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Man sentenced to 40 years for home invasion

RELATED: See more crime news from the Fredericksburg region

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A Prince William County man was ordered Thursday to serve 40 years in prison for a home-invasion robbery in Stafford County last year in which two men were shot.

Keith Daniel Williams, 21, was previously convicted in Stafford Circuit Court of armed burglary, two counts of robbery, two counts of aggravated malicious wounding, conspiracy and two firearms charges.

Judge Charles Sharp sentenced Williams to a total of 98 years with all but 40 years suspended.

The charges stemmed from a Jan. 29, 2013, incident at 3927 Jefferson Davis Highway in which a group of masked gunmen forced their way in and confronted three victims at gunpoint.

None of the victims resisted, but two of them—Warren Jackson and Jeffrey Hilton—were shot multiple times anyway.

Hilton, who was shot in the leg and groin areas, testified Thursday that he is still suffering greatly from the incident.

“It’s hard to even think about it sometimes,” he said. “I still have nightmares.”

The getaway driver, Clayton George Smith, is serving 93 years in prison. The victims didn’t know who the intruders were, but a surveillance camera at a nearby business showed four people leaving a car just before the robbery and returning to it immediately afterward.

The license number led police to Smith.

One of the guns used in the Stafford shooting was found in Williams’ possession in Prince William. Williams also confessed to being part of the robbery, though he later recanted.

Three other men were charged in the Stafford shooting but the charges were later dropped. Other than Williams’ testimony, which a judge deemed “incredible” at a preliminary hearing, prosecutors decided there was not enough evidence to convict the others.

Prince William Police Detective Robert Kasper testified that Williams was part of a group of men that made a living robbing suspected drug dealers. Kasper said Williams, who already had one robbery conviction, has admitted to several others in Prince William, including one that occurred 45 minutes after the Stafford incident. Children were present at some of the robberies, Kasper said.

But as defense attorney Alexander Raymond pointed out, Williams has not been convicted of any of those robberies.

Prosecutor Kristen Bird argued that the 93 years Smith received should be the “floor” of what Williams should get.

“He’s a bad, bad man,” Bird said. “He’s about the worst that you can find.”

Raymond said Williams deserves a chance to be free again one day, citing his bad childhood and untreated personality disorders as factors in his “terrible” record.

Just before Sharp announced his sentence, Williams made a statement in which he said he was sorry but that he didn’t shoot anyone.

Sharp said he was unmoved by Williams’ apology. “You’ve decided to make a career out of intimidation and gunplay,” Sharp said. “The only way to protect the public is to keep you off the streets.”

Keith Epps: 540/374-5404

kepps@freelancestar.com

 

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