- The Washington Times - Friday, April 17, 2009

BALTIMORE (AP) - A Baltimore drug dealer has been convicted of using a contraband cell phone from jail to orchestrate the death of a witness.

Twenty-three-year-old Patrick Byers now faces the possibility of the death penalty after being convicted on eight of the nine counts in a federal indictment. Byers was acquitted of one handgun charge.

Jurors deliberated for a day and a half before deciding Byers was responsible for the death of Carl Lackl. Lackl had identified Byers as the gunman in a previous slaying.

The witness, a 38-year-old single father, was gunned down in a drive-by shooting. Authorities around the country have cited the case in calling for jamming cell phone signals in prisons and jails to prevent those in custody from committing crimes.

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