Jail Time For Robbery, Assault

OCEAN CITY — Three local residents arrested on robbery and assault charges last November after strong-arming a pizza delivery driver and stealing his money and wallet each pleaded guilty in Circuit Court this week to various charges and were sentenced to significant amounts of jail time.

Around 10:30 p.m. on Nov. 26, 2010, an Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officer responded to the area of 74th Street for a reported strong-arm robbery. Upon arrival, the officer met with a victim who told police he was a Domino’s Pizza delivery driver and that he had just been assaulted and robbed.

The victim said one of the suspects had placed him in a chokehold and thrown him to the ground while the other suspect grabbed the money and wallet from his pants pockets. According to the victim, the two suspects then fled south through an alley between 73rd and 74th streets.

While the first officer was investigating the reported robbery and assault, another OCPD officer had stopped a black Ford Crown Victoria in the area of 71st Street for speeding and negligent driving. The second officer told the first officer the two individuals in the vehicle appeared to match the descriptions provided by the robbery victim.

The victim was transported to the 71st Street area to identify the suspects. Based on the physical appearances of the suspects, along with the clothing they were wearing, the victim positively identified the suspects as Cassandra Pike, 20, of Ocean City, and Mark Scaniffe, 18, of Berlin.

The victim told police he had seen Pike and Scaniffe and the Crown Victoria earlier in the evening when he was making a delivery in the Jamestown Rd. area. Another officer reported he had been called to Jamestown Rd. earlier in the evening to investigate a call about suspicious persons and a dark Crown Victoria.

Based on the evidence and the testimony and descriptions provided by the victim, Pike and Scaniffe were arrested and each was charged with three counts of felony robbery, theft and second-degree assault. During a follow-up investigation, OCPD detectives learned a third suspect, identified as Brandon M. Hilliard, 22, of Berlin, was involved in the strong-arm robbery and was later arrested.

Last week, Scaniffe pleaded guilty to robbery and assault and was sentenced to a combined 17 years in jail, all but four years suspended. Pike pleaded guilty to robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery and was sentenced to a combined six years, all but nine months suspended. Hilliard pleaded guilty to robbery and was sentenced to six years in jail, all but six months suspended.