BALTIMORE — U.S. District Judge Catherine C. Blake Thursday sentenced Tayvon Dobson, 23, of Cambridge, to serve 28 years in federal prison for the attempted murder of a federal officer and using a gun during the murder attempt.
Dobson shot Wicomico Sheriff’s Deputy Thomas Funk Feb. 29, 2012, while Funk was one of eight officers working as a U.S. Marshal’s task force to serve warrants in the region. Dobson had a warrant pending for multiple charges including first-degree assault and arson threat, which have since been placed on the stet docket of Dorchester County Circuit Court, where they could be tried one day.
The morning of the shooting, Dobson was in a home on Hubbard Street. After he shot Funk in the arm, he and other officers traded gunfire before he surrendered after a standoff of several hours.
“Law enforcement officers put their lives on the line every day to protect us from violent criminals. I am grateful to the local, state and federal agencies that brought Tayvon Dobson to justice,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein in announcing the sentence along with Dorchester County State’s Attorney William Jones, Cambridge Police Chief Kenneth W. Malik, Dorchester Sheriff James Phillips Jr., Special Agent in Charge Steven Gerido of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — Baltimore Field Division, U.S. Marshal Johnny Hughes and Maryland State Police Superintendent Col. Marcus Brown.
Prosecutors said that Feb. 29, 2012 at the home on Hubbard Street, officers shouted at Dobson, who was inside Apartment 1 there, to open the door. Instead, they said, he began shooting at officers outside the residence and at their unmarked police vehicles.
“After the task force detective in Apartment 2 realized that he could not safely escape that apartment through the hallway, he barricaded the bedroom door with a mattress and dresser,” prosecutors said Thursday in recalling the incident.
“Shots continued to ring out from Apartment 1 as other officers yelled to Dobson to surrender. After several minutes of gunfire, the detective heard Dobson reload a firearm. Dobson began to shoot again. The detective (Funk) was able to see into the hallway and the front door of Apartment 1. Seconds later, the detective saw Dobson leave the apartment and stop in the hallway. Dobson saw the detective no more than 15 feet away and began to fire. The detective fired back while still barricaded in Apartment 2,” prosecutors said.
“After several volleys of gunfire, the detective felt a sharp pain in his left shoulder but continued to fire at Dobson. When Dobson left the hallway,” prosecutors said, “the detective saw blood rapidly coming from his wound. The detective broke through the apartment window, rolled out to the ground and ran to safety. He later underwent surgery.”
Prosecutors said Dobson continued to shoot at the remaining officers. “Four hours after law enforcement first entered the building, Dobson finally surrendered.” They said the house where Dobson had been staying was riddled with bullet holes, adding that, “Three firearms were seized, two of which had been used to fire from inside the apartment, as well as a magazine, several rounds of live ammunition and numerous spent shell casings and projectiles.”
In announcing Dobson’s sentence, Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Debra Dwyer, who prosecuted the case, and commended the ATF, Dorchester County State’s Attorney’s Office, Capital Area Regional Fugitive Task Force of the U.S. Marshal’s Service, the Cambridge Police Department, Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office, the U.S. Marshal’s Service and Maryland State Police for their work in the investigation.