Gunman sought in North Ave. shootings Drug-dealing rivalry suspected as teen-ager is slain, 3 others wounded

April 13, 1997|By Jamie Stiehm | Jamie Stiehm,SUN STAFF

Baltimore homicide detectives are searching for a gunman in his late teens or early 20s suspected in the slaying of one teen-ager and the wounding of three others at a North Avenue convenience store Friday night.

The shootings might have stemmed from a dispute among rival neighborhood drug dealers, according to police and residents.

Andre Burrell, 16, of the 4100 block of Hyden Court was pronounced dead at Maryland Shock Trauma Center shortly after the shootings at 9: 03 p.m. in LG's Convenience Store, a candy, cigar and video game shop in the 1700 block of W. North Ave., near Fulton Street.

The assailant burst into the crowded store and "started blasting" bullets, said city police Detective David Brown. Twelve to 14 shell casings were found by police at the store in West Baltimore.

The injured teen-agers were identified by police as Travis Stanfield, 17, and Deandta Taylor, 15, both of the 1600 block of Booker Court, and Russell Green, 18, of 1600 block of N. Gilmor St. All were being treated at Shock Trauma and were listed yesterday in serious, critical and fair condition, respectively.

The shop, owned by Louis George, 36, opened two months ago, neighbors said, and stays open until as late as 3 a.m. Police said that there has been an increase in marijuana sales and other drug activity in the area in recent months.

zTC Green, who was shot in the arm and leg, ran two blocks down an alley, leaving a trail of blood before finding a telephone to call 911.

Whether the shootings were in retaliation for a fatal shooting Thursday night outside 1904 W. North Ave. is a matter of "speculation," Brown said.

In that slaying, Cedric Chase, 16, died of gunshot wounds to his head and chest, Western District police said.

It could be "sending someone a message," said Brown, who indicated that drugs may be involved. Neighbors and police said the store, which was closed yesterday, is in an area where several rival neighborhood groups are believed to sell drugs.

Defined by street boundaries, one group is known as the North and Fulton "boys" and another is known as the "CBS boys" for Calhoun, Baker and Stricker streets. A third group comes from around the intersection of Mount Street and Westwood Avenue.

Several residents washing clothes at the Super Suds laundry next to the store were angry about the store's late hours, which they blamed in part for the shooting. Detectives said the store owner did not appear to be involved.

Pub Date: 4/13/97

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