Calvin Renard Robinson
The phone rang at 6:59 a.m. on a Friday morning, just as 53-year-old Baltimore City wastewater plant technician Calvin Renard Robinson was heading for the shower, court records show. The March 20 call was from 46-year-old Kevin Glasscho, an ex-con now accused in Maryland as the Black Guerilla Family (BGF) prison gang’s heroin broker.
“You wanted a whole dollar or the half?” Glasscho asked. “Uh, it don’t matter,” Robinson answered, adding, “You can bring me the, um—bring it to me in two halves.” When Glasscho explained that it would be less work if he gave Robinson the “whole dollar.” Robinson agreed, and the two planned to meet after Robinson got out of the shower.
At the time, neither man knew that this exchange, and similarly cryptic phone calls this past spring between Robinson and Glasscho, was being recorded by law enforcers, who believed the men were using code to arrange drug deals. But in mid-April, the conversations wound up as part the evidence for two federal criminal conspiracy cases against 25 alleged members of the BGF. The gang is accused of a variety of crimes, including violence, drug-dealing, smuggling contraband, and extortion. Robinson, thanks to the intercepted phone conversations with Glasscho and the resulting surveillance, is charged with buying drugs wholesale from Glasscho.
At his first court appearances in April, Robinson had the unassuming look of the workaday bureaucrat he is, with his clean-shaven head, trimmed mustache, and glasses. Robinson’s defense attorney, Steven Wrobel, had on hand Robinson’s city Department of Public Works (DPW) supervisor, Dorothy Harris, ready to testify in support of letting Robinson go free pending trial. But the judge decided that Robinson, who has drug convictions dating from the early 1990s and was found with two handguns and ammunition when he was arrested April 15 in the BGF take-down (“Guerrilla Warfare,” Mobtown Beat, April 22, 2009), poses too much of a risk to public safety should he leave jail.
In addition to the guns—a Smith & Wesson .357 with six cartridges and a North American Arms .22 with four cartridges—court records show agents took from Robinson’s home three cell phones, a Blackberry mobile device, three sets of keys, and numerous photographs (see the search warrant).
Robinson has owned his North Mount Street home—1102, right across Riggs Avenue from the Baltimore Police Department’s Western District station house—since 2000. Land records show his principal residence is not there, but south by about a dozen or so blocks, at 1223 Hollins St., a half-block west of Hollins Market. Robinson purchased the Hollins Street property in 2008; open for business there is the In and Out Boutique (see In and Out's incorporation papers), the trade name for a clothing shore owned by Robinson's company, Jo-Cal LLC (see Jo-Cal's incorporation papers).
Robinson's In and Out Boutique opened on a block of Hollins Street that has long been known for drug-dealing activity (“Best Open-Air Drug Market,” Mobtown Beat, Sept. 16, 2003). In 2007 it was targeted in a major federal enforcement effort called Operation Smackdown, which closed down a $20,000 per day heroin operation there.Calvin Robinson SSW Return Jo-Cal LLC Incorporation Papers In and Out Boutique Trade Name papers
Among the 25 inmates, ex-offenders, prison employees, and others indicted by a federal grand jury in Maryland in April as part of the Black Guerilla Family (BGF) prison-gang conspiracies ("Guerrilla Warfare," Mobtown Beat, April 22, 2009), Deitra Davenport stands out.
She has no criminal history. She has worked at the same association-management firm for the past 20 years. She is a homeowner and the single mother of two children. The 37-year-old Davenport is the picture of an upstanding citizen. The accusations against the BGF of violence, drug-dealing, and prison smuggling clash with her squeaky-clean profile--a point that Davenport's lawyer, Thomas Saunders, has emphasized in court repeatedly while seeking her conditional release pending trial.
Saunders says that Davenport is a "naïve, innocent party" in the BGF scheme. He says she was ensnared in a web of evidence devoid of signs that his client knew of illegal activities (except, perhaps, some smuggling of items, possibly tobacco, to BGF leader Eric Brown, though he's quick to tell the judge during a hearing that "I'm not saying it's true" that she even knew of this illicit activity). What began eight years ago as a pen-pal relationship between Davenport and Brown later blossomed into a Muslim form of marriage, Saunders says. He adds that Brown--if he is the criminal the government contends he is--duped Davenport, making her an unwitting player in the BGF's allegedly criminal enterprise.
