Rejecting an "evil twin" defense, an angry Baltimore County judge gave the supposedly "good" twin life without parole yesterday for murdering a 15-year-old runaway last June after the brothers raped and sodomized her.
"You are a dangerous human being," Circuit Judge James T. Smith Jr. told Tyrone Page, 36, at times raising his voice and pounding to emphasize his points.
Page and his identical twin brother, Jerome, lived off and on with their mother in the 2100 block of Monumental Ave. in Halethorpe, not far from the victim's home in the 2000 block of Putnam Ave.
Amanda Lee Hall, a 10th-grader at Lansdowne High School, ran away from home last June 1, after a dispute over a boyfriend. She apparently stayed with friends at first, but on June 3 slept outdoors in an alcove of the women's restroom of the neighborhood recreation center.
Judge Smith told Page the crime was not an incident in which he was "17 years old and under the influence of a drug. . . . You were already convicted when you were about 17 in a very similar incident."
Assistant State's Attorney Scott D. Shellenberger said both brothers were convicted and given three-year sentences in 1974 for battery. They had watched the gang-rape of a woman abducted from Columbia and taken to Halethorpe. Afterward, Tyrone Page carried the victim off and fondled her.
"That case is almost identical to the situation here," Mr. Shellenberger said. "They were literally learning their crime."
Last week Jerome Page, who already has been sentenced to life without parole for his role in the murder, testified that he strangled Amanda. His testimony saved Tyrone from a possible death sentence. Prosecutors believed Tyrone actually strangled Amanda.
During the sentencing, defense attorney Robert W. Lazzaro said there was an "inexorable bond" between the twins.
"One seems to be an evil twin; the other seems to be an essentially good one, misled by the other," said Mr. Lazzaro, who asked for a life sentence with the hope of parole for Tyrone, whom he said has a 6- to 7-year-old's intellect.
Mr. Shellenberger said both brothers are "evil. They feed off each other."
Tyrone's mother, sister, estranged wife and a clinical psychologist testified yesterday that Jerome was a violence-prone troublemaker who led the helpful and mild-mannered Tyrone astray.
Isabell Page, the mother, said Tyrone "was more of a homebody. . . . [There] was a difference between the way he and Jerome treated me. He went to church with me."
While Jerome Page served nine years for killing a man with a fork, Tyrone worked hard and had only minor brushes with the law.
Before being sentenced, Tyrone apologized and said, "I can't believe what my brother did, you know . . . do something like this, that I was involved."