A 25-year-old Harford County man was fatally shot yesterday in an Edgewood neighborhood that has been rattled by a string of violence in recent years, authorities said.
After receiving calls of a shooting about 2:30 p.m., sheriff's deputies found Samuel David Horne, 25, lying in the parking area in front of a row of townhouses in the 1800 block of Brookside Drive.
Horne, who lived in the nearby 1800 block of Grempler Way in the Watergate Village complex, was found with several gunshot wounds to his upper body, said Sgt. Christina Presberry, spokeswoman for the county sheriff's office. He was taken to Upper Chesapeake Medical Center in Bel Air, where he was pronounced dead.
The sheriff's office said it knew of no suspects and no motive in the killing.
Horne's slaying is the second in Harford County this year - and the second in that neighborhood. The first was the killing on New Year's Day of Walter Antonio Overton, 20, in the 400 block of Meadowood Drive. The shootings come on the heels of a nearly 10-year high in homicides for Harford County, with seven people killed in 2006.
The Edgewood community in southwestern Harford has struggled with gang- and drug-related violence that spurred the sheriff's office to step up patrols and increase staffing in its southern precinct. This year, Sheriff L. Jesse Bane has tripled the number of deputies in the precinct, which previously had no more than 10 deputies on duty during peak evening hours.
County Councilman Dion F. Guthrie said Bane has also held community meetings to allow residents to air concerns. A $3 million expansion of a nearby community and recreation center will soon house youth activity programs to take them off the streets and discourage crime, Guthrie said.
"In the last seven, eight months we have come a long way from where we were, but this is a blow for us," Guthrie said. "Sometimes, even as you're trying to make things better, there are fallbacks."
Guthrie said he knew Horne, who he said was the son of a community activist who had recently moved to Florida.
"This will be hard for the community," Guthrie said.
Residents in the 1800 block of Brookside Drive were cautious yesterday about talking to a reporter. A longtime resident who refused to give her name said she has watched her community decline over the years, with more fights in the street, drug arrests and now two killings in the same block in as many years.
She said she joined other residents in a public plea last summer for greater police presence after the July 13, 2006, killing of Kevin Harold Rowlette, also in the 1800 block of Brookside.
Harford County Crime Solvers is offering a reward of up to $1,000 for information; callers can contact the tip line at 1-888-540-TIPS.