Man, 18, held in slaying of store clerk

November 25, 1991|By Frank D. Roylance and William B. Talbott | Frank D. Roylance and William B. Talbott,Evening Sun Staff

Baltimore police today arrested an 18-year-old Pimlico man and charged him with the shotgun death last Friday of a neighborhood auto parts store employee.

Larry J. Hill, of the 3400 block of Woodland Ave., was arrested without incident at 4 a.m. at his home, six blocks from the slaying scene.

He was charged with first-degree murder and the attempted robbery of the Mainline Auto Parts store in the 5300 block of Reisterstown Road.

Police said two men, each armed with a shotgun, entered the store about 3:20 p.m. Friday and ordered employees and customers to lie on the floor.

When one robber moved behind the counter, store employee Robert Lee Coles, 63, of the 2200 block of Riggs Ave., reached for a concealed handgun, police said.

One of the robbers saw Coles move and fired a shotgun blast at his chest. The robbers fled without taking anything. Coles was rushed to Sinai Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 3:56 p.m.

Coles' death marred what community groups had promoted as Zero Murder Day in Baltimore, a day they hoped might begin to reduce the violence and murder in the city.

Coles was the 265th person to die by violence in Baltimore this year, two fewer than by the same date last year.

Homicide detectives today continued to search for the second man involved in the killing. It was unclear which man police believe fired the shot that killed Coles. No gun was recovered during Hill's arrest today.

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