Local News

Road rampage killer sentenced to life in prison

Posted March 23, 2010

— A man convicted of running over five people, killing one, during a 2004 hit-and-run rampage was sentenced Tuesday to life in prison.

Jurors found Abdullah El-Amin Shareef, 31, of Raeford, guilty of 10 charges last Wednesday, including one count of first-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder, in the rampage that stretched across three counties.

Shareef could have been sentenced to death for the first-degree murder conviction.

"You should never, ever not be confined," Judge Jim Ammons said.

Salvation Army worker recalls Shareef Jury deliberates life, death for Shareef

Authorities said Shareef stole a city-owned van in Fayetteville on April 14, 2004, hit and injured three men – Robert Fortier, David McCaskill and Gary Weller – in Fayetteville, then ran over Lonel Bass in Linden, killing him. Shareef abandoned the van, took Bass' pickup truck and continued north, authorities said, running  down Seth Thompson in Harnett County before crashing the truck in Fuquay-Varina, where he was arrested.

Shareef pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, and his attorneys argued that he suffered from untreated paranoid schizophrenia at the time of the crimes.

The state argued that Shareef made "conscious decisions" during the incident, running down men who were by themselves and then fleeing to avoid arrest.

Margaret McCaskill, who took the stand following the sentencing, said her husband, 71-year-old David McCaskill, felt guilty for not stopping Shareef.

David McCaskill was walking the couple's two dogs when Shareef hit him. After the vehicle stopped, McCaskill said Shareef then tried to stab him with a pencil.

"I hope you will go and stay in that prison forever so you don't go and hurt anybody else," she said. "We were hoping you would get life in prison so you would have a change of heart in prison."

David McCaskill said as long as Shareef never gets out of jail, he will be happy.

Joan Bass, whose husband was killed in the rampage, told Shareef that he "really messed up" her life.

Weller, who is wheelchair-bound, also spoke.

"If you wouldn't have been gutless that day and said, 'Hey old man, I wanna fight you.' And I would have fought you," he said. "We've been sitting here six weeks listening to your pity party."

In addition to life in prison without the possibility of parole, Shareef was also sentenced to between 297 and 375 months in prison on six other charges. He received 75 days in jail for misdemeanor assault with a deadly weapon.


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  • Bartmeister Mar 24, 2010

    Great, another basket case we have to pay for to sit in prison and be "productive".

  • John Sawtooth Mar 24, 2010

    I can only hope that he will receive a large amount of treatment for his mental illness while he is in prison; because imprisonment is going to really add some intensity to his mental state.

    Unfortunately I don't have many hopes about our prison system doing beneficial things.

  • raggy831 Mar 24, 2010

    sorry but I think he should be put to death...I have had mental health problems off and on all my life, but I have never gotten in a car and run people over...my parents got me some help...why did his parents not get him help?

  • Lightfoot3 Mar 24, 2010

    “You would probably think differently if it was your loved one who was run over & killed by this person. “ – scooter13

    Of course, because then we would have a bias. And someone that has experienced a loved one being mentally ill, even if temporarily, would also think differently.

    It was an eye opening experience, that’s for sure. Actually had to tie the person down (i.e. restraints) until they came to their senses. Thought everyone, doctors, nurses, etc, was in on a plot to kill them. Looked me straight in my eyes and threatened to kill me.

    I don’t know how to balance punishment/vengeance/revenge with the mentally ill. I don’t have an answer, but I know it’s not clear cut “an eye for an eye”.

  • BeenHereSince67 Mar 23, 2010

    Now is this man's "life sentence": A- "Life" - as in until he dies, or B- something else defined by lawyers and judges and legislators?

  • scooter13 Mar 23, 2010

    You would probably think differently if it was your loved one who was run over & killed by this person.

    Mental illness is not an excuse... If he was sick, where was his family to get him treatment?

    He still committed a murder and injured others. They could have easily been killed too.

    If you want to keep him alive, then you pay for his prison housing. I would rather my taxes go to education, than keeping this sorry excuse of a human being alive.

  • packfan79 Mar 23, 2010

    So not only do we taxpayers have to help pay for the victims, to which I do not object, we are going to feed, house, clothe, and educate this garbage for, theoretically, the rest of his life. Thanks all you liberal whiners out there. Death penalty is definitely warranted in this type of case.

  • wbearp Mar 23, 2010

    Life = a few years!

  • csplantlover Mar 23, 2010

    Never know what goes on in somebody's mind - just some other piece of garbage to have to support for another 30-40 years.......what's new.....yawn..........

  • ncmickey Mar 23, 2010

    A fair sentence taking into account his mental illness.