A 17-year-old boy linked by police to a group of New York drug dealers working in Annapolis was charged with first-degree murder yesterday in the execution-style slaying two weeks ago of a high school senior from Arnold.
Jamel Hayes of the 200 block of Clifton Place in Brooklyn, N.Y., was charged as an adult after turning himself in to Anne Arundel County police.
Darryll Downs, 18, of the 300 block of Ternwing Drive was killed Dec. 20. Police found the Broadneck High School senior's body sprawled on the front lawn of a home in the 1800 block of Copeland Street at Bywater Mutual Homes, a cooperative housing project off Forest Drive in Annapolis.
Officer Dermott Hickey, a spokesman for the Annapolis police, said Mr. Downs was attacked by two assailants. The first man held Mr.Downs, while the second assailant shot him in the back of the head with a small-caliber handgun, police said. Police have not found the weapon.
Police said yesterday the arrest of a second suspect, also from New York, was imminent.
Police alleged that Mr. Downs' assailants were part of a group of New York drug dealers and said the group might have been the first source of crack cocaine in Annapolis, in 1988.
"It is obvious [New York drug dealers] are here," Officer Hickey said. "I
don't think we really know how many there are or how solidly they are entrenched. There seems to be some kind of attraction to our area.
"I think they tend to be more violent than our local drug types," Officer Hickey said. "They don't hesitate to use violence."
Mr. Downs was enrolled in Broadneck's special program for troubled students. The school's football coach was helping him complete enough courses to graduate.
Police said yesterday that Mr. Downs' two assailants were looking
for him to collect money owed for cocaine.
"They were trying to collect it," Officer Hickey said. "One thing led to another. Downs didn't have the money to pay. He tried to flee. They caught him, and the rest is history."
Officer Hickey said police were investigating whether the Downs slaying and the fatal shooting of a New York man in Arnold the day before were linked.
In the Arnold slaying, state police charged William Isaiah Johnson Jr., 26, of Glen Burnie with first-degree murder Thursday afternoon.
Mr. Johnson is accused of killing Jerry Tyrone "Petey" Cadogan, 19, of New York and Barbados, whose body was found in woods off Shot Town Road the same day Mr. Downs was killed.