Latrobe Homes on edge after shootings
Man fired randomly into crowd; children wounded
Days after two young children were wounded in the crossfire of a shootout at the Latrobe Homes public housing complex, Priscilla Wheeler said her mind was on her 3-year-old granddaughter, Kar-lee.
“Nighttime, we be in the house,” said Wheeler, 55. “We don’t be out here. You just never know when they’re going to start shooting.”
On Wednesday afternoon, 50 police recruits fanned out around Latrobe Homes in East Baltimore, passing out fliers asking for residents to call or text them tips in the Saturday night shooting that wounded a 4-year-old, a 6-year-old and a 61-year-old woman in a wheelchair. Police also released a surveillance video Wednesday of what they say was a dice game player who left, then returned with a gun and began firing into a crowd of people.
Baltimore police spokesman T.J. Smith said the victims were not the intended targets. The male suspect has not been caught, and police urged anyone with information to contact Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7LOCKUP.
The Latrobe Homes shooting was part of a violent Labor Day weekend in which 22 people were shot between Friday afternoon and Monday night. Four of them were killed. Another triple shooting Monday on Monument Street left one man dead and wounded two women, one of whom was pregnant.
In that case, police announced Wednesday they had arrested Toniasha Manique Police officer trainees Junior Elmera and Christopher Scott knock on doors at Latrobe Homes as they pass out fliers in the neighborhood. Johnson, 23, and charged her with firstdegree murder and other charges. Court records were unavailable on Wednesday, and it could not be determined if she had an attorney.
Police said Johnson conspired to commit the crime and handed the gun to Marion “Nephew” Daughton, who previously had been charged with first-degree murder in the case. Police alleged Daughton was the “trigger puller” but said Johnson bore the same responsibility for the crime. Smith said both were members of the Bloods gang.
At Latrobe Homes, residents said they were shaken by the shooting and some said they typically feel relatively safe.
Malcolm Johnson, 41, said the public housing residents are mostly older people and children who are often running around outside, as the two children were when they were injured on Saturday night.
“This is something new,” he said. “It’s wild, though. Two little kids and somebody’s grandmother.” The fliers handed out in the canvass seek information on the shootings Saturday of two children and a woman.
Alston Gunter, another Latrobe Homes resident, said he was “very much concerned” and added that the area felt more violent lately after his three years there.
“I’m praying that they do catch whoever did it,” said Gunter, 53. “Because it could be me, it could be anybody else” who might be shot.
He added: “I’m a person who minds my business. Because if you’re not, retaliation could come from anywhere.”
Smith urged residents to contact police if they know anything about the shooting.
“We were inches away from having another McKenzie Elliott situation here in Baltimore,” said Smith, referring to the 3-year-old girl who was killed by a stray bullet while playing on her front porch in 2014. “If it went the other way, I think we would be more outraged, but it doesn’t take away from the fact that a 4-year-old and a 6-year-old are recovering from bullet wounds. That’s absolutely ridiculous, and we should not tolerate it.”