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Murder Ink

By Anna Ditkoff | Posted 12/30/2009

Murders this Week: 8
Murders this Year: 235

Two deaths were added to homicide rolls this week, putting the city one homicide above last year's total of 234. Police were called to the 2800 block of Kentucky Avenue in Belair-Edison for a child not breathing at 2:30 p.m. on Dec. 19. When they arrived, the child's father was performing CPR on her. Janaya Wallace, a 1-year-old African-American girl, was taken to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead. The baby's father said he put Wallace to sleep at 11:30 p.m. the night before on the couch in the basement used as her bed. When he woke up at noon that day he said she was still snoring. At 2:15 p.m. he went to the basement to wake her up and found her not breathing with blue lips. Police saw scrapes on both sides of the baby's neck as well as bruises on her forehead and cheeks. The medical examiner ruled her death a homicide by beating. Wallace is the 14th minor murdered this year, but the first under the age of 14.

On Oct. 18, 2008, a contractor working on a house in the 1900 block of East Lanvale Street found bones in the basement. The skeleton was later identified as belonging to Trina Johnson, an African-American female. Johnson was last seen by her family on Oct. 6, 2003, the day before her 22nd birthday. The medical examiner recently ruled her death to be a homicide due to asphyxiation.

Monday, Dec. 21

12:20 a.m. Clifford Williams, a 22-year-old African-American man, died at a local hospital. Williams was on leave from the army after being stationed in Afghanistan. He went shopping on Sunday, Dec. 20, and was driving home at 11:30 p.m. He got to the 600 block of South Wickham Road in Beechfield--two blocks from his home--when someone came up to him and shot him repeatedly through the car window. He is the second member of the armed services killed in Baltimore City in two days.

Tuesday, Dec. 22

3:25 p.m. A man walking home from church heard three or four gunshots. He ran to the 800 block of Aisquith Avenue, a few blocks from Central Booking, where he saw a man on the ground. Danell Freeman, a 19-year-old African-American man, had been shot in the chest. The passerby, who was a friend of Freeman's, called 911. Freeman died at an area hospital less than an hour later.

6:45 p.m. Harrison Butler, a 44-year-old African-American man, was shot in the head as he entered his home in the 700 block of Linwood Avenue. He collapsed on the dining-room floor. Butler was taken to a nearby hospital in critical condition with little brain activity. He was pronounced brain dead the next day.

Saturday, Dec. 26

5 p.m. Family members were unable to reach Wayne Ruder, a 56-year-old Caucasian man. They went to the shop that Ruder owned, Ruder and Company Jewelry and Antiques Store, in the 6900 block of Reisterstown Road in the Northwestern corner of the city, to see if he was there. The store was closed that day, but Ruder often went in on Saturday to do paperwork. Inside, they found Ruder shot in the chest. He was taken to a local hospital, where he died at 6:02 p.m. According to police, there were no signs of forced entry and nothing appeared to have been taken.

10 p.m. Later that night, police got a call for a group fighting in the 700 block of West Lexington Street near the University of Maryland at Baltimore. Before they arrived, police received another call that there had been a shooting at the scene. Ashley Harper, a 53-year-old African-American man, had been shot in the chest and was dead by the time help arrived at 10:30 p.m. Harper's son and two friends left their house and were accosted by a group of males. The son yelled, "Someone go get Daddy." When Harper came outside, he was shot.

11:53 p.m. Just before midnight, Kinlaw Jones, a 21-year-old man whose race has been listed by police as "other," was shot in the head and body in the 1800 block of East Pratt Street in Upper Fells Point. Jones died at an area hospital at 12:28 a.m.


The man shot to death in the 2400 block of Shirley Avenue on Dec. 12 has been identified as Jamal Keates, a 27-year-old African-American man. Antoine Ennis, a 37-year-old African-American man, was the person fatally shot in the 1100 block of Whitelock Street in Reservoir Hill on Nov. 30.

According to police, the murder of Tavon Waters, a 25-year-old African-American man, is closed by exception. Waters was shot on Oct. 18, 2006, and died in April of this year. Antoine Walker, a then-20-year-old African-American man, was arrested two days after the shooting and charged with attempted murder. All charges against Walker were dropped on May 10, 2007. Walker will not be further prosecuted for this incident.

An arrest has been made in a double homicide. Gary Martin, an 18-year-old African-American man, and Darvin Jones, a 19-year-old African-American man, were shot to death on July 26 in the 200 block of North Conkling Street. They were on their way to a party. Jermaine Johnson, a 28-year-old African-American man, was arrested on Sept. 14 for the murders.

The Sept. 18 murder of Eugene Chambers, a 20-year-old Caucasian man, has been closed by exception. Chambers was shot and killed inside a residence in the 1600 block of Cypress Street in Curtis Bay. Police believe Walter Milewski, a 31-year-old Caucasian man, was responsible for Chambers' death. Milewski was murdered on Sept. 19 in Baltimore County.

Corey Darnell Parker, a 34-year-old African-American man, was arrested on Nov. 17 for the murder of Joseph Taylor, a 28-year-old African-American man. Taylor was found inside a car in the 1300 block of West Fayette Street on Nov. 3 shot in the head.

Just after midnight on Dec. 10, the Warrant Apprehension Task Force located Chauncey Jones, a 17-year-old African-American male, and arrested him for the murder of Alonzo Key, a 26-year-old African-American man. Key was shot to death in the 700 block of North Kenwood Avenue on Oct. 10.

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