The government sees Davenport, whose nickname is "Sister D," as a smuggler, the operator of a BGF front business that helped underwrite the gang's operations, and an intermediary between Brown and other BGF members. Last year she and Brown published The Black Book, a handbook of BGF philosophy as part of a social movement called Jamaa ("jamaa" is a Swahili word for "family"). The book promotes economic and political self-empowerment for black communities and discusses how to confront the reality and legacy of widespread incarceration among black Americans. But law enforcers characterize it as a guidebook for gang behavior and say its sales--and therefore Davenport, as the book's publisher--helped underwrite the violent, drug-dealing, prison-smuggling ways of the BGF in Maryland (see "The Black Book," Mobtown Beat, May 27, 2009).
When Davenport first appeared in court on Apr. 16, she looked as out of her element as Saunders claims she is. Short and petite, with straight black hair and wearing a tidy black jacket, she did not fit in with the two other defendants next to her: 30-year-old convicted murderer Rainbow Lee Williams and 52-year-old Zachary Lee Norman, whose criminal record includes convictions for a murder conspiracy and armed robbery. But if court documents reflect the truth of the matter, Davenport knows Williams well enough to conspire with him to get contraband to Brown in prison.
At 6:15 in the morning on Apr. 16, as Davenport was being arrested, law enforcers who raided her Baltimore County home seized a .357 caliber handgun and a box of .38 caliber ammunition, according to court documents. Also seized were documents related to two companies started by Davenport and Brown: Dee Dat Publishing, which published The Black Book, and Harambee Jamaa Inc., a nonprofit that, according to its incorporation papers, was formed to "liberate our people from poverty, crime, and prison."
During an intercepted phone conversation between Brown and Davenport, which court records say took place late at night on Feb. 26, Brown urged Davenport to "go to the firing range." When Davenport asked "Why?" Brown told her, "bust that gun for a minute. You ain't been out there in a while." During court hearings, Assistant U.S. Attorney James Wallner brought this conversation up, while pointing out that The Black Book instructs women "to be proficient in the use of firearms."
In other intercepted phone conversations, which took place in April, Brown and Davenport discussed smuggled champagne, vodka, and cigars. According to court documents, law enforcers also believe Davenport "is smuggling drugs" to Brown in prison.
After the indictments came down, Wallner announced in open court that the BGF had offered $10,000 for "hits" on correctional officers, investigators, and cooperators who helped make the case ("BGF Offers $10,000 for Hits, Prosecutor Says," Mobtown Beat, April 23). In light of the offer, Wallner stressed Davenport's role as a vector of BGF intelligence, suggesting that she may help get the word out that BGF money is on the table. "Davenport, because of her status as the conduit for all of the BGF," Wallner said to the judge, "is the central location of communication among members and Eric Brown."
The government's take on Davenport came as a complete surprise to Davenport's long-time employer, Thomas Shaner of the Baltimore-based association management firm, Joseph E. Shaner Company.
"To say that we are shocked, that's just an understatement," Shaner said in a May interview. "'Sister D?' Who the hell is this 'Sister D?'
"She's been a solid employee for 20 years," Shaner said. "All I can guess is that she was naïve as hell and was manipulated by Eric [Brown]. I've never met Eric, and I was surprised to learn that Eric is in jail, and has always been in jail, even before she married him. Despite these charges, I still want to believe she's the same person I've known for so long, who I considered a friend and sort of family. But people do crazy things for love."
After debating for weeks in motions and hearings over Davenport's detention, on May 12, Wallner and Saunders reached an agreement, and U.S. District Court magistrate judge Beth Gesner accepted it. Davenport is released to her home, where she will remain locked down pending trial, on electronic monitoring and with strict controls over her communications and conduct. In addition, Davenport's sales of The Black Book will end and she is to have "no contact whatsoever with any inmates or codefendants," Gesner says. The trial, which has yet to be scheduled, is estimated to last a month.BGF Warrant Davenport Government Opposition to Motion Davenport Motion for New Detention Hearing Davenport SSW Return Davenport Supplimentary Motion for New Detention Hearinger
The Black Book
An overarching presence in the Black Guerilla Family (BGF) prison-gang conspiracies indicted in April by the U.S. Attorney's Office in Maryland is not a person, but a book.
