Harford man shot, killed by city officer

Incident is second fatal shooting by police in three days

September 13, 1999|By Amy Oakes | Amy Oakes,SUN STAFF

In the second shooting involving Baltimore police officers in three days, a city patrolman in plain clothes killed a 24-year-old Harford County man in East Baltimore yesterday after the man confronted the officer with a handgun, a police spokeswoman said.

Officer Timothy McTaggart, 30, a three-year veteran assigned to the Eastern District, shot Clinton Erwin Dias at least once in the upper body at 12: 30 a.m. in the 2200 block of E. North Ave., said Agent Ragina L. Cooper.

Dias of the 1900 block of Eloise Lane in Edgewood was declared dead at Johns Hopkins Hospital. McTaggart has been placed on administrative duty pending the outcome of an investigation into the shooting.

Confrontation

Police said McTaggart and his partner, Officer Douglas Wine, were driving west on North Avenue in an unmarked police car when they saw Dias shooting at Michael Nichols, 20, of the 1600 block of N. Bentalou St. McTaggart and Wine identified themselves as police officers and told Dias to drop his weapon.

"[Dias] was in the process of firing upon the victim when police came upon him," Cooper said. "He turned toward the officers with [his] gun drawn."

McTaggart fired and struck Dias, who ran a short distance before collapsing at North Avenue and Chester Street. Cooper said she did not know how many shots were fired. Nichols was not injured.

Cooper said the incident began at Cocky Lou's Bar and Lounge in the 2100 block of E. North Ave. A fight broke out, she said, after Dias and Nichols bumped into each other.

A Cocky Lou's employee, who declined to be identified, said the argument started at a bar on the second floor and carried onto a dance floor before three security guards threw the men out.

Earlier shooting

On Friday, a Baltimore police officer shot and killed Mardio House, 26, whose last known address was the 800 block of Peach Orchard Lane in Dundalk. Detective Christopher Graul and an unidentified federal Drug Enforcement Administration officer were trying to serve House with a warrant for failure to appear for a hearing.

The attempt led to a short chase before House was shot once in the stomach at North Montford Street and Llewelyn Avenue. He was declared dead at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Marletta House, Mardio's widow, maintains that police mistook her husband's cellular telephone for a gun.

Pub Date: 9/13/99

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