About 30 pickets remembered Sadiq A. "Deek" Martin yesterday, chanting "Arrest us; don't kill us" and "Life is more than property," during a two-hour protest at Baltimore County police headquarters in Towson.
Mr. Martin, 19, of the 2900 block of Silver Hill Avenue, was fatally shot Sept. 23 on the parking lot of Woodlawn High School. Police said he was driving his mother's four-wheel-drive Dodge Raider toward Officer Timothy Mitchem, 29, who was standing on the lot. Officer Mitchem fired in self-defense through the windshield, police said.
Kenneth Allen, co-chair of the Sadiq Martin Action Committee for Justice, said the group is glad the shooting is being investigated by the FBI as well as the county state's attorney's office.
But the protest was needed because "too much force was used," said Mr. Allen, a Catonsville insurance agent and a former neighbor of the Martins. Mr. Martin had no criminal record, Mr. Allen noted, "and it's my understanding all that was involved was [the alleged theft of] a car radio. I've seen them stop armed criminals without deadly force, so why shoot at three kids in a vehicle?"
"The young man was a friend of my children -- and I'm concerned for my children."
Among the protesters was Theron C. Hill, 20, of the 5500 block of Gwynn Oak Avenue, who was a passenger in Mr. Martin's truck and is charged with theft along with a juvenile passenger.
"What happened is they shot Deek for no damn reason," he said.
In response to the protesters' charges, police spokesman E. Jay Miller said, "We have repeatedly asked that anyone with any information contact us or the state's attorney, but so far we have not been contacted by anyone" with a different account of the shooting.