Police kill teen after chase at Woodlawn High Apparent theft from car sparks officers' response

September 24, 1991|By John Rivera

A 19-year-old Baltimore County man was shot and killed by police on the grounds of Woodlawn High School yesterday as he allegedly tried to run over a police officer responding to an attempted auto theft.

Sadiq A. Martin of the 2900 block of Silver Hill Court died shortly after being taken to the emergency room at St. Agnes Hospital, said Baltimore County police spokesman E. Jay Miller. His mother said he had never been in trouble before.

Two other people in the truck with Mr. Martin, Theron C. Hill, 20, and a 17-year-old whose name was not released, were in police custody last night.

Both were charged with one count each of grand theft auto accessory, conspiracy, destruction of property, being rogue and vagabond and attempted petty theft. Mr. Hill was charged as an adult; the 17-year-old as a juvenile.

The incident began shortly after 10 a.m. yesterday when officers saw a Dodge Raider four-wheel-drive truck stopped in the parking lot behind Woodlawn High School, located at 1801 Woodlawn Ave.

As the officers patrolled the area, which has one of the highest car theft rates in the county, they saw someone run from the truck to a yellow Ford Mustang parked in the lot. The officers then put out a call on a possible auto theft and radioed for help.

Soon, two non-uniform Youth Division officers arrived in an unmarked car and entered the parking lot.

The youths in the Raider saw the officers and started to drive out of the lot, police said. The truck then headed across the athletic field, into a grove on school property, and began circling a tree. By this time, other officers arrived and, with guns drawn, ordered the youths to stop.

After the sixth time around the tree, the youths pulled out an drove toward Officer Timothy T. Mitchem, 29, police said. The four-year veteran of the department fired at least two shots through the truck's windshield. The police are investigating the possibility that another officer also fired at the truck, Mr. Miller said.

After the shooting, police learned that a stereo had been taken from the Mustang parked in the school's lot, Mr. Miller said.

Last night, Mr. Martin's mother, Yvonne Martin, a clerk at the Main Post Office in Baltimore, was puzzled over the circumstances of her son's death and waited to hear more about what happened. "The police haven't told me anything," she said. "I only know what police said on the news."

Mrs. Martin said her son, a graduate of Northwestern High School, had been working as a mail handler at the Main Post Office for the past four months. Yesterday morning, he got home from a night shift at 6:30 a.m. and left soon afterward with some friends, including Mr. Hill.

Mrs. Martin described Mr. Hill as a good friend of her son's and said that he lives nearby.

She said that she heard about the shooting when one of her son's friends recognized the Raider on television and called her. The truck belongs to her, Mrs. Martin said.

Sadiq's father, Hubert Martin, a correctional officer at the Jessup Pre-Release Unit, went to the high school.

Police officers then took him to the hospital, where he identified his son. Del Weimer, Woodlawn's principal, said that the shooting did not disrupt activities there.

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