Entitled The Black Book: Empowering Black Families and Communities, the 122-page softbound publication is a revolutionary call for economic and political liberation for blacks. Eric Marcell Brown, a 40-year-old inmate of the Maryland correctional system, is the author of much of its contents, and he, along with his wife, Deitra Davenport (see "Family Portraits," Mobtown Beat, May 27, 2009), last year incorporated Dee Dat Publishing to get The Black Book printed and distributed for sale.
Brown, Davenport, and 23 other co-defendants named in the two BGF indictments are accused of drug dealing, prison smuggling, violence, and extortion. Prosecutors say The Black Book served as a propaganda tool for gang recruitment while its sales also helped finance the BGF's criminal activities.
The feds' assertions about the nefarious functions of The Black Book, though, are considered over-the-top by at least one educator: Tyrone Powers, the director of Anne Arundel County Community College's Homeland Security and Criminal Justice Institute and an advisory board member of the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services' Thomas J.S. Waxter Children's Center, a detention facility for young women. A former FBI agent and Maryland State Police trooper, Powers has a Ph.D. in sociology and justice from American University and hosts a radio show called "The Powers Report."
The back cover of The Black Book has the following endorsement from Powers:
These are difficult days that require concrete, specific, effective solutions. This book provides that and more. If we want to win, to change our condition, our situation and the life chances of this generation, of our children and of our children's children then we must read, analyze, think, learn and apply the lessons, concepts and practical solutions that are apart [sic] of this extraordinary volume written by four extraordinary insightful men and leaders.
Powers, in a mid-May phone interview, explains that "I met Eric [Brown] by going into the prison system as part of an effort to deal with three or four different gangs. Eric and others decided to put together this book, and it was all positive. I endorsed it because it could have some impact on the increasing gang problem, because people would read and understand this, as opposed to more academic writing that doesn't connect with young people.
"I am totally unapologetic about endorsing this book and totally unapologetic about meeting Eric Brown," Powers continues, "because it serves a positive purpose--to reduce the violence. This book is a means to that end. I don't know anything about the financing end of it, and as for it being used for gang recruitment--I don't know how it could be used for recruitment. It is all about building peace and tranquility."
Also endorsing The Black Book on its back cover is former two-time Baltimore City mayoral candidate Andrey Bundley, a Baltimore City Public Schools administrator who oversees the city's alternative education programs. "Kudos, to Eric Brown (E.B.) for not accepting the unhealthy traditions of street organizations aka gangs," Bundley wrote. "He has availed his leadership capacity in Jamaa to guide his comrades toward truth, justice, freedom and equality."
Jamaa, according to The Black Book, is a Swahili word for "family" that is defined as "an organization geared towards revitalizing our people and our hoods." Brown and Davenport last year formed a non-profit organization called Harambee Jamaa Inc., which, according to its incorporation papers, intends "to education, invigorate and liberate our people from poverty, crime, and prison."
"I've seen [rival gangs] come together in one room and work on the lessons in The Black Book to get themselves together," Bundley told The Baltimore Sun in early May. "I know Eric Brown was a major player inside the prison doing that work. The quote on the back of the book is only about the work that I witnessed: no more, no less."
The Black Book, according to its introduction, "is designed to make our people aware of the vision of Comrade George Jackson and the struggle that he lived and died for." Jackson, a Black Panther Party member, founded the BGF as a Marxist prison gang in 1966, while serving time at San Quentin State Prison in California for an armed robbery conviction. Jackson was shot to death at San Quentin in 1971, in an incident that also left five others dead; Jackson was armed with a pistol when he was killed. At the time, he was awaiting trial on charges that he murdered a prison guard.
The four chapters of The Black Book include study guides and poems venerating a value system that seeks to uplift black communities, including incarcerated people. It invokes revolutionary ideals from the Black Power, Black Liberation, and Black Nationalism movements of the 1960s and melds them with instructions on how to live life. It calls itself a "living policy book," and includes lessons on civics, economics, and gender roles. The book says, for instance, that a Jamaa woman is to be a "firearm expert," who has "gun in hand, ready to take on all transgressors." When a wife is disobedient, The Black Book says the husband first should "verbally reprimand her," then "refuse to sleep with her," "beat her lightly," and "if these are not effective, the next step is divorce."
During court proceedings in the BGF indictments, Assistant U.S. Attorney James Wallner has claimed that The Black Book generates profits used to underwrite BGF crimes. But Davenport's defense attorney, Thomas Saunders, has questioned that contention. "There is no profit, considering what printing costs are," Saunders said, adding that Davenport "used her own money" to get the book published and was not using it as a "front to funnel money" to the BGF.
