A 22-year-old Baltimore man was sentenced to life in prison yesterday after pleading guilty to kidnapping and nearly killing a woman and to shooting an Anne Arundel County police officer in 1997.
Norman Lindsey Mayes, of the 2700 block of Yarnall Road in Baltimore Highlands, cried as he turned toward his two shooting victims in court and apologized.
"It ain't like me to hurt people. I wish I could blame everything on drugs. I chose to take the drugs and now I got to take responsibility," he told Anne Arundel County Circuit Judge Joseph P. Manck.
Mayes agreed to an arrangement that will return him to court within five years, when a judge will consider shortening his sentence to about 50 years.
"We will take a look at the sentence," the judge said. "But there are no promises."
Two people, however, did make promises yesterday.
Officer Jeffrey Morgan, who said getting wounded made him much more cautious at work, vowed that he, his wife, his family or friends would attend all hearings to try to block Mayes' efforts to get parole or a shortened sentence.
"He needs help, but I don't think he can get the help he needs in five years," the police officer said.
Assistant State's Attorney Warren Davis III also made a pledge. "I'm going to oppose it then. Life is going to be just as appropriate then as it is now."
In exchange for the plea, prosecutors dropped lesser charges, including four for auto theft.
Mayes' attorney, Assistant Public Defender Mary Jo Livingston, depicted her client as a troubled child who turned to drugs for comfort at 15, dropped out of high school and got involved with heroin. In jail, he has been treated for a psychiatric disorder, she said, but never for drug addiction.
"All he could see is where he was going to get his next shot from," Livingston said.
Mases told police that he was high on PCP on Nov. 6, 1997, the night he shot Evelyn L. Seto of Pasadena. He had been released Nov. 1 on parole and probation for auto theft,
Seto sat silently in the courtroom. In a written statement to the judge she said Mayes caused her permanent disabilities, including loss of sensation in her face. She also said that she now is anxious whenever she goes into a parking lot and has lost so much time at work she has been bypassed for promotions and raises.
The night she was shot, Seto was getting into her minivan in the Northrup Grumman Corp. parking lot near Baltimore-Washington International Airport after work when Mayes forced her into a blue car stolen from the parking lot of Marley Station mall. He bound her hands with duct tape and punched her when she struggled.
She escaped in front of a home in Linthicum. As she scrambled up the driveway, Mayes shot her, He left her with 11 bullet wounds, a shattered ankle and jaw, two broken ribs and a punctured lung.
The homeowners called 911, but before police arrived, Mayes drove off.
The next day, Morgan stopped a van driving erratically on Elkridge Landing Road. Mayes began to get out. When Morgan told him to stay in the van, Mayes shot at the police officer four times, grazing the inside of his arm and his torso. Mayes then fled, crashed the van and ran off. His fingerprints were found in the van, which had been stolen from the Annapolis Harbour Center parking lot.
The next day, Baltimore County police surrounded Mayes' grandmother's home and coaxed him out. He told police he shot Seto to get her to stop running toward the house so he could escape and that he shot Morgan for the same reason.