THEIR STO­RIES IN­SIDE

Pro­files of all July homi­cide vic­tims drawn from in­ter­views with rel­a­tives, friends, neigh­bors and po­lice, as well as in­for­ma­tion on so­cial media.

Baltimore Sun Sunday - - FRONT PAGE -

Josh Re­mus Bur­nett, 15

July 2, 3700 block of W. Rogers Ave., stab­bing

Six weeks af­ter Josh Bur­nett’s death, Robin John­son wore a T-shirt em­bla­zoned with photos of her and her son, and bear­ing the words “Me & my baby.” She vis­its his grave fre­quently, she said, and she of­ten feels his pres­ence around the house when lights, faucets, or mu­sic turn on in­ex­pli­ca­bly. “I be­lieve in spir­its,” she said. John­son said Josh was a hard worker who washed cars, cut grass with a lawn mower his fa­ther bought him and sold wa­ter to make money. He also helped oth­ers in his spare time, she said.

“Any­thing they’d ask him to do, he’d help ’em out,” John­son said.

Nathaniel Wheeler, 31

July 2, 2700 block of Auchen­toroly Ter­race, shoot­ing

Nathaniel Wheeler was shot mul­ti­ple times while work­ing on a con­struc­tion site in West Bal­ti­more the day af­ter his birth­day.

Tavon Wheeler said his brother’s death makes him one of just a few men in his fam­ily who are not in­car­cer­ated or dead.

“I’ve lost a lot to these streets,” he said. “I’ve been shot on these streets; my brother’s been shot on these streets; my fa­ther’s died on the street, hit by a car when he was 28; my brother got hit by a car, died when he was 9; my grand­fa­ther died in the street to over­dose."

Keith Glas­coe, 50

July 3, 3400 block of W. Ca­ton Ave., shoot­ing

Ev­ery­one on South Kos­suth Street in the St. Joseph’s neigh­bor­hood in West Bal­ti­more knew Keith Glas­coe, ac­cord­ing to King­dom First Min­istries Pas­tor Mark Hol­land.

Glas­coe was al­ways there to help his neigh­bors, from mow­ing lawns and main­tain­ing bushes to run­ning er­rands or just check­ing up on peo­ple, said Hol­land, who knew Glas­coe for more than 15 years.

“He was a com­mu­nity guy,” he said.

Ed­ward Bur­roughs, 26

July 5, 2000 block of Kennedy Ave., shoot­ing

Ed­ward Bur­roughs was a de­vout Mus­lim who at­tended a lo­cal mosque regularly.

Aisha Robin­son, Bur­roughs’ sis­ter-in­law who knew him for 14 years, called him “one of the best peo­ple I ever met” and said that he al­ways wore a con­ta­gious smile.

“He had a won­der­ful spirit. Noth­ing could ever keep him down, ever,” Robin­son said, adding that as long as his mother was OK, “he was OK.”

Char­lotte Fran­cis said that with­out her son, she feels like a piece of her­self is miss­ing.

“It seemed like ev­ery­thing got so bright once I got him,” she said. “My light’s all gone.”

Derwin Jones, 21

July 6, first block of N. Gil­mor Ave., shoot­ing

Derwin Jones was shot and killed in the Franklin Square neigh­bor­hood of West Bal­ti­more. His fam­ily de­clined to com­ment for this ar­ti­cle.

John F. Davis, 48

July 6, 800 block of Seag­ull Ave., shoot­ing

De­chonne McNair, 22, said his fa­ther, John F. Davis, was a me­chanic who was known for be­ing able to fix any­thing.

McNair said his fa­ther could “get along with any­body” and was a good, yet strict, par­ent to his chil­dren — two boys, six girls.

McNair tat­tooed a cross onto his arm in honor of his fa­ther.

An­to­nio An­der­son, 25

July 7, 1500 block of Sher­wood Ave., stab­bing

On June 19, just weeks be­fore his death, An­to­nio An­der­son posted on Face­book: “Feel­ing blessed just turned 25 to­day alot of peo­ple dont make to see my age.”

