Published: Wednesday, January 03, 2018 @ 10:07 AM
By: Lauren Pack - Staff Writer
BUTLER COUNTY — The last of three men charged in a Middletown crime spree in the fall of 2016 that ended in the slaying of two people has been sent to prison.
Charles Ray Graham, 28, of 2002 Pearl St., pleaded guilty in November to being part of a criminal gang in Butler County Common Pleas Court.
Graham was one of three men indicted for crimes in late October and November 2016 in Middletown that ended with the deaths of Tiffany Hoskins and Joseph Romano.
Prosecutors say Graham and co-defendants Douglas Best and Derrick Brown were members of gang called the Cincinnati White Boys.
On Tuesday, Judge Greg Stephens sentenced Graham to three years in prison. He was taken away from the courtroom to begin serving his sentence. He faced a maximum of eight years in prison.
Graham was indicted for attempted burglary for allegedly trying to break into Romano’s residence just days before the homicide and participating in a criminal gang. He pleaded guilty to participating in a criminal gang, a second degree felony. The attempted burglary charge was dropped
Douglas Best, 29, of Richmond Street, pleaded guilty in October to two counts of aggravated murder with gun specifications for the death of Romano at his Lafayette Avenue home and for the shooting death of Hoskins, whose body was found inside a Jacoby Avenue house.
In April, Derrick Brown, 22, of 815 Crawford St., pleaded guilty as charged to attempted burglary, aggravated burglary, aggravated robbery and aggravated murder for his part in the death of Romano.
Both men are serving prison sentences of life with the possibility of parole after 51 years.
Romano was shot to death on Nov. 4. He was hit four times by bullets, with three of them striking him in the chest, leg and neck. He was killed in his kitchen at 1517 Lafayette Ave., according to Middletown police.
Hoskins was found shot inside a home at 1507 Jacoby Ave. just hours later on Nov. 5. Middletown firefighters were called to the scene and found flames shooting from the second floor, and Hoskins’ body at the top of the home’s stairway.