BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A 19-year-old man allegedly committed two carjackings within three days back in June, using tool sales on an app to lure victims, officials say.
Michael Wedington, Jr., of Baltimore, is charged with conspiracy, taking a motor vehicle by threats or violence, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence, in connection with two carjackings.
Wedington has been ordered to be detained pending a detention hearing on December 18.
According to the affidavit filed in support of the criminal complaint, Wedington allegedly was a part of two carjackings on June 8 and June 10, 2019.
Each time, the victim was picking up tools they had bought through the “OfferUp” app, which connects local buyers and sellers with products.
When the victims would arrive at the meeting spot, they were taken somewhere else where the victims were robbed and their vehicles were taken.
During the first carjacking on June 8, the victim got to the second location and was approached by three men who appeared to load the victim’s van with the tools, but then one suspect armed with a handgun allegedly forced the victim into the back of his vehicle and then all three suspects got in too.
The suspects then allegedly stole the victim’s wallet, cash, driver’s license, debit card and cell phone.
The affidavit also alleges that one suspect put a handgun in the victim’s mouth and demanded the PIN number to his debit card. The suspects then drove to a gas station in northwest Baltimore with the victim still inside the van, and one of the suspects used the PIN number to steal cash from an ATM.
The victim escaped the van and called the police. The stolen vehicle was found five days later in Baltimore.
During the second carjacking on June 10, the victim was lured to the 2400 block of West Lexington Street, also through the “OfferUp” app, and told to go to the back alley behind West Fayette Street, where two suspects approached him- both armed with handguns.
The two men allegedly took the victim’s wallet, which had over $1,000 in cash, the victim’s two cell phones and Toyota Sienna.
Both victims identified Wedington in a photo array and his fingerprint was recovered from the van in the second carjacking when it was located.
Wedington’s home was searched on November 1 where law enforcement found a Toyota car key, firearms, replica pellet guns, clothes and cell phones.
If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison for conspiracy to take a motor vehicle by threats or violence; a maximum of 15 years in federal prison for taking a motor vehicle by threats or violence; and a mandatory minimum of seven years in federal prison, consecutive to any other sentence, and up to life in federal prison for each of two counts of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence.