Jason Thomas Scott, who is charged in the grisly double-murder of a Prince George’s County woman and her daughter, was a prolific bandit, committing 30 robberies dating back to 2002, a federal prosecutor alleged in court Tuesday.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Stacy D. Belf made the accusation in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt during a pretrial hearing for Scott, 28, who is charged federally with three counts of carjacking, sexually assaulting a minor, burglarizing a gun store, and illegally selling stolen guns.
The robberies would have occurred before July 2009, when Scott, of Largo, was locked up on the federal charges. He has remained in custody since.
About a year later, in July 2010, a Prince George’s County grand jury indicted Scott on two counts of murder and other crimes. The grand jury accused Scott of murdering Delores Dewitt, 42, and her daughter Ebony. Their bodies were found inside a burning, stolen car in Largo on March 16, 2009.
Scott is scheduled to go on trial for those murders in Prince George’s County Circuit Court in Upper Marlboro in November.
Police investigators have said Scott is also a person of interest in the double-murder of another mother and daughter from Largo. On Jan. 26, 2009, Karen Lofton, 45, and her daughter Karissa, 16, were found fatally shot inside their locked home.
Police have also said detectives are investigating whether Scott is responsible for a 2008 homicide in which a Bowie woman was shot to death in her home before the house was set on fire.
Belf alleged that Scott committed dozens of robberies during a hearing in which she asked U.S. District Judge Peter J. Messitte to allow the government to present evidence of those crimes during Scott’s federal trial, which is scheduled to begin June 28. Belf did not provide any details about the robberies.
In the federal criminal justice system, judges can allow prosecutors to present evidence of criminal behavior by the defendant which the defendant has not been charged with. Such evidence is inadmissible to show a defendant is bad person, but may be allowed to show another issue in the case, such as a defendant’s motive, intent, preparation, or common scheme.
Messitte denied Belf’s request. The judge said Scott may have committed the other crimes, but to bring them into the trial could confuse jurors and cause them to lose focus on the offenses he is charged with.
The judge also turned away a motion by defense attorney Kobie Flowers to delay the trial. Flowers said he needed additional time to prepare for expert witnesses the government would call to testify about the photos and video that Scott allegedly took of the juvenile girl he allegedly sexually assaulted.
Messitte told Flowers the issue regarding the photos and video was not a new one, noting that the charge was in the indictment handed down in 2010. Messitte said he would authorize $2,400 in federal funds for Flowers to hire a computer expert, if Flowers would fill out the appropriate application.