Man pleads guilty to murder in Latisha Frazier case

A 21-year-old man from Southeast Washington pleaded guilty Friday to second-degree murder and kidnapping charges in connection with the summer 2010 beating death of District teenager Latisha Frazier.

Laurence Kamal Hassan, 22, is one of six defendants - three male and three female - charged in Frazier’s slaying. Four already have pleaded guilty and two are scheduled for trial.

According to prosecutors, on Aug. 1, 2010, Hassan and his co-defendants invited Frazier to an apartment in the 1700 block of Trenton Place SE to “teach her a lesson” because they suspected she had stolen $900 from one of them. They developed a plan to lure Frazier, 18, to Hassan’s bedroom, where they would beat her.

The next day, the group gathered to carry out the plan. Frazier was invited to the apartment and Hassan led her to his bedroom. Frazier tried to leave, but Hassan blocked her escape, prosecutors said.

The group began hitting Frazier, before Hassan left the bedroom, prosecutors said. The beating continued without Hassan until Frazier cried for it to stop.

Even after it had stopped for a time, two of the men in the group then stepped in and punched and kicked Frazier, prosecutors said.

The defendants then decided to bind Frazier, and Hassan went to the local hardware store to buy tape, prosecutors said. After he returned to the apartment, the group bound Frazier by her wrists and ankles and put her in a closet. At that time, Frazier was still alive, and crying. Later that day, however, someone checked on her and reported to the group that she was dead, prosecutors said.

After learning Frazier had died, Hassan and the group tried to figure out what to do with her body, prosecutors said. The initial plan was to dismember her, put her in a container and dispose of her in a park. The next day, Hassan scouted for a park in the District at which to dispose of Frazier’s body, the prosecutors said.

Hassan was present while members of the group tried to dismember the body in a bathtub. Ultimately, though, Hassan ordered his friends to remove Frazier’s body from the house. Her remains were thrown into a dumpster behind his home. Trash collectors emptied the contents in a landfill and authorities have not been able to locate Frazier’s remains.

Hassan is scheduled to be sentenced in January in D.C. Superior Court.

Keith Alexander covers crime, specifically D.C. Superior Court cases for The Washington Post. He has covered dozens of crime stories from Banita Jacks, the Washington woman charged with killing her four daughters, to the murder trial of slain federal intern Chandra Levy.

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