Eric Marcell Brown
Like other Maryland prison inmates indicted in the Black Guerilla Family prison-gang conspiracy, Eric Marcell Brown hasn't yet had his first court appearance on the charges, so he remains an unseen player in the case. But the wire-tap investigation of his activities from prison, which resulted in the Apr. 8 grand jury indictment in U.S. District Court in Baltimore, shows how the government views Brown: as the BGF's top leader in Maryland, orchestrating its violent, corrupting operations with funds from selling drugs and The Black Book, his instructional tome about the BGF movement.
Brown doesn't consider the BGF a "gang" at all, but an "organization"--a distinction to which The Black Book devotes a full chapter. The book's 2008 publication put Brown's abilities on display, revealing a knack for marketing and leadership. The law enforcers who came after Brown say his publishing venture has been successful, noting in court documents that upwards of 900 copies were sold, with proceeds going back to the organization. If so, The Black Book, which prescribes self-generated economic empowerment for blacks, especially ex-offenders, is a good example of what the book seeks to advance.
Yet the book also condemns drug dealing as a form of "genocide" and "chemical warfare," so if the government is right about Brown, then he's in direct conflict with his own tenets. The Black Book asserts that Brown, who at 40 years old is 15 years into a 25-year sentence on drug-dealing charges, has undergone a "transition" from his old ways, and encourages others to follow. Court documents filed in the BGF case make a farce of this assertion, but, as the government's case against Brown is tested in court, a clearer picture may emerge of how he measures up to The Black Book's ideals.
According to court documents, one of the government's informants in the BGF investigation said "The Black Book is a ploy by Brown to make BGF in Maryland appear to be a legitimate organization and not involved in criminal activity." In fact, the informant explained, "Brown is a drug trafficker" and "BGF funds its operations primarily by selling drugs"-though The Black Book, too, is "making money."
Brown's cell-phone conversations were intercepted by investigators for months, and in the process, chatter was picked up that seemed to confirm that Brown was involved in drug dealing, along with violence, armed robbery, smuggling, and extortion. Some of the intercepted discussions, as recounted in the court records, were clear and easily interpreted. Others were vague, relying on investigators' training and experience to conclude that nefarious doings were afoot.
One of the recorded conversations showcases Brown's grasp of the rhetoric of radical change. "Listen, man, we are on the verge of very big things, man," Brown said during a three-way call last November with two other BGF members, who were inmates in different Maryland prisons. "This positive movement that we are embarking upon now, right, is moving at a rapid pace, right. It's happening on almost every location" in the prison system. "Revolution is the only solution, brother," he exhorted.
Investigators contend that Brown's hold on the reins of the BGF took it further, so that it now stands accused of "operating in every, single prison facility in the entire state," as assistant U.S. attorney James Wallner put it in court in April. What's more, the movement Brown leads has populist appeal outside of prisons, as suggested by an Apr. 13 meeting in Druid Hill Park, where, according to court documents, about 100 BGF members and supporters gathered as The Black Book and BGF t-shirts were distributed.
With the slow gait of the aged, 51-year-old Randolph "Uncle Rudy" Edison shuffles into a federal courtroom in Baltimore on April 22 to face charges that he helped commit violent crimes for the Black Guerilla Family prison gang in Maryland. The wear and tear of a lengthy prison stint he served in the 1990s and early 2000s (with an extra year tacked on in 2000 for assaulting a Department of Corrections employee), appears to have taken its toll on him.
In 2007, Edison was out of jail and back on the streets, and he racked up new charges--loitering, drug possession (including a state case brought in January)--that show him residing in Dundalk, where he'd been living before his 1993 murder sentence was imposed. Edison's world-weary air in the courtroom reveals little, if any, worry about the future-except, perhaps, when it comes to getting his twice-a-day insulin shots for diabetes, something for his high blood pressure, and a doctor to take a look at the abscess on his hand.
Nonetheless, the feds have evidence portraying Edison as a plugged-in leader of the BGF, working energetically on the outside for imprisoned BGF ringleader Eric Brown.
On March 13, BGF court documents show, Edison and two other BGF co-defendants-52-year-old Zachary Norman and 59-year-old Roosevelt Drummond-were in a car that was pulled over by police in Baltimore City. Drummond had a gun and was arrested; also taken from the car were handcuffs, rubber gloves, and a mask.
