Teen who fired outside York High football game being released
A juvenile who was 15 when he repeatedly fired a handgun outside a York High football game — endangering about 2,000 people in the process, according to police — has pleaded guilty and received a time-served sentence.
Stephon Damieen Brown, 17, appeared in York County Court on Tuesday, Aug. 7, and pleaded guilty to his lesser charges of illegal possession of a firearm by a minor, reckless endangerment and three counts of criminal mischief.
In exchange for his plea, he was sentenced to a minimum of a year minus a day in prison to a maximum of two years minus two days.
Brown has already spent 663 days in York County Prison, according to defense attorney Korey Leslie, so presiding Common Pleas Judge Michael E. Bortner ordered Brown be released forthwith.
Known as "Mouse," the teen still has two active matters in juvenile court that must be resolved, Leslie told the judge.
Brown had been accused of shooting two men outside the York High football stadium, but his two counts of aggravated assault were dismissed as part of his plea agreement.
No cooperation: Senior deputy prosecutor David Maisch said that's because "victim cooperation was a major issue with this case."
Leslie put it another way:
"The individuals identified as (shooting) victims refused to cooperate, which was consistent with their demeanor at the preliminary hearing, where they were less than forthcoming."
A total of 1,999 counts of reckless endangerment were dismissed after Brown pleaded guilty to one encompassing count on Tuesday. Leslie said that count is for people in the parking lot that day "who could have been injured by the gunfire."
In addition to his prison term, Brown also was ordered to undergo two years' probation and pay $1,750 in restitution for the three cars that sustained damage from Brown's errant bullets. The three criminal-mischief counts were for the damaged vehicles.
Brown will live with his mother in New Freedom and intends to find a job, Leslie told the judge.
Judge Bortner then asked Brown what kind of work he's looking to find. Brown replied, "I haven't really thought of it yet."
Outside the courtroom, Leslie said Brown is "glad it's over."
Teen fugitive: Brown, who apparently was living in the Reading area prior to being arrested, spent five weeks on the lam before being captured in a Lancaster home on Oct. 14, 2016.
Brown was accused of shooting York City brothers Darius Allen, then 24, and Antwan Jackson Jr., then 20, about 9:30 p.m. Sept. 9, 2016, outside the Small Athletic Field football stadium during William Penn Senior High School's home opener against Lancaster County's McCaskey High School.
Police filed the 2,000 counts of reckless endangerment against Brown after estimating the attendance inside Small Athletic Field the night of the shooting.
According to York City Detective First Class George Ripley, there was a verbal disagreement inside the stadium, and it moved outside. The three people involved grew to eight, he said, and included Allen, Jackson and Brown's friend.
Security footage from the high school showed that it appeared the confrontation resolved itself and Allen and Jackson started to walk away, the detective has said.
People took cover: Something caused Allen to turn around, at which point Brown shot him, Ripley said. After Allen was shot, Jackson started to chase down Brown but also was shot by Brown, according to the detective.
"You see people in the parking lot, flinching and taking cover, including the police officers there," Ripley testified at Brown's preliminary hearing in December 2016.
At the time, there was a crowd of people in the parking lot that included families with little children, who also were forced to duck and run for cover, he said.
Allen was shot in the stomach, while Jackson was shot in the upper right side of his back.
Ripley said it appears there were two shooters — that Brown was firing with a .40-caliber and that a second person fired a .380 firearm toward Brown. Neither weapon has been recovered, he said.
According to the detective, it was not a shootout. He said the second person didn't begin firing until after both brothers had been shot and Brown was fleeing.
— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.