Teen charged in slaying of bystander at bus stop Woman, 39, fatally shot during youths' fight

October 19, 1995|By Peter Hermann and John Rivera | Peter Hermann and John Rivera,SUN STAFF

A 16-year-old Northwest Baltimore youth was arrested last night and charged with first-degree murder in Tuesday's fatal shooting of a woman while she was holding her granddaughter at a bus stop.

City police said Warren Court of the 3800 block of Cottage Ave. is believed to be the person who shot and killed Cynthia Jones, 39, of the 1900 block of E. Fairmount Ave., East Baltimore.

The Court youth, accompanied by his family, turned himself in at the Northwestern District police station about 7 o'clock last night after being charged as an adult in a warrant earlier in the day. He was being interviewed by homicide detectives last night.

Ms. Jones was standing with her 3-year-old granddaughter and 12-year-old niece at a bus stop in the 5200 block of Park Heights Ave. when she was shot in the neck about 3:15 p.m. Tuesday by someone aboard an MTA bus. Neither the granddaughter, Jerrica Harris, nor the niece, Kristen Jones, was injured.

Police also issued an arrest warrant charging Craig Austin, 16, of the 4200 block of Reisterstown Road as an adult with being an accessory after the fact for allegedly hiding the weapon.

A third person, Chanel Daye, 26, of the 1700 block of Eutaw Place, also was charged with being an accessory after he was interviewed by homicide detectives. He was being held last night at the Northwestern District station awaiting a bail hearing.

Ms. Jones was mourned yesterday by her family as Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke denounced her slaying.

"She was a peaceful, loving person," said the victim's 18-year-old daughter, Tanya Jones. "And she loved everyone."

Mr. Schmoke called the shooting "one of the most disgusting acts I can recall in a long time."

Investigators said the fatal shooting came during an argument between a youth on the bus and another teen-ager on the sidewalk. Cynthia Jones was about to board the bus but backed away when she saw the commotion.

As the bus's rear door closed, the gunman fired a shot through its window, hitting Ms. Jones.

Sometime between when the shot was fired and the bus stopped three blocks away, the gunman and a companion, who police identified as the Austin youth, were able to slip off the bus.

The bus, which had about 50 passengers on board, was escorted to the Northwestern District station, where the passengers were interviewed and police obtained the information that led to the arrest warrants.

"It's horrible, isn't it?" said Tanya Jones, adding that funeral plans for her mother are not yet complete and that her child is disturbed by the trauma. "All she keeps saying is, 'Grandma is hurt.' She doesn't know about the funeral."

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