Youth records sought for convicted killer of 4-year-old in Struthers

YOUNGSTOWN — The attorney for Brandon Crump Jr., the man convicted in the shooting death of 4-year-old Rowan Sweeney, has filed a motion for records related to all interactions Crump had with Mahoning County Children Services during his youth.

Crump, 21, was convicted in February of the aggravated murder of Rowan and 15 other charges related to the Sept. 21, 2020, shootings of the boy and four adults at a home on Perry Street in Struthers.

He is scheduled to be sentenced June 26.

Crump’s attorney, Lou DeFabio, earlier received permission to hire an expert witness to evaluate and testify, if necessary, on matters that include Crump’s age and its hallmark features when the crime was committed, intellectual capacity, his family home environment at the time of the crime, history of trauma and school history.

Because Crump was 17 at the time of the offenses, the judge is required to consider additional factors not necessary for adult offenders, according to the filing.

DeFabio cited an Ohio law that “codifies” rulings related to an offender’s youth, stating it “mandates that a trial court consider the offender’s family and home environment and other issues.”

Mahoning County Common Pleas Court Judge Anthony D’Apolito is presiding over the case.

The children’s services records are “of paramount importance” in the assessment the expert witness in the case will carry out, DeFabio stated, adding they are also “relevant to his counsel’s presentation of mitigation at a sentencing hearing.”

The filing asks if the judge is unwilling to allow the defense to obtain the records, he orders they be provided to the judge to inspect them “to determine whether or not the records must be released to the defendant.”

Crump is one of three defendants convicted in the case. His was the one case that went to trial.

Co-defendant Kimonie Bryant, 27, reached a plea agreement that called for a sentence of 20 years to life in prison, but prosecutors have alleged Bryant failed to meet the requirements of his plea agreement by lying, and they want to argue for a longer sentence.

The other co-defendant Andre McCoy Jr., 24, also reached a plea agreement that sentences him to 15 years to life in prison.

Crump and Bryant drove to a home on Perry Street to rob Yarnell Green Jr. of cash, prosecutors said. Bryant drove the car as Crump entered the house, shot all four adults inside and killed Rowan, then ran with cash, prosecutors said.

Bryant’s sentencing is set for 9:30 a.m. July 2; McCoy’s sentencing is set for 9:30 a.m. July 10. McCoy was one of the four adults shot in the home, but text messages indicate he was complicit in the robbery.

Green was shot to death outside a downtown Youngstown bar in September 2022.

Have an interesting story? Contact Ed Runyan by email at erunyan@vindy.com. Follow us on X, formerly Twitter, @TribToday.


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