Two sentenced for assault

November 03, 2000

Two sentenced for assault

By MARLO BARNHART / Staff Writer

Two Hagerstown men pleaded guilty Thursday to a June 29 assault and agreed to testify against a third man when he appears for trial.

John Austin Perkins III and Robert Michael Smith, both 20, and formerly of the first block of East Franklin Street, each pleaded guilty in Washington County Circuit Court to one count of second-degree assault.

Perkins was sentenced by Washington County Circuit Judge Donald Beachley to three years in prison with all but one year in the Washington County Detention Center suspended.

Probation was set at 18 months and work release was authorized.

Smith was given the same sentence and was ordered to attend the Jail Substance Abuse Program.

First-degree assault charges against both were dropped in exchange for the pleas.

On June 29, at 3 a.m., Hagerstown City Police were called to the 200 block of East Franklin Street where they found Walter Jordan down on the sidewalk and bleeding from the head.


Assistant Washington County State's Attorney Duane Gigeous said Jordan told police he had been in the area of 271/2 E. Franklin St. when he got into an argument with an apartment dweller.

That argument stemmed from the fact that Jordan was urinating on the door of Perkins' apartment, Gigeous said.

Jordan said he left but came back later and was struck by several men, Gigeous said. One of those men hit him with a piece of lumber.

Officer John Murray later located three suspects in the assault, Gigeous said. Perkins admitted his participation, implicating Smith and the third man.

"I apologize .... I didn't mean for this to happen," Perkins said.

He said he has been working hard to support his wife and child.

"There were alternatives ... you could have called police," Beachley said.

Beachley reserved ruling on how $1,500 in unpaid hospital expenses for Jordan's recovery would be split up.

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