Two men arrested in Columbia shooting

Police seek third suspect in wounding of teen-agers

May 16, 2002|By Julie Bykowicz | Julie Bykowicz,SUN STAFF

Howard County police arrested two Laurel men yesterday and were searching for a third suspect in connection with a drive-by shooting Tuesday in Columbia that wounded three teen-agers, police said.

Officers apprehended Teon Nicholson, 24, of the 900 block of Fifth St. and his cousin Philip Nicholson, 20, of the 15600 block of Millbrook Lane and issued an arrest warrant for Derek Travell Powell, 20, of the 11600 block of S. Laurel Drive, police said.

None had been formally charged as of yesterday evening.

The men became suspects after one witness to the shooting gave police a description of the suspects' car, including its license plate, police said. The 1987 dark-blue Lincoln Town Car is registered to one of Teon Nicholson's family members, county police spokeswoman Sherry Llewellyn said.

Police think the shooting occurred "after a minor altercation between the suspects and the victims," Llewellyn said. The shooting occurred within hours of an earlier fight, she said, but she could not be more specific about the time frame.

The shooting and altercation happened in the parking lot of an apartment complex in the Wilde Lake village of Columbia.

Police released the three victims' names yesterday afternoon. Ryan Fasset, 18, and Wendell Martinez, 16, suffered gunshot wounds to the legs. Tanelle Mitchell, 15, was grazed in the leg by a bullet.

Fasset and Martinez were taken to Maryland Shock Trauma Center, police said. A hospital spokeswoman said Martinez was in fair condition and Fasset was treated and released yesterday.

Mitchell was taken to Howard County General Hospital, where she was treated and released, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Although the three wounded teen-agers live in Columbia, none resides in the apartment complex on Daystar Court where the shooting occurred, police said.

Llewellyn said police are unsure why the teen-agers were outside the apartment complex at the time of the shooting, but resident Inez Burns said she sees Fasset, whom she described as "a good kid," in the area all the time.

Fasset lives in the nearby village of Hickory Ridge, and Martinez and Mitchell live in the Wilde Lake village.

Burns said Fasset is a senior at Wilde Lake High School, which is near the apartment complex, and is friends with her two 18-year-old sons.

She and other witnesses told police they heard six gunshots followed by shouting. Some eyewitnesses said they saw a large, dark-colored vehicle circle the Daystar Court parking lot and speed off.

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