A federal judge sentenced a Baltimore man to life in prison Wednesday in the 2015 killing of a woman and her 7-year-old son.
U.S. District Judge Richard D. Bennett handed a mandatory life sentence to Andre Ricardo “Poo” Briscoe, 39, of Baltimore and Cambridge, after he was convicted by a jury in June after a 12-day trial.
Briscoe was convicted on federal drug distribution charges, use of a firearm to commit murder in relation to drug trafficking crimes, killing a witness to prevent communication with law enforcement, and being a felon in possession of firearm and ammunition.
Federal prosecutors brought charges against Briscoe in 2020, five years after police found 31-year-old Jennifer Jeffrey and her 7-year-old son Kester Browne, known as Tony, shot to death in their Southwest Baltimore home. Authorities say Briscoe carried out the shooting in the Uplands neighborhood as part of a drug-related robbery.
Briscoe shot the boy multiple times, including in the head and mouth, to prevent him from communicating with law enforcement, prosecutors said. Tony’s principal described the second grader, who was killed in his pajamas, as a “gentle soul.”
Prosecutors said 38-year-old Kiara Haynes of Baltimore, Briscoe’s co-defendant with whom he was romantically involved, helped him obtain a gun. Briscoe told Haynes he planned to kill Haynes’ longtime friend Jeffrey to steal Jeffrey’s heroin, according to trial testimony.
Haynes told a relative on a recorded jail line that she needed a gun for Briscoe to rob Jeffrey and offered him stolen heroin in exchange for the loan of the gun, the Maryland U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a news release Wednesday.
The relative agreed, and his brother gave Briscoe and Haynes a .45-caliber firearm, prosecutors said. On May 27, 2015, Briscoe took the gun to Jeffrey’s home and shot her and her son multiple times, taking 80 grams of drugs, the release said.
Haynes returned the gun to the inmate’s relative along with the heroin Briscoe gave her, as payment for the use of the weapon, according to the release. Prosecutors said police found Jeffrey and her son dead in their home the next day.
Haynes was sentenced to 25 years in federal prison for aiding and abetting the use and discharge of a firearm in relation to a drug trafficking crime and crime of violence, the release said. She pleaded guilty in November 2021.
In response to a request for comment on his client’s sentence, Briscoe’s attorney William B. Purpura Jr. wrote in an email that the double homicide was “just another very tragic event in a City which has become numb to violence.”