Pregnant teen sentenced for role in robbery

October 03, 1997


Staff Writer

A pregnant 18-year-old Hagerstown teenager who admitted driving the getaway car in the armed robbery of a Boonsboro bank last year was handed a five-year prison term - and given a break - at her sentencing Thursday morning.

Washington County Circuit Judge W. Kennedy Boone suspended all but six months of the prison term he handed Tyreese Charlee King, and ordered her to spend that time in the Washington County Detention Center.

Washington County State's Attorney Kenneth Long asked for the five-year sentence. Defense Attorney Ed Button asked that his client be given probation, or allowed to serve her time on weekends.


"I'm ordering the time served at the Washington County Detention Center primarily because you're pregnant," Boone told King. "If you violate this probation, you're going to go to Jessup.

"You got a break here, whether you realize it or not. The detention center is a piece of cake. It's in your community, and your family can visit you."

King lives with her mother on West Bethel Street. She has a 1-year-old child and is five months pregnant.

Boone ordered King placed on two years' supervised probation on her release, and ordered her to get her GED and pay $825 in court costs within a year after she gets out of jail.

King pleaded guilty in July to being an accessory before and after the fact of armed robbery in connection with the robbery of the Boonsboro branch of the Hagerstown Trust Co. on Sept. 13, 1996. The robbery netted more than $5,000.

When police arrested King the same day, they said $250 of that money was found tucked in her bra.

King said in court that she was sorry for what she'd done and was only interested now in caring for her 1-year-old child and getting her life straightened out.

Button said King drove the getaway car out of fear of her cousin, escaped murderer Asa King, who allegedly plotted and carried out the armed heist. Button said Asa King threatened to harm Tyreese King's baby if she didn't cooperate.

Boone, however, said it was his opinion that the young mother cooperated freely with Asa King.

Boone noted that Tyreese King had a juvenile record, and was arrested on drug charges while out on bond for the armed robbery.

King testified in federal court several months ago against Asa King, who she said planned and carried out the robbery.

The jury couldn't reach a verdict in that case. Asa King, who had been on the loose for two years after escaping from Bayside State Prison in New Jersey, was picked up by authorities in the Midwest after the local case was described on the "America's Most Wanted" TV show.

He has been returned to the prison where he is serving the remainder of his 99-year sentence for murder.

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