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Teenager gets 18 months for assault

January 22, 1999|By MARLO BARNHART

A Hagerstown teenager who admitted he pointed a rifle at a 43-year-old woman in her home last August was sentenced to serve 18 months in jail Thursday in Washington County Circuit Court.

Darren Elwood Reeder Jr., 17, of 1105 W. Church St., had been charged as an adult with armed robbery, felony theft, first- and second-degree assault.

He pleaded guilty to charges of second-degree assault and felony theft on Thursday.

"When you take a weapon and you assault someone, you go to jail," said Judge Donald Beachley.

Beachley gave Reeder the maximum 10-year sentence for the assault and three years concurrent for the theft. He suspended all but 18 months, to be served in the Washington County Detention Center.

Karen Diane Lichliter told police she was watching television in her 517 Hammond St. home shortly after 2 a.m. on Aug. 18 when a man came in and pointed a rifle at her, demanding money.

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When she told him she wasn't going to give him her money, the man struck her in the head with the rifle butt and took $350 from her purse, police said.

When Hagerstown City Police Officer James Cooper arrived at the home, he found Lichliter bleeding from a head wound.

She was treated at Washington County Hospital and released.

Based on the victim's familiarity with her assailant and her description of him, police found him at the home where he then lived with his grandparents.

"He has been in jail since Aug. 26," said defense attorney Steve Kessell. "He had lived with his grandparents because his father is in prison."

Kessell said the rifle was unloaded but admitted that was little consolation to the victim.

"This has shaken my confidence in myself to provide a safe home for my kids," Lichliter said in court.

Reeder had nothing to say.

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