Dimitrios G. Prassos, charged in connection with the robbery that resulted in the shooting death of his father, a popular Ellicott City, Md., restaurant owner, was ordered held in the Howard County Detention Center yesterday in lieu of $20,000 bond.
Assistant State's Attorney Richard O'Connor said Prassos would appear for arraignment after a grand jury meets next week to consider the charges against him. Prassos, 23, has been charged with conspiracy to commit robbery. His father, George Prassos, owner of the The Pirate's Cove restaurant, was shot to death Aug. 2 during a robbery there.
O'Connor said Prassos has been convicted of drunk driving three times and also has been on probation for minor drug offenses.
After yesterday's bond hearing, a lawyer who said he had represented Prassos during his drunk driving cases recalled how the young man's father had asked him to "look after" his son.
"He said, 'My boy's in bad shape. Look after him,' " said attorney William Glasgow. "He said, 'He doesn't understand, but I really love him.' "
Gus Papanikos, a waiter at The Pirate's Cove, said that Prassos and his father used to fight frequently over money and the younger Prassos' life style. On at least one occasion their conflict had erupted into a fistfight, he said.
Papanikos added that Prassos and his older sister Athena had gone to court recently to determine who would take over their father's restaurant, and that Prassos was disturbed when a judge awarded the entire business to his sister. She was "extremely upset" by her brother's arrest, Papanikos said.
Also appearing at the bond hearing was William C. Ray Jr., who has been charged with murder, robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery in connection with George Prassos' slaying. Police said they were led to Ray after several anonymous tipsters identified him as the person whose likeness appeared on a police sketch of the robbery suspect. He was transferred to the custody of state officials from a prison in Baltimore, where he is already serving a sentence for drunk driving, police said.
Police said that Prassos and Ray were seen together on the night before George Prassos died and several times after, including one occasion when the two men reportedly were seen carrying large amounts of cash in a restaurant.
O'Connor said investigators were uncertain how much money was taken during the robbery but estimated it to be between $3,000 and $8,000.