A fourth suspect in the drug-related killings Dec. 5 of five women in a Belair-Edison rowhouse was arrested last night six blocks east of the scene of the shootings.
The suspect, Robert Nay Bryant, 23, of the 1200 block of Cavendish Way in the O'Donnell Heights section of Southeast Baltimore, was found hiding under a living room couch at 3643 Dudley Ave. about 10: 20 p.m. by Housing Authority Police and uniformed Northeastern District police, and taken to police headquarters.
Bryant, charged in five warrants with first-degree murder, took refuge under the couch as heavily armed police were about to enter the house that was occupied by three other people, said police spokesman Robert W. Weinhold Jr. He said that the fugitive was arrested without incident and that a tip led to the arrest.
Bryant is the fourth and last known suspect to be arrested in the crime, one of Baltimore's worst mass killings. Police had conducted an extensive manhunt for the suspects.
After the killings, Bryant was identified as one of the nation's top fugitives on the nationally aired "America's Most Wanted" television show. Hundreds of local police had been driving with Bryant's picture on the dashboard of their cruisers.
Weinhold said last night that the three residents of the house where Bryant was arrested also were taken to police headquarters and might be charged with harboring a fugitive. Their relationship to Bryant and how long he had been in the house was not immediately known, Weinhold said.
Weinhold said last night that police were seeking a search warrant for the Dudley Avenue house in an effort to find weapons used in the killings and other evidence linked to the Dec. 5 crime. Bryant and two of the other suspects have extensive criminal records. Bryant was convicted of selling drugs and unlawful possession of a rifle in March 1996 and sentenced to 30 months in prison.
Police said they had found four guns and two large bags of drugs at the Westminster shelter where he had been living. Two years earlier, he was charged with shooting a man eight times in the chest and back during a city robbery. However, prosecutors dropped the charges when the victim did not appear in court.
The three other men charged in the Dec. 5 execution-style killings are Tariq A. Malik, 20, of the 1400 block of Kossuth St.; his brother, Ismael Malik Wilson, 27, of the 1200 block of Gusryan St.; and Tavon McCoy, 21, of the 1800 block of E. Biddle St.
Police said each is being held without bail at the Central Booking and Intake Center.
The killings rocked a city already flirting with another murderous year. Baltimore is on a pace to record at least 300 murders in 1999, which would make the 10th straight year that more than 300 were slain.
Cut down in a hail of bullets from large-caliber handguns in a two-story rowhouse in the 3500 block of Elmley Ave. about 6: 30 p.m. and pronounced dead at the scene were Mary McNeil Matthews, 39, who owned the house; Mary Helen Collien, 56; Makisha Jenkins, 18; Trennell Alston, 26; and Lavanna Spearman, 23. Collien was Matthews' mother and Jenkins' grandmother.
Matthews' son, Tavares McNeil, 22, was found shot to death Dec. 7 in the 4900 block of Goodnow Road. Police said they believe his death is related to the other killings.