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80 YEARS FOR KILLING TWO 31-year-old electrician is sentenced in drug-related city slayings last April.


A 31-year-old electrician was sentenced to 80 years in prison today in Baltimore City Circuit Court for killing two men following a 48-hour cocaine binge last April.

Judge Ellen L. Hollander sentenced Ricardo Burks, of the 400 block of South Augusta Ave., to the maximum 30 years for each second-degree murder conviction and 20 years for use of a handgun.

The murder sentences will run consecutively with the 40 years he's already serving in Baltimore County for kidnapping an Owings Mills couple on April 20, 1991, the day after the murders. The handgun sentence will run concurrently.

Before the sentencing, Burks said what happened was a tragedy.

"I got caught up and a lot of bad things happened," Burks said.

In December, a jury found Burks, the father of five children, guilty of second-degree murder in the deaths of Marvin Odell Willis 3rd, 25, and Derrick Lamont Newman, 19.

The jury also acquitted Burks in the slayings of Charles "Chunky" Jefferson Jr., 18, and Joseph Christopher Alston, 15, and in four first-degree murder charges originally brought against him in the four deaths.

Last April 19, after purchasing "a bad bag" of cocaine, Mr. Willis and Burks tried to find the seller, Burks testified. They couldn't, but ran into the three youths who Mr. Willis invited to his home, Burks said. Mr. Willis later shot the three youths in his basement on Yale Avenue.

Burks said Mr. Willis tried later to attack him, but he shot Mr. Willis in self-defense.

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