Man Shot by Official Talks to His Lawyer

By Eric Rich
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, February 7, 2007

A furniture deliveryman who was shot last month by a Prince George's County homeland security official has recovered to the point where he is able to speak, an attorney for the man said yesterday.

Attorney Michael J. Winkelman declined to reveal what Robert White told him during a brief conversation at Prince George's Hospital Center, saying that doing so might jeopardize a criminal investigation into the shooting by Keith A. Washington, a veteran county police officer and deputy director of homeland security.

But White's ability to provide his account of the shooting is crucial because co-worker Brandon D. Clark, who was also shot by Washington as they delivered a Marlo Furniture bedroom set to his Accokeek home Jan. 24, died without speaking.

White, 36, of the District and Clark, 22, of Oxon Hill were unarmed, police have said.

Police initially said that Washington, a former driver for County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D), apparently acted in self-defense and that Clark and White would probably be charged with assault. Police soon backed off that statement, saying they would draw no conclusions until investigations of the incident were completed.

The case has attracted wide attention because of a pattern of previous complaints against Washington, 45. He has not responded to messages seeking comment since the incident.

Although police have requested an interview with White, Winkelman said, White has not recovered enough to make that possible. "He's still medicated," Winkelman said. "He certainly can't have a meaningful conversation with anyone at this time."

White has been moved out of the intensive care unit but remains in serious condition, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Clark's family will hold a candlelight vigil at his mother's home in Capitol Heights at 6:30 p.m. Friday.

Staff writers Rosalind S. Helderman and Ruben Castaneda contributed to this report.

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