Man sentenced to life in prison for ordering the murder of an Annapolis man

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - A man was sentenced to life in prison for ordering the murder of an Annapolis man last January.

Charles Spriggs Jr. was sentenced to two concurrent life sentences plus five years in prison for the murder of 30-year-old Howard Durley in Annapolis' Bywater community, according to the  Anne Arundel County State's Attorney .

"It can be difficult to prove that someone commanded another person to pull the trigger," Anne Arundel County State's Attorney Anne Colt Leitess said in a statement. "But through months of hard work and collaboration with Detective Pyles and the Annapolis Police Department, Assistant State's Attorneys Michelle Smith and M. Virginia Miles proved to a jury that Mr. Spriggs pulled the strings in ordering the killing of Mr. Durley. Justice was served today because of their efforts."

According to the state's attorney office on Jan. 23, 2013, Spriggs and co-defendant William Chase, 20, of Prince George's County appeared at the home of Spriggs' ex girlfriend – the mother of his child – in the Bywater community, where Durley had just left.

The two confronted Durley and Spriggs ordered Chase to bring him a gun. Chase handed the gun to Spriggs, who passed it back and ordered Chase to kill Durley. Chase shot Durley in the chest, then chased Durley and shot him again in the head. Durley, of Annapolis, died at the scene, according to the state's attorney office.

Spriggs was found guilty Nov. 15 in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court  of first-degree murder, use of a handgun in commission of a violent crime, carrying a handgun and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder.

According to the state's attorney office, Chase pleaded guilty to first-degree murder on July 29, 2013 and testified against Spriggs. As part of the plea agreement, the state will seek a life sentence with all but 55 years suspended at sentencing scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Friday.

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