Arbutus man kills sister, then fatally shoots self Two others slain in Baltimore County's first homicides of year

January 04, 1996|By Richard Irwin | Richard Irwin,SUN STAFF Sun staff writers Jay Apperson and Lisa Respers contributed to this article.

An elderly Arbutus man apparently shot his sister to death then killed himself last night, Baltimore County police reported.

It was the third homicide reported in the county yesterday and among the first slayings of the year. The others were a woman who was found fatally shot in Woodlawn and a man who was bludgeoned to death in his Middle River apartment, police said.

In the latest incident, police said a man called 911 at 6:08 p.m. and said he had been shot and that the rear door of the bungalow was open. The line then went dead, police said.

About three minutes later, police arrived at a bungalow in the 4900 block of Leeds Ave., entered a first-floor bedroom and found a man on the floor, dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. A handgun was found near his body, police said.

Also in the bedroom, police found a woman on the bed, bleeding from a bullet wound to the head. She died at 7:22 p.m. at St. Agnes Hospital, police said.

Police identified the victims as Thomas Lawrence Grentz, 87, and his sister, Eleanor N. Simpson, 85, who lived together in the house.

The bodies were found in the woman's bedroom.

Lt. Stephen Doarnberger, a police spokesman, said the brother apparently left the rear door open to allow entry to police. He said prescription medicine in both names indicated the two had been ailing and that the woman recently fell and broke a hip.

He said an oxygen dispenser was in the woman's bedroom with several get-well cards sent to the woman by friends and relatives.

The county's first homicide of 1996 was reported about 7:30 a.m. by a man who found a woman's body while walking his dog in the 3100 block of Windsor Blvd., near the Town and Country Apartments, said Sgt. Kevin B. Novak, a police spokesman.

Sergeant Novak said the body with a gunshot wound to the head was on a parking lot near a tennis court, and had no identification.

The spokesman said police hoped to use fingerprints to identify the woman, who was black and appeared to be in her 20s.

Investigators knew of no motive and no suspect, he said, adding that there was no sign the woman had been sexually assaulted.

Hours later, police found the body of Deral Brown Williams, 60, in the hallway of his apartment in the first block of Beech Drive, Sergeant Novak said, adding that he apparently died from blunt trauma to the head.

He said police received a call at 12:41 p.m. from a Chesapeake Village apartments maintenance worker who had been sent to check on Mr. Williams.

"From what we understand from neighbors, Mr. Williams was one to check on others, taking them to pick up prescriptions and such, and they just returned the concern," Sergeant Novak said.

There was no sign of forced force entry and no apparent motive, he said.

Officials said there were 34 homicides in the county last year.

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