(Updated 4/29 6 p.m.)
The 15-year-old boy who was shot in the back of the head last summer in Marriottsville remembers floating in and out of consciousness, according to court records. He remembers trying to stand up, but not being able to. And he remembers – vaguely – speaking with the paramedics and police who found him.
He also remembers 21-year-old Chiquita Valencia Sketers telling him, as she loaded the gun that shot him in the back of the head, that he was going to die that day, according to court records.
Sketers pleaded guilty Monday to first-degree attempted murder just as jury selection was getting underway for her trial, according to Howard County State's Attorney spokesperson Wayne Kirwan.
According to the statement of facts that Sketers agreed to as part of her plea, the 15-year-old was walking a friend home in Reisterstown on June 19, 2012, when he called out to someone he thought he knew. As the teenager and the man walked toward each other, the teenager realized it wasn’t his acquaintance, but a stranger.
The man, Donald George Peoples, began asking the teenager questions about a a robbery and various people, according to the statement. The teenager didn’t want to talk to Peoples, who he didn’t know, but Peoples grabbed the boy’s arm and showed what looked like a handgun. Peoples then took the teenager to a car in a nearby lot.
Sitting in the driver’s seat, according to the statement, was Laura Christian Karr.
Peoples forced the teenager into the back seat with him, according to the statement. He then got in on the other side and asked Karr if the teenager was the one that had stolen from him.
Karr said “maybe,” and “she thought so,” then she said they had the right boy, according to the statement. Peoples questioned the teenager, and then crawled in the back seat and began beating him after the teen said he didn’t know anything about the theft.
Karr then drove to pick up Sketers. The teenager, who had been ordered to crouch down on the floor, said he heard Sketers talking to Peoples, then saw her walk away, return, and sit in the front seat, according to the statement.
He also saw she had a rifle.
As Karr drove toward Howard County, the teenager said he heard Sketers loading the rounds of ammunition into the rifle’s magazine and then, racking the rifle, chambering a round. Sketers told the teenager that he was going to die that day.
Karr drove into a gravel driveway on the 11400 block of Old Frederick Road in Marriottsville, according to the statement. Sketers opened the back door for Peoples who ordered the teenager to get out of the car.
Sketers gave Peoples the gun, according to the statement, and Peoples ordered the teenager to walk into the bushes.
According to the statement of facts, as the teenager walked “he heard a gunshot and he fell to the ground.”
The resident of the home at the end of the driveway where the teenager was shot was outside walking when he saw the teenager laying on the ground near vomit and “a large amount of blood,” according to the statement.
The resident called 911 and the teenager was taken to University of Maryland Shock Trauma. As doctors were working to save his life, according to the statement of facts, Sketers was with Peoples, drinking alcohol and playing video games.
Sketers will be sentenced on July 5.
Peoples and Karr face the same charges. In addition, they each face one charge of armed robbery. Peoples’ trial is scheduled to begin in late June; Karr’s is scheduled for mid-July.