LA PLATA, MD—Tony Covington, State’s Attorney for Charles County, announced that on Wednesday, November 9, 2022, Charles County Circuit Court Judge Donine Carrington Martin sentenced Richard Eugene Middleton, Jr., 39, to Life Without Parole plus 125 years in prison for the First-Degree Murder of Kwasi Louard-Clarke, the Attempted First-Degree Murder of Montreal Wade and Tyrone Coleman, Home Invasion, and related charges.

On June 13, 2022, a Charles County jury convicted Middleton of the abovementioned charges.

On June 15, 2020, officers responded to the 2400 block of Shawnee Lane in Waldorf for the report of a shooting. Upon arrival, officers found victim Kwasi Louard-Clarke deceased from numerous gunshot wounds. A short distance away, two other victims, Montreal Wade and Tyrone Coleman were also found suffering from gunshot wounds. Wade and Coleman were transported to area trauma centers to treat life-threatening injuries; fortunately, they survived.

An investigation revealed that Middleton and Louard-Clarke got into an altercation at a barber shop where Middleton worked before the shooting. After the altercation, Louard-Clarke left the barber shop and arrived at his residence in the 11700 block of Lancelot Drive in Waldorf. Louard-Clarke’s parents also lived at that location and were present inside the residence. Coleman and Wade arrived shortly after Louard-Clarke to hang out and get a haircut. Armed with a gun, Middleton received a ride to Louard-Clarke’s neighborhood and was dropped off near his home. Middleton proceeded to walk to Louard-Clarke’s residence and began shooting at the men who were standing outside.

Coleman was shot in the arm and stomach while running away. Wade, who also attempted to run away, was shot in the back twice. Both men could escape the area in a vehicle operated by Wade.

Louard-Clarke was shot in the leg while fleeing to a neighboring residence to get help. Middleton unlawfully entered the residence where Louard-Clarke fled, where children were also present and pointed a gun at the owner. Louard-Clarke then exited the residence, followed by Middleton. Louard-Clarke pled for his life to Middleton but was shot multiple times, including at close range to the head. Middleton fled the area after the shooting but was apprehended by police the same day.

Multiple witnesses reported the events during the investigation, and Middleton confessed to police officers. Police also obtained surveillance footage of the beginning of the shooting.

Unfortunately, both of Louard-Clarke’s parents witnessed the initial shooting, and his mother witnessed Louard-Clarke in his final resting place after the incident.

At sentencing, Assistant State’s Attorney Jonathan Beattie told the judge, “This is amongst the most violent and heinous crimes that I think most of us have come across.” He further said, “Decisions have consequences. This was a considered, deliberate, and intentional decision to take someone’s life; the State estimates that [Middleton doesn’t] deserve to live free amongst society for the rest of [his] life.”

Speaking on Louard-Clarke’s parents witnessing the incident, Beattie said, “No parent expects to bury their child. [In this case,] the last memory of your child is him being violently killed.”

Sentence

  • First-Degree Murder
    • Life Without Parole
  • Use of a Firearm During the Commission of a Crime of Violence
    • 20 Years, Concurrent to Previous Counts
  • Attempted First-Degree Murder of Wade
    • 50 Years, Consecutive to Previous Counts
  • Use of a Firearm During the Commission of a Crime of Violence
    • 20 Years, Concurrent to Count 5
  • Attempted First-Degree Murder of Coleman
    • 50 Years, Consecutive to Previous Counts
  • Use of a Firearm During the Commission of a Crime of Violence
    • 20 Years, Concurrent to Count 9
  • Home Invasion
    • 25 Years, Consecutive to Previous Counts
  • Use of a Firearm During the Commission of a Crime of Violence
    • 20 Years, Concurrent to Previous Counts
  • First-Degree Assault
    • 15 Years, Concurrent to Previous Counts
  • Use of a Firearm During the Commission of a Crime of Violence
    • 10 Years, Concurrent to Previous Counts
  • Loaded Handgun on Person
    • 3 Years, Concurrent to Previous Counts
  • Wear, Carry, and Transport of Handgun on Person
    • 3 Years, Concurrent to Previous Counts
  • Wear, Carry, and Transport of Handgun in Vehicle
    • 3 Years, Concurrent to Previous Counts
  • Illegal Possession of a Regulated Firearm after Being Convicted of Disqualifying Crime
    • 5 Years, Concurrent to Previous Counts

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