Court for Baltimore County Case No. 03K14006745
Deborah S., Graeff, Alpert, Paul E. (Senior Judge, Specially
DEBORAH S., J.
in the Circuit Court for Baltimore County convicted Jatwan
Derrick Boston of attempted first degree murder, armed
robbery, first degree burglary, use of a firearm in a crime
of violence, and illegal possession of a regulated firearm.
The court imposed concurrent sentences of life in prison for
attempted murder, five years for illegal possession of a
firearm, and twenty years for the remaining crimes.
appeal, Boston presents three questions, which we have
reordered and slightly rephrased:
I. Did the trial court err by admitting into evidence a
recording of a telephone conversation between Boston and his
II. Did the trial court err by admitting into evidence a gun
seized during Boston's arrest?
III. Did the trial court err by admitting into evidence a
jacket that police saw at the crime scene but did not take
into custody until days later?
answer all three questions in the negative and shall affirm
trial, the following facts were adduced.
around 10:00 p.m. on November 29, 2014, three masked men
burst into Steven Matthews's house in Catonsville and
attacked him. The assailants kicked in Matthews's front
door, pointed guns at him, and tied him up with an exercise
band. They hit him with nearby objects and ransacked his
minutes after the three assailants entered, Boston entered
the house as well. He was not wearing a mask, and Matthews
recognized him from the neighborhood. Boston took some
"petty stuff, " like video game consoles, and then
approached Matthews, put a gun "five inches" from
his head, and pulled the trigger. The gun did not fire.
Boston turned to one of the other men, later identified as
David Grant, and said: "We got to kill [Matthews]
because he seen my face." Grant, who was standing about
six feet away from Matthews, fired his gun at Matthews.
Although the bullet struck Matthews in the back of his head,
Matthews managed to break free from the exercise band, get
up, and go after Grant. As the two were "tussling . . .
on the ground, " Grant fired two more shots at
Matthews's head. Matthews tried to protect his head with
his hands, to no avail.
got up from the ground, and the four men left with two
televisions and the keys to Matthews's BMW X6. Still
functional despite the attack, Matthews stayed on the floor,
waiting for the assailants to leave. After "a couple of
minutes, " he walked outside to get help from a
neighbor. He saw Boston, Grant, and a third assailant inside
his BMW, seemingly about to drive off. The fourth assailant
left in the car the assailants originally arrived in. When
Boston saw Matthews, he and the third assailant jumped out of
the car and attacked him. The three ended up on the ground,
fighting. Boston called for Grant, who got out of the car
with a gun, got close to the fighting men, and shot Matthews
in the back of his arm. Matthews kicked the gun out of
Grant's hand, but it discharged and the bullet struck the
back of Matthews's leg. When Matthews attempted to get up
to run away, Grant shot him in the back of the head. Boston,
Grant, and the third assailant got back in Matthews's BMW
and drove away.
Matthews got himself to his next door neighbor's house,
and the neighbor called 911. On the 911 tape, Matthews can be
heard in the background telling his neighbor that Boston had
attacked him. Matthews was taken to a hospital, where he
underwent surgery. Following the surgery, Matthews spoke with
investigating officers and told them that Boston, along with
three other men, had attacked him and burglarized his house.
The officers showed Matthews a photograph of Boston and he
confirmed that Boston was one of the attackers.
December 1, 2014, police located Boston in Baltimore City.
They surveilled him as he and Grant and an unidentified woman
entered a vehicle near the 3400 block of Round Road. The
police followed the vehicle and eventually made a traffic
stop during which Boston and Grant were arrested. The police
recovered a "Colt .45 caliber handgun" from
"the front waistband of . . . Boston's
sweatpants." They also recovered a ".32
semi-automatic handgun" from where Grant had been
sitting in the vehicle immediately before being arrested.
shall include additional facts in our discussion of the
Recorded Telephone Conversation
times relevant to this case, Jonte Lee, Boston's older
brother, was incarcerated at the Baltimore County Detention
Center ("Detention Center"). On November 30, 2014,
the day after Matthews was attacked, Lee placed a telephone
call from the Detention Center to his girlfriend. Before Lee
started to speak, an automated recording announced:
"This call will be recorded and subject to monitoring at
the beginning of the conversation, Lee asked his girlfriend
to call Boston toward the end of the call. After Lee and his
girlfriend had talked for a while, Lee told her to try to
call Boston. She then dialed Boston into the call. The
pertinent portions of the recorded call with Boston on the
line are as follows:
MR. LEE: What's up, dumb ass?
[BOSTON]: What's up, dumb ass?
MR. LEE: What are you-what you- are you good?
[BOSTON]: Yeah, man. I'm all right.
MR. LEE: You sure? I know it ain't nothing you can talk
to me about but -you feeling me?
[BOSTON]: Yeah. Everything's (indiscernible) I ain't
said nothing (indiscernible).
MR. LEE: I'm putting you in my prayers; you heard me?
[BOSTON]: Yeah, bro.
MR. LEE: I just wanted to tell you I love you, before -
before - before me anything.
[BOSTON]: I love you, too, man.
MR. LEE: Just in case the n***** don't get back in
contact; you feeling me? But I hope you stay (indiscernible);
you hear me?
[BOSTON]: Yeah. I'm going around (indiscernible)
tomorrow, for real.
MR. LEE: Oh, why, oh, why, oh, why, oh why? Damn, yo.
[BOSTON]: I know you heard though.
MR. LEE: Yeah. Mother f-ker Kim called Keonia (phonetic) and
MR. LEE: Kim called Keonia.
[BOSTON]: What about?
MR. LEE: This n*****, yo; on, my God, yo. Hello?
[BOSTON]: (Indiscernible) lit them.
MR. LEE: Huh?
[BOSTON]: He lit.
MR. LEE: Huh?
[BOSTON]: He lit like wheezing.
MR. LEE: He live?
[BOSTON]: He lit.
MR. LEE: Lit?
[BOSTON]: He light up (indiscernible) he got a light on him.
MR. LEE: Oh. (Pause.)
MR. LEE: Damn, ...