Frankford teen sentenced in gun case

A Frank­ford man ar­res­ted on weapons charges dur­ing a vi­ol­ent week on Dit­man Street in Oc­to­ber has been sen­tenced to 11½ to 23 months be­hind bars. 

As­sist­ant Dis­trict At­tor­ney Jes­sica Chung told Com­mon Pleas Court Judge Frank Palumbo that 18-year-old Frank­ford res­id­ent An­dre Richard­son was caught with a loaded hand­gun on the 5100 block of Dit­man Street on Oct. 25, 2013. Dur­ing a Ju­ly 31 hear­ing, Chung had asked the judge to sen­tence Richard­son to two to four years im­pris­on­ment.

If Richard­son were re­leased, he would be a danger to the com­munity, Chung told Palumbo. Pub­lic de­fend­er Sarah Coburn ar­gued that her cli­ent had strong fam­ily ties to the neigh­bor­hood and had be­haved him­self dur­ing the nine months he had been im­prisoned since his ar­rest. Be­sides that, she told Palumbo, Richard­son in May had pleaded guilty to pos­sess­ing an un­re­gistered gun.

Chung said Richard­son had been in­volved in crimes as a ju­ven­ile and caught a break in not get­ting sen­tenced to any time then.

The day Richard­son was ar­res­ted, there had been two shoot­ings on the same block of Dit­man Street. Four days earli­er, a 19-year-old man had been shot to death on the 5100 block of Dit­man.

Po­lice of­ficer James Pu­tro test­i­fied at Richard­son’s sen­ten­cing that, when he caught Richard­son, he had to be ordered to raise his hands six times, and, when he fi­nally obeyed, his gun fell to the ground.

“The in­dic­a­tion was,” Chung said, “he was car­ry­ing a fire­arm and was ready to use it.”

“The de­fend­ant is lucky he didn’t get shot,” Palumbo said. ••

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