New Jersey Man Free After 30 Year Sentence Murders Again

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Steven Pratt, after completing a 30 year sentence for murder, returned to his Atlantic City home to a party in his honor only to turn the festivities into tragedy with the horrific murder of his mother who planned the celebration.

 

Less than two days after Pratt, 45, was released from maximum security prison where he had been incarcerated since his conviction for first degree murder of his neighbor Michael Anderson, he returned to his home in Atlantic City, New Jersey to a party hosted by his mother, Gwendolyn, 65.

At some point the reunion became heated and with no specific details Pratt bludgeoned his mother to death.

At his arraignment, Pratt, an African American, a grown man who spent the majority of his life in a Maximum Security prison, bowed his head in apparent contrition admitted he failed, he was guilty and wept. He said he did not want a trial.

Pratt’s criminal record is not one that prosecutors can present with traditional courtroom theatrics. No arm long rap sheet, in and out of juvie court where this day his expected end, Pratt was a first offender.

Raised by a single mother, he was in his own eyes the man of the house. On the day of his first murder, he and his posse, a few neighborhood micro thugs, boys about his own age all on the fringes of trouble, were smoking pot in the hallway of their building, which at the time still held the full penalty of the law, and one-upping each other for bragging rights of whatever subject they were talking about.

The hallway conversation was punctuated with loud boisterous laughter and after several neighbors asked the boys to move, they progressed to the lower floors. Eventually, the fun high from weed became ugly as sometimes does for the drunk. A fight broke out overheard by several neighbors, which resulted in loud noises, loud enough to summon Michael Anderson, a sort of father figure to Pratt, from his apartment.

Pratt concerned at 15 his reputation would be dissed went to his apartment and came out with a lead pipe and attacked Anderson, who took the pipe from him and court records said he defended himself against the boy by punching him in the face.

Court records indicate Pratt left the building with the intent of “getting a piece” to “serve” someone. According to court documents ‘“serve” is a Muslim expression meaning the person “served” would not survive the day.”’

By the end of the fall day in October 1984, Steven Pratt would make good on that threat. After securing a weapon from one of his homeboys, Pratt returned to the apartment of Anderson, knocked on the door. When Anderson opened Pratt fired twice. Anderson was mortally wounded and died two days later.

Pratt was sentenced to 30 years in a maximum security prison, ordered to serve the full term without parole. In his appeal he used his age at the time of the commission of the crime as grounds. He was denied.

In October 2014, Steven Pratt was a free man. Young enough at 45 to start over, to begin again. Heading home to Atlantic City. The Jersey Shoreline, to some of the most beautiful stretch of beaches in the world, to freedom, Pratt after a life inside couldn’t handle the pressure.

A conversation on the future may have been the trigger that caused Pratt to explode. In the heat of the moment, thirty years of frustration, paranoia, hell from life in the Big House, came out and Gwendolyn, who by all accounts was a “good” woman was dead.

Expert have weighed in on Juvenile incarceration citing the Pratt Case especially as violent youth offenders are increasing exponentially. The recidivism rate, the statistical determination pronouncing lifetime behaviors or the tendency for a reoccurring criminal life on the youth offender isn’t an anomaly. In the Pratt Case, the time frame is.

In February 2016, Pratt was sentenced to 25 years with no parole for the murder of his mother Gwendolyn.

Image courtesy of google images.

Additional sources: New Jersey Appellate.

 

Haute Tease

  • Academy Names Edgar Aguirre Director, Talent Development and Inclusion

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today the appointment of Edgar Aguirre as its Director, Talent Development and Inclusion. Aguirre will become an integral member of the Academy's education and outreach team.  

  • Hosts Announced For “The Oscars® Backstage” on OSCAR.COM

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    This year's "The Oscars® Backstage" on Oscar.com, which is the ultimate second screen experience for fans watching the show will be hosted by a multi-talented group of TV personalities. A live feed of the Director's Cut will be distributed via ABC News, AOL, Yahoo and Comcast Xfinity.  

  • Broad Green Pictures Acquires Rights to The Intouchables Directors’ New Film, SAMBA

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    LOS ANGELES (September 18, 2014) – Broad Green Pictures (BGP) announced today that they have acquired the US distribution rights to Samba, Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano’s follow-up to their 2012 smash-hit The Intouchables. BGP plans to release the film in the second half of 2015 in theaters across the United States and build upon the incredible box-office success of its predecessor.

