Teen gets 30-year sentence in shooting during botched pizzeria robbery

A Brooklyn Park teenager received a 30-year prison term Friday for his role in the botched armed robbery of a pizzeria in Glen Burnie that left one man dead and netted no cash for the four youths involved.

"I don't get the impression that you really understand what you've done or what you were involved in, and that's a shame," Anne Arundel County Circuit Court Judge J. Michael Wachs told Charles Sequan "Ruga" Butler, 19, as he handed down the maximum sentence for second-degree murder and called Butler a "dangerous person."

Butler had entered a plea last month in which he did not admit guilt but acknowledged that prosecutors had evidence to convict him in the Nov. 12, 2010 fatal shooting of Misael Flores, who would have turned 21 the next day.

Butler apologized in court.

The cashier said Butler was one of two youths in a four-person group of teenagers who was armed and that all had their faces clocked in bandannas or masks, according to prosecutors. Butler's lawyer, Donald Daneman, said prosecutors told him Butler was not the shooter, but was there.

Flores stopped at Mr. Pizza and Wings to visit a friend on her first day of work at the pizzeria. "His only mistake, if one can call it that, was that he told the defendant and the co-defendant that they should not be robbing the store. For that, he paid the ultimate price," said prosecutor Cristina Ferris.

Eliezer Flores, an older brother of the victim, said the family forgives Butler "for no animosity or vengeance can return Misael to us" and noted that his brother will never have another opportunity to defend himself or anyone else.

Butler was the first in the group to be sentenced. Another pleaded guilty to first-degree murder, and one was convicted by a jury of first-degree murder. The fourth is expected to plead guilty in the fall to second-degree murder, in exchange for a 20-year prison sentence, according to trial testimony.


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