CLEVELAND – The Fox 8 I-Team obtained exclusive video showing violent crimes.
One video from a security camera, the other found on a defendant’s cell phone.
The security video from a business in Tremont shows a June 14 carjacking of two men.
The video shows a car bump the vehicle in front of him. When the victims get out of the car to check damage, three suspects all armed with guns, get out of the other car.
The suspects robbed the victims, then took the car and fled.
A month later, the suspects, two juveniles and an adult, were arrested on another case.
Earlier this week, the adult arrested, Lawrence Dowdell, 18, was sentenced to 14 years behind bars.
John Luskin, Dowdell’s attorney, told the court his client had a difficult life.
“He has suffered scars in his life that are just unbelievable and he has tried,” Luskin said. “Judge black lives matter in these type of cases and this is the type of situation where we need to have a structured situation where punishment has to be tempered with justice.”
But Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Nancy Margaret Russo disagreed.
“People have suffered; people have suffered abuse. They have suffered violence, but that does not give anybody the excuse to go out and terrorize other people,” Judge Russo said.
Prosecutors stressed that Dowdell was a gang leader. They said he and his gang members terrorized others.
The I-Team obtained video that prosecutors say was found on Dowdell’s phone. It appears to be video of a gun being fired out of a car window. Prosecutors also showed the judge videos of the defendant with guns.
Dowdell told the judge he takes full responsibility for his actions.
“Being in this jail changed me,” Dowdell said.
Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Mike O’Malley says those committing violent crimes need long prison sentences.
“Right now our community is under siege by young men between the ages of 14 and 21 who are causing havoc and we have to do something about it,” O’Malley said.