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Murder Ink

By Anna Ditkoff | Posted 12/16/2009

Murders this Week: 6

Murders this Year: 224

The death of Josue Zelaya, an 18-year-old Hispanic male, has been removed from the Baltimore Police Department's official homicide tally because it has been ruled an accident. Zelaya was shot to death at a friend's house in the 400 block of North Glover Street on Nov. 15 when a gun allegedly held by Roque Ramirez, a 19-year-old Hispanic male, accidentally discharged.

Two more deaths resulting from old shootings have been added to the homicide roll this week. Dagas McGill, a 39-year-old African-American man, was one of two people shot in the 2300 block of Etting Street in Druid Heights on Sept. 17, 1999. Both were taken to an area hospital in critical condition. McGill, who had been shot in the neck and back, died on Sept. 11 of this year. The other victim, who was hit in the chest, neck, chin, and arm, is still alive.

Shannon Colbert, a 32-year-old African-American man, was found lying on the pavement in the 1400 block of East Preston Street on Aug. 14, 2008. He had been shot in the right side and was taken to a hospital and rushed into surgery. Someone called Colbert's sister to let her know her brother had been shot saying, "Freak did it." On Aug. 21, police arrested Derian Hampton, an 20-year-old African-American male, for the shooting. Colbert died on Nov. 24 of this year as a result of the shooting. Hampton was found not guilty on all charges on April 8 of this year. Still, Colbert's homicide is considered closed by the police.

Thirteen deaths resulting from assaults in previous years have been added to the homicide rolls this year; seven of them in the last month.

There was also a fatal police-involved shooting this week. The Violent Crime Impact Division was conducting an investigation in the 2300 block of West Baltimore Street near the West Baltimore MARC station at 12:11 a.m. on Dec. 9. The division had received a tip that Byron Matthews, a 20-year-old African-American man, had a large quantity of drugs and was armed. Police approached Matthews, but he ran, circling the block. When he came back onto the block he allegedly pulled out a gun and pointed it at police. The officers fired at Matthews, hitting him in the upper body. He was taken to an area hospital where he died at 1:04 a.m. None of the officers were injured. This is the 21st police-involved shooting this year; the seventh fatal one. There were 28 police-involved shootings last year, which resulted in 13 fatalities.

Friday, Dec. 11

9:52 p.m. Dante Johnson-Turner, a 29-year-old African-American man, was shot in the 4700 block of Liberty Heights Avenue in Northwest Baltimore. He fell to the ground and the shooter stood over him and shot him several more times. Johnson-Turner died the next day at 7:37 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 12

12:57 a.m. A man and his adult daughter were upstairs in their home in the 3300 block of Woodstock Avenue in Belair-Edison. The daughter heard a commotion downstairs and went to check it out. There was a man with a gun at the bottom of the stairs. When he saw the woman, he shot her. She was able to go upstairs and tell her father what had happened. He went downstairs and found his son Glen Johnson, a 32-year-old African-American man, shot. The gunmen had fled the scene. Glen Johnson and his sister were taken to an area hospital. She was treated and released. He died at 1:32 a.m. According to police, there were no signs of forced entry.

7:17 a.m. An unidentified African-American man was found in the rear of the 2400 block of Shirley Avenue in the Greenspring neighborhood. He had been shot and was dead.


The man killed during a home invasion on Dec. 2 has been identified at David Allen Monath, a 66-year-old Caucasian man and Army veteran.

On Dec. 2, police arrested Derrick Reed, a 33%u2013year-old African-American man, for the June 3, 2007, murder of Curtis Alexander, a 28-year-old African-American man. Alexander was shot repeatedly in the 1900 block of West Lanvale Street in Midtown-Edmondson.

Phillip Queen, a 29-year-old African-American man, was sentenced to 30 years in prison on Dec. 8 for the murder of Jabari Stocks, a 3-year-old African-American male. Queen pleaded guilty earlier this year. Queen was babysitting Stocks on June 8, 2007, while the boy's mother, Queen's girlfriend, was at work. Queen called the mother and told her the boy had choked. She rushed home and took her son to the hospital, but he was dead by the time they arrived. An autopsy revealed that the Stocks did not choke to death. His head had been slammed against an object, fatally damaging his brain.

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