On Oct. 26, 2015, in Sussex County Superior Court, Mr. Brewer was indicted on first-degree unlawful imprisonment and second-degree conspiracy counts. On Oct. 13, 2015, Superior Court acknowledged receiving a motion from Mr. Beauregard to withdraw Mr. Brewer’s guilty plea.

On April 8, 2013, Mr. Brewer was indicted for alleged first-degree carjacking, second-degree conspiracy (two counts), and first-degree kidnapping. On Dec. 19, 2014, according to papers, he pleaded guilty of second-degree kidnapping, second-degree carjacking, and second-degree conspiracy, and violation of probation, court documents showed.

Mr. Brewer received a 12-year sentence for the criminal charges and probation violation.

On Oct. 13, 2015, Superior Court acknowledged receiving a motion from Mr. Beauregard to withdraw Mr. Brewer’s guilty plea.

Milford residents held

Milford residents Jackeline H. Perez and Junia McDonald are incarcerated after each pleading guilty to carjacking, kidnapping and conspiracy in 2014, officials said. Perez was 15 at the time of the alleged incident, police said, and McDonald was 14.

In May 2013, receiving stolen property and conspiracy charges were dropped against Bridgeville resident Deniaya Smith, 15 at the time of the alleged incident, according to the Department of Justice.

When announcing the arrests of five juveniles in 2013, the Delaware State Police said an elderly woman was located wandering around a cemetery on Calvary Road off King Road east of Seaford on March 20, 2013. The woman had been reported missing by her family the day before, according to authorities.

Police said the woman was confused and suffering from exposure at the time she was located, and was taken to Nanticoke Memorial Hospital in Seaford where she was treated and released.

According to police, investigation found that two females approached the elderly woman at the Chicken Man Convenience Store in Milford, and then forced into her own vehicle’s trunk as her keys were stolen.

Police said the elderly woman was dropped off at the cemetery after being held in the vehicle for almost two days.

Reach staff writer Craig Anderson at canderson@newszap.com

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