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Suspect in Duke Student's Slaying Indicted for Robbery

Posted February 20, 2008
Updated February 21, 2008

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— Stephen Lavance Oates, 19, charged in a Duke University graduate student’s death, was indicted Wednesday in a series of armed robberies.

Oates is under indictment in the death of Abhijit Mahato, 29, who was found shot to death inside his apartment on Jan. 19.

Prosecutors believe Oates robbed Mahato at gunpoint and stole $200, a wallet and cell phone from him. They believe that Oates held up three other people at gunpoint that same day.

Oates and William Dozia Smith, 20, of Anthony Street, were indicted Wednesday for the role police charge they played in a series of robberies going back to November. Many of the victims were Hispanic. They shot one robbery victim and injured another, police alleged.


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  • Dr. Dataclerk Feb 21, 2008

    Several years in prison should show him he had no right to take a life, now he will face the consequences of being lock up forever. Another one off the streets. Who cares if the prison or jails are packed. They (criminals) don't care and doing everything they can to get to a prison. So I say, LOCK THEM UP!

  • skinnycow Feb 21, 2008

    And then again, I could be wrong. It has been known to happen. If so, then I beg of you a thousand pardons and thank you for your correction. It is much appreciated.

  • skinnycow Feb 21, 2008

    I agree. But adults can act juvenile and they can also be referred to as delinquents. Either way they are criminals that should be charged accordingly. No need to be sorry. Nothing wrong with my toes. I appreciate your concern but it is not necessary. So again I will state, have a great day!

  • PikeMom4real Feb 21, 2008

    A delinquent is often used to refer to a juvenile who commits a minor criminal act.
    So,graciously sorry,Did mean to step on sore toes.geez

  • skinnycow Feb 21, 2008


    1 a: a delinquent act b: conduct that is out of accord with accepted behavior or the law;

    I didnt call them juveniles based on their age. I stand by my post. You, can have a great day!

  • garnertoy Feb 21, 2008

    put him in jail and throw away the key

  • PikeMom4real Feb 21, 2008

    These are NOT deliquents.They are 19 & 20 years old.I hope they get every day they deserve.

  • skinnycow Feb 21, 2008

    All of these young lives ended over senseless violence. Stories like this seem to be all we read about lately. A life isnt worth $200.00 and a cell phone. Hoping these delinquents are locked up for a very long time.