- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 18, 2001

Shootings that sometimes wounded and killed unintended victims overshadowed drug dealings in Southeast in the mid-1990s, a witness testified yesterday in the U.S. District Court trial of six men.
For instance, two Metropolitan Police Department officers were ambushed and untargeted victims in 1996, testified Damien "O-Face" Green, 24, who did not recognize and could not identify photographs of Officers Kerbin Johnson and Darren Marcus.
The officers had driven unmarked police cars into an alley in the Stanton Dwelling neighborhood on the night of June 7, 1996. Green testified that his lifelong friend and drug-dealing associate, Shelton "Wah-Luck" Marbury, ran with him into the alley to begin shooting.
"I knelt down on one knee and I opened fire on both cars," Green said, describing how "I emptied" a 17-shot 9 mm pistol in "about 10 seconds."
Green testified that he and Marbury barely had time to ditch their guns in bushes and a trash can before police arrived.
"They laid all of us down. They said police just got shot," Green testified. "Far as I knew, I was shooting at 'Tweety' and them," referring to Edgar "Tweety" Watson, who was killed a year later.
Green is the first witness to the defendants' purported activities to testify in the 10-week of trial of Marbury and five co-defendants, charged with racketeering, drug-dealing, conspiracy and involvement in 14 murders in the mid-1990s.
Tommy Edelin, 33, charged as the leader, could be sentenced to death if convicted. Co-defendants facing possible life terms without parole if convicted are Marbury, Henry "Blue" Johnson, Bryan Bostick, Marwin "Funky" Mosley, and Mr. Edelin's father, Earl "Tony" Edelin, 51.
From the witness stand, Green has identified all defendants except Bostick.
Green testified about other shootings that seemed to have no relation to drug dealings by the Stanton Dwelling Crew, Stanton Terrace Crew and the One-Five Mob. For instance, on Dec. 9, 1997, Larah Duane Henderson, 22, was wounded in a shooting and loaded into an ambulance. He was shot again and killed en route to the hospital.
Ten months later, Robert W. Byrd, 25, pleaded guilty to running up to the ambulance and firing six shots that killed Henderson and wounded a medic. Steven Terrell, 18, drove him in a getaway car, only to be shot and killed by Byrd.
"We were beefing in both neighborhoods," said Green, who hopes to get a more lenient sentence than life imprisonment in exchange for his testimony. "We had our guns" ready to go in groups into enemy territory, and for "protection."
Green described seven shooting scrapes. He said Tony Edelin, described by other witnesses as the firearms expert who gave advice on how to kill, encouraged Green to carry a gun, although police might arrest him and charge him with having an unlicensed gun. It was better to be arrested than to be unarmed when encountering their enemies, Green said.
Green corroborated the testimony last week of Anthony "Spook" Payton's mother. Two days after her son was killed May 8, 1996, Debra Payton and a daughter happened to meet Marbury while driving in the Stanton Dwelling area. Mrs. Payton testified that Marbury raised his hand as if he were holding a gun, pointed it at her, and laughed.
"We had our guns on us," Green said, but claimed the daughter had raised her index finger at them first. In addition to imitating shooting his gun, Marbury called to Mrs. Payton, "bust off," meaning he would shoot, Green testified.
Crime continued even after he was jailed. Green testified about getting marijuana to smoke, PCP and even selling the drugs to other inmates, who also dealt drugs that were smuggled into various correctional institutions, including the main D.C. prison at the Lorton Correctional Complex.
Green said he began doing PCP, smoking pot and drinking alcohol while he was in his preteen years. Questioned by Pleasant Brodnax, one of Tommy Edelin's three attorneys, Green described how the drugs sometimes affected him.
"It makes you on point," meaning overly alert, Green testified. "It makes your body numb. … You get like a big head, got glasses."
The last phrase drew laughter from jurors, spectators and attorneys even Mr. Brodnax, who turned away and doubled over in laughter. Mr. Brodnax, who seems very confident, wears glasses.

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