Acquitted of murder in April, man gets more jail time

La Plata, MD – Bruce Matthew Lyles Jr., 30 of Waldorf, was back in a familiar setting Tuesday, Aug. 4 when he appeared before Charles County Circuit Court Judge Amy J. Bragunier on charges of driving while under the influence of a controlled dangerous substance.

Lyles narrowly escaped a first-degree murder charge back in April when a jury returned a verdict of not guilty following a dramatic weeklong trial. He was sentenced to 13 years and six months in May for violating his probation.

Charles County Assistant State’s Attorney Frank Granados told Bragunier that this particular charge came from an incident that occurred Jan. 3, 2012 when an off-duty Charles County deputy saw a silver Cadillac proceeding on Billingsley Road east of the railroad tracks going in excess of 100 miles per hour.

When the deputy gave pursuit, the driver sped away, at one point driving full bore into oncoming traffic.

“There were several near collisions, including a dump truck,” Granados said.

At one point, the driver bailed out of the car and fled on foot.

“Mr. Lyles shucked off his clothes and laid down nude in the middle of the roadway,” the prosecutor noted.

After officers covered the nude man with a blanket, he said. Police found marijuana and PCP in the car.

“At one point he ranged from being calm to combative,” Granados stated, adding that the man threatened to kill the officers. Deputies found upon further investigation that Lyles had no license.

“A lot of things have gone right for Mr. Lyles and a lot of things have gone wrong,” said defense attorney Monte Montgomery. “He is serving a 13-and-a-half year sentence. That is no mere slap on the wrist. He has taken responsibility for his actions.”

“I’m here today to own up to it,” Lyles said. “It was an off-duty police officer. I didn’t know who it was.”

“When someone comes up behind you with lights flashing red and blue, chances are it’s a police officer,” Granados quipped.

Bragunier tacked one year and a day onto Lyles’ current sentence, and told him he would be on five years of supervised probation following his release.

Contact Joseph Norris at

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