Hours later, Brown used a cell phone to call Edison, initiating a conversation that was intercepted by investigators. "We just had some bad luck man," Edison told Brown, according to court documents. "We was in the car, yeah and they pulled us over, right. You know we gonna do something, but the coon that was setting the whole degree up, he's the rat. He set all us up." Edison explained that Drummond had a gun, adding, "Just lucky I ain't carry that thing," to which Brown responded, "that's the last thing you need boy."
Investigators concluded from this conversation that Edison was reporting to Brown what happened with the police while he and his co-defendants were "en route to commit a drug-related armed robbery," according to court documents.
Edison had no lawyer for his first appearance in court, but two days later, on April 24, Richard Bittner is appointed to him. After asking around the courtroom for Edison's sister, who's not there, and meeting briefly with an older gentleman who says he's Edison's friend, Bittner decides not to fight the prosecutor's request that Edison remain in jail until after the trial. U.S. District Court magistrate judge Beth Gesner orders Edison detained, reminding him that if he chooses, he can later request a hearing over whether or not he can be conditionally released.
Rainbow Lee Williams
When defense attorney Gerald Ruter was first appointed on Apr. 16 to represent Rainbow Lee Williams, a 30-year-old co-defendant in the Black Guerilla Family prison-gang federal-conspiracy case, Ruter sounded like he thought there was more to Williams than met the government's eye.
"I have him working for a nonprofit, helping kids," Ruter told assistant U.S. attorney James Wallner, just before Williams' first court appearance began.
"That may be," Wallner responds, "but he's still indicted as a leader of the BGF."
Five days later, Ruter said he had the verified facts about Williams' employment, and presented them to U.S. District Court magistrate judge Beth Gesner while arguing for Williams' conditional release pending trial. Williams, he explained, works for the nonprofit Partners in Progress Resource Center. Since shortly after his release from prison last September, when his murder sentence ended, Ruter said, Williams had been working for Partners in Progress four days a week, from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., for $1,200 per month. Partners in Progress, he explained, serves a high school called the Achievement Academy at Harbor City High School, located on Harford Road.
Ruter said he got all of these facts confirmed by Partners in Progress' director, Bridget Alston-Smith, who, he said, is "aware of Williams' criminal history, and she says he works on the campus itself as a mentor to individuals who have behavioral difficulties and is hands-on with all of the students."
City Paper's attempts to reach Alston-Smith at the phone number Ruter gave in open court were unsuccessful. According to Baltimore City Public Schools' guide to high schools, the Achievement Academy at Harbor City is "an alternative school designed to provide under-credited students with an accelerated program of study," has an enrollment of 383 students in 9th through 12th grade, and Partners in Progress is listed among the schools partnerships.The Black Book, a locally published self-improvement guide for those involved in the BGF movement, features a back-cover blurb written by Alston-Smith, in which she states that men in the movement "lead well because they listen well. As they continue on the path of self-improvement they will help improve the conditions of our families and communities."
"I find it ironic that Mr. Williams is a mentor for disaffected youth," Wallner told judge Gesner. Wallner's prosecutorial assessment is based on what federal investigators found out about Williams in the course of their wire-tap probe into the BGF, which provided enough evidence to support a raid of Williams residence, as well as the grand jury's charges against him. Wallner also told the judge that Williams was in possession of ammunition for a .357 caliber firearm when he was arrested.
Williams is "one of the leaders of BGF," court documents state, and "is a lieutenant who handles the day-to-day drug distribution network and is also involved in the smuggling of contraband into correctional facilities." A confidential source described Williams as "an extremely violent BGF member" who "has committed multiple murders, including numerous assaults/stabbings while in prison," and he's "loyal to, and takes orders from, [imprisoned BGF leader Eric] Brown."
The court documents also recount intercepted phone conversations with other alleged BGF members, in which crimes-from hits to smuggling to drug-dealing-are discussed. In one, co-defendant Marlow Bates calls Brown in March, and the two discuss how Williams failed in his attempt to transfer tennis shoes, which allegedly contained contraband, to Brown while visiting him in prison. Williams kept the shoelaces untied, to facilitate the transfer, but they were so lose that "you could see that shoe lace, like hanging. That just look like a dead give-away," Brown explained, and as a result a guard "knocked off" the shoe transfer. "Rainbow fucked that up," he says.
