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Second teen denied bail in killing

Homicide

The teen homicide suspect stood with his head hung low Tuesday as his attorney pleaded unsuccessfully for a judge to take his youth and learning disabilities into consideration and grant him bail.

Allen Pinkney, wearing the distinctive black-and-white T-shirt in which he was arrested Saturday, stood shackled in the second row of a courtroom in the Baltimore Central Booking and Intake Center.

Pinkney, 16, is one of two teenagers who Baltimore police say fatally stabbed 51-year-old Kimberly Leto during a burglary Friday in Highlandtown.

Alonzo Gorham-Ramos, 14, was denied bail on Monday. Pinkney's bail review had been scheduled for the same day but had been postponed after his attorneys asked for time to evaluate his mental competence.

He underwent a mental health evaluation before the hearing Tuesday and was found ready to appear. Baltimore District Judge Rachel E. Cogen said she denied him bail based on the serious nature of the charges.

"How terribly sad and tragic this thing is all around," she said.

Linda A. Ramirez, Pinkney's attorney, said her client had not been arrested before. He suffers from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder but has been off his medication and has not been seen by a physician in some time, according to court testimony.

Pinkney missed being eligible to be held in a juvenile detention facility by just a few days. Ramirez tried to persuade the judge to move him out of an adult cell by asking her to consider his slight build.

"As you can see Allen is about 5-3 and skinny," she said. "He looks younger than his age."

Ramirez said the boy has a strong family and pointed out that Pinkney's mother and grandmother were in attendance.

"He has very strong parental support," she said.

But the attorney was unable to win a transfer for her client. Ramirez said after the hearing that she was worried about Pinkney's well-being while he remains confined with men. She said her client has been sleeping in the same clothes, and she has not been able to find out why he hasn't been given a jail jumpsuit at least.

She said Pinkney had not been able to call his mother.

Pinkney's two relatives, watching the hearing on television monitors in a waiting area, reacted somberly when the judge rejected the bail request.

They said they remained stunned by the arrest. They said they think often about Leto, a woman who worked as a Canton bartender and lived in Southeast Baltimore.

"Our hearts just go out to all involved in this and right now we're just staying in prayer through all this for all the victim's family and for both young men involved," said one of the women, who identified herself as a relative but declined to give her name. "It affects all the members."

Gorham-Ramos, who lives in Northeast Baltimore in the 3600 block of Parkside Drive, and Pinkney, who lives about a mile away in the 3500 block of Juneway, have been charged as adults on counts that include first-degree murder, possession of a dangerous weapon with intent to injure and burglary.

Both attend Friendship Academy of Engineering and Technology, a Northeast Baltimore middle and high school, Baltimore City Public Schools confirmed.

Baltimore Sun reporter Erica L. Green contributed to this article.

jgeorge@baltsun.com

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Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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