Two men fatally shot on Mondawmin Avenue

April 19, 2002|By Laurie Willis | Laurie Willis,SUN STAFF

Northwest Baltimore was the scene of the city's 76th and 77th homicides of the year yesterday, when two men were gunned down in the 4000 block of Mondawmin Ave. shortly after midnight.

By comparison, the homicide toll in Baltimore was 69 on April 18 of last year, police said.

When authorities responded to a call about gunshots about 12:45 a.m. yesterday, they found the bodies of Wayne Duke Cavanaugh, 40, and an unidentified man, said Officer Nicole Monroe, a police spokeswoman.

The men had been shot several times and were dead at the scene, Monroe said. Police were investigating the incident last night, she said.

Cavanaugh died a block from the house in which he grew up and still resided in the 4100 block of Mondawmin Ave.

Neighbor Cecil Johnston, 47, has resided on that block since the early 1960s and had known Cavanaugh since he was a baby. Cavanaugh's older brother died in a car accident several years ago, Johnston said.

"I heard the gunshots," Johnston said yesterday. "Everybody is more or less shocked. First of all, this kind of thing doesn't really happen in this neighborhood. I don't remember a lot of murders. Not this close, meaning people I've known."

Bernett C. Cavanaugh, the victim's aunt, said he had never married or had children.

"Wayne was quiet ... and always willing to do things for anybody," she said. "I don't care who it was. He was ready to do them a favor."

Bernett Cavanaugh said her nephew was good at secretarial work and "always had jobs working in an office."

"He was a lovely person. He really was. Very sweet," she said.

The victim's father, Curtis Cavanaugh Sr., visited the spot where his son was gunned down yesterday. "They had already taken his body away," Bernett Cavanaugh said. "He didn't see him."

Sun staff writer Richard Irwin contributed to this article.

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