La Plata, MD – As a Charles County Circuit Court jury rendered its verdict Tuesday, Dec. 20, the shoulders of Caroline Marie Conway, 53 of Waldorf, began dropping a little more with each count as it was returned with an answer of “guilty” from the foreman.
Conway was convicted of First Degree Murder of Robert Mange, Conspiracy to Commit First Degree Murder of Robert Mange, Unlawful Use of a Firearm in the Commission of a Crime of Violence related to the Murder of Robert Mange, Attempted First Degree Murder of Krystal Mange, Conspiracy to Commit First Degree Murder of Krystal Mange, Unlawful use of a Firearm in the Commission of a Crime of Violence related to the Attempted Murder of Krystal Mange, First Degree Assault of Krystal Mange, Unlawful use of a Firearm in the Commission of a crime of violence related to the First Degree Assault of Krystal Mange, and Reckless Endangerment of four individuals.
Also, despite her plea that she was Not Criminally Responsible for her conduct, the jury found her Criminally Responsible on all charges in the incident which occurred May 20, 2015, at the Rock ‘N’ Roll McDonald’s located at Mall Circle in Waldorf and the wounding of Krystal Manges.
The verdict followed a 10-day trial and almost two days of deliberation. It also included a warning to the jury from Judge Eric Nyce on Monday, Dec. 19 to get busy or he might have to play the Grinch for Christmas.
Nyce took over for Judge Steven I. Platt, and as jury deliberations appeared to stall on Monday, the new judge turned the tables on the twelve deliberators.
One juror informed Judge Platt they had an international flight leaving Dec. 21 and requested to have Tuesday off to pack.
Another juror sent a note claiming they had to go out of town on Tuesday.
Judge Nyce wasn’t so nice.
After a debate away from the jury, Nyce said, “I do think this case is going to take precedent.”
Charles County Assistant States Attorney Francis Granados told the judge this was the first time the one juror had mentioned anything about having to be out of town on Tuesday.
“My view of it, I can’t surrender this case because someone has to be out of town,” Nyce stated. When the jury returned to the courtroom, any plans they may have had suddenly scuttled.
“To the juror who has an international flight on Wednesday, I suggest you spend this evening packing your bags because I am going to need you to be back here on time tomorrow,” the judge admonished. “We are going to deliberate tomorrow.”
Notes sent to the judge throughout Monday’s deliberation, asked for information on an issue that was not related to evidence in the case. The judge asked them to continue to deliberate and to focus on the evidence as presented throughout the trial.
As requests to be excused began drifting in, the judge decided to be a little more forceful. “A jury summons is in effect,” Nyce announced. “All jurors need to be here tomorrow.”
When deliberations resumed Tuesday, the jury asked to revisit the interview between the defendant and Charles County Sheriff’s Office Det. John Elliott.
They were only halfway through the interview when the judge took a break. Before the interviewing could resume the jury sent a note to the judge announcing they had reached their verdict.
Nyce said a sentencing date will have to be determined as it was Judge Platt’s case and he would have to consult with his office for that part of proceedings. Conway faces four life sentences plus 100 years. The State previously filed its Notice of Intent to Seek a Sentence of Life Imprisonment Without the Possibility of Parole.
An investigation into the shooting revealed that the victims were involved in an ongoing heated child custody battle with former Prince George’s County Police Officer, Richard Conway, the son of Caroline Conway.
Richard Conway, a former Prince George’s County police officer whose service weapon was used to commit the murder, allegedly conspired with his mother in the crime. Conway will face trial in Charles County Circuit Court Jan. 3.
Originally posted at The BayNet: http://www.thebaynet.com/articles/1216/conwayfoundguiltyinmurdertrial.html.