Two killed in shooting at after-hours club Baltimore police charge city man, 22, with first-degree murder

January 19, 1998|By Richard Irwin and Dana Hedgpeth | Richard Irwin and Dana Hedgpeth,SUN STAFF

Police charged a 22-year-old man late last night with fatally shooting two men and wounding a third inside a West Baltimore after-hours club early yesterday.

Mark Joseph Hollingsworth, 22, of the 4000 block of Edgewood Road in northwest Baltimore was charged with two counts of first-degree murder, one count of attempted first-degree murder and handgun violations, said Detective Mark Wiedefeld of the homicide unit.

Wiedefeld said Hollingsworth, a disc jockey at the club, was being held at the Central Booking and Intake Center pending a bail hearing tomorrow.

Wiedefeld said Hollingsworth, who suffered a head wound during the fight, was among 22 club patrons interviewed at police headquarters after the shooting and was formally charged about midnight.

According to Wiedefeld, an argument broke out about 3 a.m. between the suspect and a patron at the club in the 900 block of W. Baltimore St. He said the patron, Danny Jones, 20, of the first block of N. Stricker St. was shot in the head and chest with a 9 mm pistol and fell dead near the DJ's stand.

Patrons told police the men were fighting over a woman.

Witnesses told police that after Jones was shot, the suspect ran toward the front door while firing his weapon into a crowd of about 100 people.

Wiedefeld said several bullets struck Charles Hemmingway, 27, of the 1100 block of Stockton St. in the legs, arms and stomach. Hemmingway died about 8: 10 a.m. yesterday at Maryland Shock Trauma Center, Wiedefeld said.

Another patron, Kenneth Tyler, 21, of the 1300 block of W. Pratt St. was shot in the stomach and was in serious condition at Shock Trauma last night.

When the suspect reached the front door of the club, he was confronted by Officer Danny L. Fyffe, who fired two shots, forcing him to retreat into the club, Wiedefeld said.

The suspect took advantage of the confusion to enter a room at the rear, where he changed clothes and hid the weapon, police said.

Fyffe found Jones lying dead near the bar, police said. The officer was not injured.

Amid the panic as scores of people fled the club, police detained 22 patrons and took them to headquarters for interviews, Wiedefeld said.

Among them was Hollingsworth, who gave conflicting information about his activities at the club and was charged, Wiedefeld said.

Police said the shooting occurred in a dilapidated rowhouse occupied by an unidentified male, who lived upstairs and converted the bottom floor into a club that is open from midnight to 6 a.m.

Police found a 9 mm Glock behind the bar and a revolver on a shelf near the back of the club.

Fyffe, a 3 1/2 -year veteran of the police force, will be placed on routine administrative duty, Weinhold said.

A 22-year-old West Baltimore woman, who was in the club during the shooting but refused to give her name, said a fight broke out on the dance floor and shots erupted.

"Everybody was dancing one minute and then shooting and fighting the next," said the woman, who said she hid at the rear of the club during the gunfire.

The club, which opened in October, is a popular hangout for teens and customers in their 20s, neighbors and police said.

Patrons say the club has three or four booths, an area for a disc jockey, a bar area and a small dance floor at the back. Patrons said it costs $5 to enter, and the club occasionally serves alcohol.

"It's a place to go because there is nothing to do around here," said a 19-year-old patron.

Pub Date: 1/19/98

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