     
  • The Academy Steps Behind The Score With Composers Gustavo Dudamel, Gustavo Santaolalla and John Williams

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    LOS ANGELES, CA – Composers Gustavo Dudamel, Gustavo Santaolalla and John Williams will gather at the Academy for "Behind the Score: The Art of the Film Composer," on Monday, July 21, at 7:30 p.m. at the Bing Theater in Los Angeles.  In a conversation hosted by Tavis Smiley, the illustrious trio will discuss significant musical moments in film that have inspired their work as they examine the art and process of creating a film score as well as the director-composer collaboration. 

     
  • Kaleidoscope Launches Funding Platform for Premium VR Content; Helped Creators Raise Over $3 Million From Network Of Industry Leaders

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Even when René Pinnell launched Kaleidoscope's virtual reality festival in 2015, his vision had always been to build a funding platform to help independent VR creators and studios raise money for their original VirtualReality projects.

Crime

  • East Liverpool Heroin Overdose Victims Survive

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    James Lee Acord and Rhonda Pasek, the couple whose graphic overdose picture taken by responding officers has gone viral, survived the incident and after hospitalization were reprimanded to the local county jail until court appearances.

     
  • Cincinnati Boy, 8, Commits Suicide After School Bullying

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    An eight-year-old Cincinnati boy committed suicide January, 2017, after a bullying incident in the boy’s bathroom at his school left him unconscious for nearly eight minutes. He hung himself with a necktie two days later.

     
  • Miami Woman Savagely Beaten Remains Comatose

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Danielle Jones, 23, a Miami, Florida caterer, is clinging to life after she was savagely beaten, bludgeoned, strangled, slashed and left for dead on Valentine's Day, which is also her birthday, by her roommate of one week that she found on Craigslist.

     
  • Decorated Virginia State Police Trooper Murdered, Two Others Injured, in Random Shooting

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Trooper Chad P. Dermyer, who one year ago was receiving an accommodation from his superiors, was shot and killed at the Richmond Greyhound Station by an ex-con who opened fire, in the crowded terminal, after a brief verbal encounter.  

     
  • Justice Watch: Prosecutor to Seek Death Penalty in Toddler Torture Murder

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Scott McMillan, the toddler murdered by his mother and her lover of one month, was buried one week ago in a tiny casket supplied by a local mortuary in a graveside service attended by his remaining family members, aunts, uncles, grandmother.  

Theatre, Music, Books

  • Living A Life That Matters: A Memoir of the Marquis de Lafayette Review – Surprisingly Interesting

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Penned by renowned Civil Rights attorney David M. Weitzman, Living A Life That Matters will not jump off the shelf for the causal bookstore window shopper. The title, the image all suggest an intellectual read reserved for professors, scholars, politicians and the like.  

  • BACKSTAGE PAST: The High Times of Legendary Rock Promoter Barry Fey

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    BACKSTAGE PAST, the auto bio road trip from legendary promoter Barry Fey, reveals the dressing room romps of Rock n' Roll royalty from a career that spans forty years of music madness.

     
  • An A-List Line-Up of the Most Acclaimed African American Talent Join For One Night Celebrating the Spoken Word with Music and Dance

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    WordTheatre’s Storytales: Featuring celebrities performing stories from acclaimed African-American author John Edgar Wideman’s literary anthology ‘Briefs’ at the Ford Amphitheatre Saturday October 6, 2012.

     
  • Blondie and Garbage To Co-Headline Rage And Rapture Summer 2017 Tour (Music/Tix Links)

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Blondie & Garbage announced their North American tour will kick off on July 5th in Saratoga, CA and wrap on August 12th in Dallas, TX. John Doe & Exene Cervenka will provide support on the first leg of the tour and Deap Vally for the second.

     
  • The Art Of Discovery - Photographs By WireImage Co-Founder Jeff Vespa

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    LOS ANGELES, Ca. USA -  Jeff Vespa, co-founder of the largest entertainment photo agency in the world, WireImage and founder of Verge, will release his first monograph, The Art of Discovery, this October on Rizzoli International Publications.