Man, 19, charged with murder in shooting of car owner

January 20, 2002|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

City homicide detectives charged a 19-year-old man yesterday with first-degree murder in the killing last week of a Woodlawn truck driver who was trying to prevent the theft of his car.

Warren Porter was charged by police in the Jan. 15 shooting death of Tifford Fields, 36, of the 7200 block of Stony Barr Road.

Fields was fatally shot about 7:45 p.m. outside a West Baltimore restaurant as he tried to stop the theft of his 1992 Lexus, police said.

Police said that Fields, who was having dinner with his wife at Root's Unlimited Kitchen in the 2100 block of Vine St., went to check on his car after he noticed some people in the restaurant eyeing him in what he thought was a suspicious manner.

Outside, Fields found a man sitting at the wheel of his car. As he struggled with the man, trying to remove him from the vehicle, Porter fatally shot Fields in the upper torso, police said.

Detective John Riddick said the gunman apparently was coming to the aid of his associate, who was attempting to drive off with the Lexus.

Riddick credited residents in the Vine Street area with providing information that helped police apprehend Porter.

"The efforts by citizens helping in this case were enormous, Riddick said.

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