`I didn't know it was my son'

Glen Burnie mother was among those arriving at scene of teen's fatal shooting Friday

November 26, 2006|By Nick Shields | Nick Shields,Sun Reporter

Londa Sanders was watching television in the living room of her Glen Burnie townhouse when she was startled by a loud commotion.

She stepped outside and walked a few hundred feet behind her home to a grassy area between two groups of townhouses where a small crowd had gathered. As she neared, she shouted for towels and for someone to call 911.

"I saw somebody laying down there," Sanders said. "I didn't know it was my son."

Taveon Jawon Watson, 18, of the 400 block of Norvelle Court was shot about 7:30 p.m. Friday and was pronounced dead at Baltimore Washington Medical Center, Anne Arundel County police said in a news release issued yesterday morning. Known as "T.J.," Watson was taking night classes at Glen Burnie High School.

FOR THE RECORD - An article in the Maryland section Sunday was unclear about the school at which a social worker would be on call and a counselor would be available to assist students affected by a weekend shooting. The institution is Glen Burnie Evening High School.
The Sun regrets the error.

Friday's shooting is not believed to be a random act, police said, and they are pursuing several leads. Lt. David D. Waltemeyer, a police spokesman, said yesterday evening that he was not aware of any arrests in the case.

An autopsy will be performed by the chief medical examiner in Baltimore.

Watson's death marked the second shooting involving a high school student in Anne Arundel County in a week. On Nov. 18, a former and current student of Annapolis High School, along with a U.S. Secret Service agent, were wounded in a shootout at a nearby mall. All three have been released from the hospital, and the Annapolis High graduate is being held without bond on charges of attempted murder.

Bob Mosier, spokesman for Anne Arundel County schools, said a social worker would be on call and a counselor would be available for students or faculty at Glen Burnie High School who might need assistance.

Yesterday afternoon, friends and family of Watson said he was well-liked. They remembered a teenager who loved to work on cars, as well as play basketball and PlayStation 2. They said they could not understand why he was targeted.

"He was really a great kid," said Sanders, 37, the victim's mother. "No words can explain the way I feel right now. [The shooter] took my baby from me."

Smeared bloodstains remained on the white screen door of Dareka Belt's home yesterday morning. Belt, 19, Watson's cousin, lives several hundred feet from Sanders' home.

She said Watson was her favorite cousin, and that he had moved into her home this summer. Earlier Friday, Belt said, Watson had told her he was headed with friends to a nearby convenience store. She said she was in the kitchen of her home when she heard two gunshots. She said she immediately knew that it wasn't from a BB gun she sometimes hears in the community. Moments later, Belt peered outside and saw Watson's friends.

"When I walked around -- he was dead," she said. "We used to do everything together since we were little."

Watson's mother said she had a message for the other teenagers who live in the area.

"No one's invincible," Sanders said. "I really hope kids who know him and love him take heed and do the right thing."

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call Anne Arundel county police at 410-222-8610 or Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7-LOCKUP.

Those calling Metro Crime Stoppers may remain anonymous and could be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000.

nicholas.shields@baltsun.com

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