An unidentified man was shot and killed in northeast Baltimore early today, and three others were slain in unrelated shootings during the weekend, police said.
Police found the body of a fully dressed man in a stairway leading to the basement of a house in the 1600 block of Cold Spring Lane after they were called to the scene this morning by the resident of the house.
The dead man had a bullet wound in the back of his head and appeared to be about 25 to 30 years old, police siad..
The occupant of the house said he had heard gunshots at about 2 or 3 a.m. coming from the grounds of the Lois T. Murray elementary school, directly behind his house.
The witness reportedly told police he looked out his window and saw a man being dragged across the narrow street behind his house and into his yard, but did not immediately notify authorities.
Officers at the scene said the man would be taken to police headquarters for questioning while they continue to investigate the fatal shooting. Three police dogs and their handlers searched the area this morning, but no weapons or cartridge casings were found.
The slaying today, along with the three apparently unrelated others in the city this weekend, pushed the number of homicides so far this year in Baltimore to 163, compared with 158 at the same time last year, said Dennis Hill, a city police spokesman.
Last year, the city recorded 305 homicides, second only to the 330 in 1972.
At 9:30 p.m. Saturday, police found Charles Allen Bryant, 17, of the Bronx, N.Y., lying face down in the 2100 block of Hollins St. He had been shot several times.
Bryant was rushed to the University of Maryland Medical Center, where he died a short time later, police said.
Police said Bryant was seen arguing with a man earlier but that it was not certain if that was a motive for the slaying.
Less than two hours later, at 11:10 p.m., police said Jay Roy, 22, of the 1600 block of Appleton St., was fatally shot in the 1800 block of Bruce St.
Police said Roy was shot at least four times and had bullet wounds in the head, hand and buttocks.
Police believe the slaying was drug-related because Roy, recently released from a prison near Hagerstown, had numerous handgun and narcotics violations.
About 12:30 a.m. yesterday, police said, Sandy Ervin Scott, of the 3000 block of Schaub Ave., was fatally shot in the lower back as he got out of his car in the 5400 block of Sarril Road. He died at 2:30 a.m. at Francis Scott Key Hospital, police said.
Police said Scott, 30, was seen arguing with two men who tried to rob him. Some of his property appeared to be missing and might have been taken by the men.
Hill sought to explain the city's growing number of slayings. "We know 40 to 45 percent [of homicides] are drug-related in some manner," he said. "In many of these cases, the victim and the assailant know each other. They weren't strangers."
In connection with two slayings that occurred July 28, police on Saturday arrested Donald Eugene "Butt-Butt" Booze Jr., 26, of the 3100 block of Thorndale Ave., after an hour-long standoff with police at a friend's mother's home in the 100 block of Stonecroft Road.
Booze was charged with two counts of first-degree murder and felonious use of a handgun in the July 28 slayings of two Baltimore County men in the Pimlico area.
Alan E. Snead, 24, of the 3400 block of Virginia Ave., was arrested last Tuesday on murder charges in the slayings.
In the July 28 killings, Antonio Henderson, 20, and Isaac Durant, 25, were shot on the street in the 3100 block of Woodland Ave., police said.