In early April, phone calls between Williams and prison inmates were intercepted, in which prison violence and the rules of BGF conduct were discussed. In one, Williams calls inmate Lance Walker to talk about the Apr. 1 stabbing murder of inmate Nathaniel King, for which inmate Kelly Toomer is the suspect, according to court documents. But Williams tells Walker that Toomer is saying he did it under orders from Williams. Williams denies this, and says the rumor puts him in danger with BGF higher-ups.
The next day, Apr. 5, Williams is called by an unidentified prison inmate, who tells him that Willliams is believed to have passed on Eric Brown's order to hurt another inmate named "Coco." A conference call with other BGF members ensued, to go over the rules of the BGF, and the penalties for breaking them. In other calls, Williams acts as a mediator, trying to settle beefs between rivals in the BGF drug game.
Wallner also fingers Williams as "one of the leaders" of the BGF meeting in Druid Hill Park, held on Apr. 13 and attended, according to court documents, by about 100 people described as BGF members. "Following this incident," court documents state, "calls were intercepted over the wiretaps in which Eric Brown chastised Rainbow Williams for holding the meeting in such a manner as to draw the attention of law enforcement. Brown stated in a scolding manner, `I been tellin' you and tellin' you, and you ain't listenin.' In reference to being stopped by the police, Brown added, `Ain't nothin' good about that, yo.'"
All of these activities ascribed by investigators to Williams occurred while, according to Ruter, Williams was employed by Partners in Progress as a youth mentor. Despite Ruter's best efforts--and despite Williams' boyish, fresh-faced looks, which he indignantly flashed in response to Wallner's allegations--judge Gesner ordered Williams detained pending trial.
Nelson Arthur Robinson
It's not clear whether 45-year-old Nelson Arthur Robinson recognizes his prosecutor, but he should. As Robinson is ushered into a federal courtroom in Baltimore on Apr. 15 by U.S. marshals, set to be arraigned on accusations that he's part of the sprawling Black Guerilla Family prison-gang conspiracy, assistant U.S. attorney James Wallner is there at the prosecution table. A decade ago, in 1999, Wallner was the assistant Baltimore City state's attorney who secured Robinson's guilty plea on a pot-possession charge, for which Robinson got a one-year sentence, all but a day suspended. This time, Wallner's stone-faced demeanor belies a grim determination to get a bigger piece of Robinson.
In the BGF scheme of things, Robinson would appear to be a relative nobody. With his criminal record since Wallner's last crack at him consisting only of another pot-possession charge, caught last month, the guy seems pretty harmless-or at least hapless. Robinson suffers from diabetes and high blood pressure, his lawyer explains in court, and though he's recently unemployed, until then he'd maintained gainful employment for years as a truck driver for a private delivery service and, before that, for Baltimore County government.
When asked by the court clerk to raise his right hand to take an oath, Robinson instead raises his left and has to be corrected. His obliviousness doesn't fit the profile of a stone-cold gangster, and, in fact, Robinson didn't even rate enough to make it into the BGF indictments. Instead, he's a collateral catch.
Robinson was arrested Apr. 15 while agents were busy raiding 12 BGF-linked locations. He was seen leaving an apartment at 1617 Bluffdale Road in Woodlawn, according to the government's case. The location was under surveillance as part of the BGF take-down because it was associated with Tyrone Dow, a BGF co-defendant believed to be a supplier of drugs for another co-defendant, Kevin Glasscho. Robinson started to get into a truck parked nearby when, as agents approached him, he tossed aside a bag that was found to contain 175 grams of heroin. Robinson had left his keys in the door of the apartment, which was searched and found to contain another 225 grams of heroin, along with pressers and grinders used to process and package the drug.
The charges "smack of a lack of probable cause," protested Robinson's lawyer, David Solomon, during Robinson's Apr. 20 detention hearing before U.S. District Court magistrate judge James Bredar. Solomon added that, though an "indictment may be imminent" against his client, as it stands a grand jury has yet to accuse him, and there "may be problems" with the case. Solomon urged the judge to take into account Robinson's "relative good standing within the justice system," given his recently ended "11-year hiatus" from criminal charges, and allow him to be released to the custody of his wife, Florence Robinson, until after the trial.
Instead, Bredar ordered Robinson on 24/7 lock-down at a half-way house, once a bed becomes available. "He gets in line" for half-way house placement, Bredar said. "Until then, he stays locked up."
One week later, on April 22, the grand jury indicted Robinson.