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Man pleads guilty in Lakewood torture case

Post by Stacey Mulick / The News Tribune on March 23, 2012 at 11:32 am with 6 Comments »
March 23, 2012 4:50 pm

A 26-year-old man accused in the 2010 videotaped torture and slaying of another man in Lakewood pleaded guilty Friday.

Michael Crosman entered the plea to one count of first-degree murder. He faces 23 years, nine months to 30 years, 11 months in prison when sentenced March 30.

Pierce County prosecutors allege Crosman helped kidnap Albert Keith Roberts, 50, in July 2010 because he’d stolen a car that contained drugs that belonged to another man.

Roberts was tortured inside a Lakewood apartment and the attack was videotaped. Police obtained a videotape that showed someone shoving a screwdriver into Roberts’ neck at one point. He also was beaten and threatened.

Prosecutors alleged Crosman tried to asphyxiate Roberts, then hit him in the head with a weight-lifting plate. Roberts’ body later was found near Harts Lake in East Pierce County.

Prosecutors originally charged Crosman with aggravated first-degree murder. He pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of first-degree murder.

Deputy prosecutor Steve Penner said he and Crosman’s attorney will make a joint recommendation that Crosman be sentenced to the low end of the prison time he faces.

Six others were charged in the case.

Randy Harbin, accused of ordering Roberts’ kidnapping, died this week of natural causes.

Maalo Samaota, accused of helping Crosman kidnap Roberts, pleaded guilty in November to first-degree murder. He faces 23 to 29 years in prison when sentenced in April.

For others are accused of helping; one awaits trial and three have pleaded guilty.

Leave a comment Comments → 6
  1. serendipity says:

    I do understand we cannot take every case to trial, but how about threatening the defense attorney right up to the steps of a trial? This man will get out of prison alive. That just isn’t just.

    I am certain there is something I don’t understand here, as is often the case. Don’t make such great deals with slimy defense attorneys. Of course if they are civil servant defense attorneys, they are quite underpaid and overworked. So I understand that. Other ones in this county ought to be ashamed of themselves.

    Many private defense attorneys post pictures of themselves with younger women and plates of very expensive wine and food online. It is sickening. I won’t name them of course.

  2. interWOLFone says:

    When you have a cold blooded torture/murder on videotape…this should merit an automatic death penalty.

  3. Cerealkiller says:

    For others are accused??? I do inderstand rushing a story but as a professional journalist I do believe a little care wouldn’t be out of the question. The link I took for this story mentioned a 34 year old not a 26 year old. All that aside, I agree that this is a miscarriage of justice. A plea??? Seriously??? With a smoking gun such as video, no plea should even be on the table. Throw the book at this guy.

  4. fflinstone says:

    wow!i knew the guy who got murdered.he was with my ex for a fast minute,anyway semmed like a lost guy most of us are from time to time but he did not deserve to be torured.remember the good ol days when two men had a problem if it could not be settled with words they got em up there was a winner a looser but everyone lived

  5. surveyor1 says:

    I agree that the sentencing seems a bit on the low side. I will say that I find it hard to generate much concern for the victim though. If one makes the decision to make his living stealing from others, one should be prepared for the possibility that bad things can and will happen.

  6. martion247 says:

    This man that was killed, was my ex. Yes he was a very lost individual with the drug use that he suffered.i have to agree with the aforementioned comment, “What happened to two people fighting it out yet surviving and going there separate ways.” Drug addiction is an illness that many have years battling, but to end up dead because of choices made under the influence of drugs is crazy. Granted taking other peoples property (cars)he did do often, but always brought them back just in his own time frame. Individuals that committed the torturing and killing should get life in prison with out having the option to take a plea. After all Keith did not get a plea for his life, why should they.

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