- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 18, 2010

Carlos Bernard Alexander’s cry carried surprise and terror when three boys trapped him in a dark courtyard of the Langston Terrace public housing complex in Northeast Washington and demanded his money.

Although his home was about 30 blocks away, the 47-year-old handyman was a familiar sight at Langston Terrace. Police were told he frequently came to the project’s courtyard to buy crack cocaine.

But on this night - a cold February night before the first of last winter’s two crippling blizzards - something very different lay in store.

“Give me the money, or I’ll kill you,” hissed a thin 16-year-old named Dominick Payne.

“Just give him the money,” another boy snapped. “He’ll do it.”

That’s when Mr. Alexander cried out, and the boys pounced.

The attack, detailed in a Metropolitan Police report, is among many in Washington driving a spike in juvenile crime, even as violent offenses nationwide plummet. An investigation by The Washington Times has revealed a persistent and troubling trend to be the pattern of violence among a population under the supervision of the city’s Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services (DYRS).

Deaths alone tell the story.

Of the 110 people publicly identified by police or prosecutors as being arrested for or charged with homicide in the District between Sept. 1, 2009, and Aug. 31, The Times investigation found that 41 were 21 years old or younger. At least 26 of these alleged young killers - more than 60 percent - were either committed to DYRS at the time, previously committed or had a record of prior juvenile arrests.

Dominick Payne, known as “Domo,” was among them.

After Mr. Alexander fell to the ground, according to the report, Domo attacked him with a fury his slight frame couldn’t possibly suggest. He lifted Mr. Alexander by his shirt - just enough so his head was off the ground - and punched him again and again.

Mr. Alexander soon quieted under the blows, after what must have seemed an eternity. Domo gave Mr. Alexander’s head a hard crack against the ground and climbed off from him. Domo’s two cohorts, 18-year-old Daquan Johnson, or “Quan,” and 16-year-old Anthony Clark, known as “Fatman,” administered some final kicks.

Langston Terrace residents heard the handyman’s screams. Some even saw the attack. They knew Domo, Quan and Fatman. The three were part of a petty drug-dealing crew that referred to itself as LT3. Residents said the trio also robbed and victimized elderly people who lived there.

The boys turned out Mr. Alexander’s pockets, the report said, emptying his wallet and carrying off his cell phone and the keys to his truck, which they stole.

After his attackers left, Mr. Alexander struggled to his feet and stumbled from the scene. But he didn’t get far.

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