An­der­son’s fam­ily de­clined to com­ment for this ar­ti­cle.

An­der­son had been shot pre­vi­ously in 2010.

On July 5, just two days be­fore his death, he posted on Face­book: “Thank God for another day.”

Eric Re­nard For­rester, 41

July 7, 300 block of N. Hil­ton St., shoot­ing

Eric For­rester, who court records in­di­cate also went by the name Eric Brown, had a string of hand­gun-re­lated crim­i­nal charges. They in­cluded a 2002 mur­der charge for which he was found not guilty.

But his death is not be­lieved re­lated to any of those prior trou­bles: Homi­cide unit com­man­der Capt. Don­ald Bauer said in­ves­ti­ga­tors be­lieve he was killed dur­ing a rob­bery at a dice game on a bas­ket­ball court.

For­rester’s rel­a­tives could not be lo­cated.

Gerald Thompson, 34

July 7, 900 block of W. Fayette St., shoot­ing

Gerald Thompson was killed in the same quadru­ple shoot­ing that took the lives of Jac­que­line Parker and Lamont Ran­dall. A neigh­bor said that Thompson’s fam­ily moved from their home af­ter he was killed. At­tempts to reach the fam­ily were un­suc­cess­ful.

Jac­que­line Parker, 53

July 7, 900 block of W. Fayette St., shoot­ing

Jac­que­line Parker, the only woman among the 45 peo­ple killed in the city in July, was a grand­mother and beloved leader of her fam­ily. Karen Parker said her sis­ter was a wild child grow­ing up in the projects, but was also de­voutly re­li­gious.,adding, “Any­thing that was go­ing on, she would just tell you, ‘Pray on it. Talk to God about it.’”

Jac­que­line Parker, who had sev­eral sib­lings and two chil­dren, was the fam­ily me­di­a­tor, her sis­ter said. “Ev­ery time our fam­ily had a misun­der­stand­ing, Jackie would sit down and talk ev­ery­thing out with you. That’s what I re­ally miss.”

Lamont Ran­dall, 39

July 7, 900 block of W. Fayette St., shoot­ing

Ni­cole Jones-Ran­dall, 37, said her hus­band was a de­voted fam­ily man. They shared seven sons and four grand­chil­dren, whom he fre­quently posted about on Face­book.

His Face­book photos in­clude those of his fam­ily and of his tat­toos, one of which read “Death be­fore dis­honor” across his chest.

Jones-Ran­dall de­scribed her hus­band as out­go­ing and said he was some­one who sup­ported his own.

“He was just a lov­ing, kind, giv­ing per­son. ... Well-re­spected,” she said.

Gary Jack­son, 21

July 8, 1700 block of W. Lan­vale St., shoot­ing

Gary Jack­son’s older sis­ter said he had just gead­u­ated from Au­gusta Fells In­sti­ti­tute of Vis­ual Arts High School and was “lov­ing, car­ing, happy and re­spect­ful." Tionya Jack­son said her brother had a 1-year-old son and was a "ded­i­cated fa­ther." Po­lice are in­ves­ti­gat­ing whether Jack­son’s death was drug-re­lated

Dar­rius John­son, 19

July 10, 5100 block of Park Heights Ave., shoot­ing

Neigh­bors who knew Dar­rius John­son de­scribed him as a Mus­lim who liked play­ing bas­ket­ball and rid­ing dirt bikes. His fam­ily de­clined to com­ment.

Tyrell Hardy, 22

July 10, 1200 block of N. Wood­ing­ton Road, shoot­ing

Po­lice are in­ves­ti­gat­ing whether Tyrell Hardy’s killing was re­tal­i­a­tion for a rob­bery. Court records show he was ar­rested on a rob­bery case and a hand­gun case. A rel­a­tive said the fam­ily de­clined to com­ment for this ar­ti­cle.

Dante Barnes, 39

July 11, 2600 block of Boone St., shoot­ing

Just days be­fore Dante Barnes’ death, he gave a talk to his fi­ancee’s daugh­ter about guns.

