MURDER USA: Prison wasn’t a safe space for convicted armed robber; Ronnie Lionel Harris killed in the big house
HAGERSTOWN, MD. – Serving time in the Maryland prison at Hagerstown, a District of Columbia resident convicted of multiple counts of assault, gun charges and armed robbery met his maker instead of serving his full term of eighty years in prison.
The Maryland State Police report that they are investigating the homicide of a prison inmate who was incarcerated at the Maryland Correctional Training Center located at 18800 Roxbury Road, Hagerstown, Md. The prisoner was identified as Ronnie Lionel Harris, inmate #00456534, DOB, Feb. 14, 1963. Harris, 56, was formerly a resident of 7th Street in Washington, D.C. before his conviction in 2012 in Prince George’s County Circuit Court.
Maryland State Police are continuing their investigation into an assault that has now resulted in the death of a Maryland prison inmate who was found unresponsive on a housing tier May 29, 2019, at the Maryland Correctional Training Center in Hagerstown.
The inmate, identified as Ronnie Lionel Harris, 56, was transported to Georgetown University Hospital where he died around 4 p.m. May 30, 2019. Harris’ body has been transported to the District of Columbia Medical Examiner’s Office for an autopsy to determine the cause and manner of death.
Maryland State Police Homicide Unit investigators are conducting the investigation with assistance from the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services Internal Investigations Unit.
On Aug. 15, 2012, Harris was sentenced by Prince George’s County Circuit Court Judge Sean D. Wallace to Count 1 for a period of 20 years. Count 2 merges into Count 1. Count 3 merges into Count 1. Count 4 for a period of 20 years; consecutive to Count 1, first 5 years without parole pursuant to Criminal Law Article 4-204 (a), Count 5 for a period of 20 years consecutive to Count 4, Count 6 merges into Count 5, Count 7 merges into Count 5, Count 8 for a period of 20 years; consecutive to Count 5, first 5 years without parole pursuant to Criminal Law Article 4-204 (a). Sentence to be served consecutive to any other cases in any jurisdiction. 1 year 209 days credit to be given.
Harris was represented by attorney George Harper, of Upper Marlboro, Md. After arriving in prison and also serving a sentence for another crime in West Virginia, Harris evidently fell into the open arms of a jailhouse lawyer who filed appeals in two circuits of the United States Court of Appeals and was denied his appeal on March 9, 2016.
When Ronnie Harris was incarcerated in the Washington DC Jail on April 9, 1991, a detainer was filed by Maryland, according to court records. Harris was indicted for armed robbery in Prince Georges County Circuit Court by the Grand Jury.
On August 27, 1992, Harris withdrew his plea of not guilty and entered a plea of guilty to Count 3 of Robbery and was sentenced to the Maryland prison system for ten years, concurrent with the sentence he was serving at that time in the District Jail.