A 27-year-old welder was sentenced to life plus 20 years yesterday for the murder of an Annapolis man, who was shot in the back last summer during a robbery attempt.
Robert Amos Patterson, of the 1000 block of Wooten Court in Silver Spring, was sentenced by Circuit Court Judge Eugene M. Lerner. He had been convicted by a jury of first-degree murder and a handgun violation on July 1.
Patterson was sentenced to life for the murder conviction and to the maximum 20-year consecutive term on his conviction for using a handgun in the commission of a crime of violence.
Rudolph C. Holland, 21, of the 1800 block of Bowman Court, was shot twice in the back on the evening of July 9, 1992, in the parking lot off the first block of Town Pines Court in Annapolis.
The prosecutor said he hoped the severity of the sentence would send a message.
"These types of killings are becoming too commonplace, and you have to send a message that people are not going to come into this county, commit murder, and be treated lightly when they're convicted of it," Assistant State's Attorney Frank Ragione said.
Mr. Ragione said the victim's mother, Vivian Holland -- a frail woman who attended the trial -- was too emotionally drained to attend the sentencing hearing.
She was unavailable for comment yesterday.
Patterson's alleged accomplice, Anthony Lumpkin, 30, formerly of Edgewater, has been charged in a warrant with first-degree murder and remains at large, police said yesterday.
Patterson and Mr. Lumpkin were seen by neighbors in Town Pines Court the night of the murder, according to testimony. Patterson was arrested a week later near Robert F. Kennedy Stadium in Washington by police responding to calls about a drive-by shooting, according to testimony.
An FBI firearms expert testified that the copper-topped bullet taken from Mr. Holland's body, along with one found nearby that had passed through the body, came from the .38 caliber handgun confiscated from Patterson.
Patterson testified that he was never in Annapolis and that it was Mr. Lumpkin who had been carrying the gun that night in Washington.
But several Washington police officers testified that they saw Patterson set the gun down on a sidewalk when ordered.
Mr. Ragione said Patterson faces trial in Prince George's County on charges of armed robbery and assault with intent to murder stemming from two separate crimes.
He also faces handgun charges in New Jersey and New York.