“He was telling me some­times when you make some­body up­set and they have a weapon, that’ll be the first thing they get,” said Quisha Wright, 17.

The talk would prove prophetic. Barnes was shot in the head, ac­cord­ing to po­lice.

Barnes, who served 14 years in prison for as­sault and a hand­gun crime, was on the road to a bet­ter path since his re­lease, ac­cord­ing to his fi­ancee, An­drea Young. At the time of his death, she said he was work­ing a jan­i­to­rial job and had just earned an HVAC cer­ti­fi­ca­tion.

“He had a sec­ond chance at life, com­ing home from prison,” she said.

James Ri­cardo Smith, 38

July 11, 4300 block of E. Wabash Ave., shoot­ing

The Bal­ti­more Sun was un­able to lo­cate any of James Ri­cardo Smith’s fam­ily mem­bers for this ar­ti­cle.

Gre­gory Tavon Higgins, 40

July 11, 1800 block of N. Durham St., shoot­ing

Though Gre­gory Tavon Higgins spent much of the past 20 years in prison, he was like a fa­ther to his nephew My­ron Higgins, who said he grew up with­out one. They talked of­ten on the phone, and the nephew vis­ited him in prison.

Gre­gory Tavon Higgins’ re­lease from prison last year al­lowed the two of them to grow closer, pur­su­ing mu­sic and busi­ness ven­tures to­gether. My­ron Higgins raps un­der the name Sun of Bal­ti­more, and his un­cle per­suaded him dur­ing the Fred­die Gray un­rest to film a video for an old song that sud­denly had new mean­ing.

The video shows My­ron rap­ping about black power with the upris­ing as a back­drop. “I’m think I’m Mal­colm X/Martin Luther/Com­rade Ge­orge/ Huey New­ton … Power to the Peo­ple/ We ’bout to set it off,” he raps.

Fred­er­ick Sa­muel Tay­lor, 32

July 12, 2100 block of E. Ea­ger St., shoot­ing

Fred­er­ick Sa­muel Tay­lor was one of two peo­ple shot in a July 12 in­ci­dent; the other vic­tim, who has not been iden­ti­fied, sur­vived. Tay­lor spent much of the past 15 years in prison, af­ter be­ing charged with at­tempted first-de­gree mur­der in 2002 and plead­ing guilty to first-de­gree as­sault. Fam­ily mem­bers could not be lo­cated.

Marvin Cos­ton Jr., 28

July 12, 1800 block of E. Fed­eral St., shoot­ing

Marvin Cos­ton Jr. was shot mul­ti­ple times in the back near where po­lice say he lived. A neigh­bor said the fam­ily moved af­ter Cos­ton was killed, and they could not be reached for com­ment. Po­lice are in­ves­ti­gat­ing whether he was killed in a dis­pute over a hand­gun.

Steven Justin Lewis, 31

July 12, 3400 block of Ch­ester­field Ave., shoot­ing

Tona Bur­rell, Steven Justin Lewis’ fi­ancee and girl­friend of 11 years, keeps Lewis’ ashes on a ta­ble in her liv­ing room. Three weeks af­ter his death, the urn was sur­rounded by sym­pa­thy cards and a burst­ing bou­quet of flow­ers.

Bur­rell de­scribed Lewis as a car­ing per­son and said his gen­eros­ity tran­scended his life through or­gan do­na­tion.

“I do know his heart, pan­creas, liver and kid­neys was do­nated, so even in death he was still want­ing to help some­one,” she said.

Bur­rell said Lewis was a step­fa­ther to her three boys — ages 22, 17, and 16 — and “they loved him.”

LLOYD FOX/BAL­TI­MORE SUN

Robin John­son vis­its the grave of her son, Josh Re­mus Bur­nett, at the Ar­bu­tus Me­mo­rial Park Ceme­tery. Josh, 15, was fa­tally stabbed by a 13-year-old dur­ing a dis­pute. John­son is ac­com­pa­nied by her daugh­ters, Ja’mya Robin­son, 8, and Jas­mine Wells, 22,...

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