Annapolis teen held in city's eighth killing

November 03, 2007|By Justin Fenton | Justin Fenton,Sun reporter

A 17-year-old teenager was ordered held without bond yesterday after police said he surrendered and confessed to a fatal shooting Halloween night, The killing prompted a call for action from civic leaders.

Accompanied by his mother and friends, Dupree Rashard Williams went to the Annapolis Police Station Thursday afternoon and confessed to shooting Jerome D. Hughes twice with an automatic handgun outside of a public housing community off West Street about 7 p.m. on Halloween, according to charging documents.

Court documents indicate that witnessed led police to consider Williams a suspect. One witness said the shooter walked up to Hughes, shot him once, then fired three or four more shots while standing over his body, records show.

Police said they found Hughes, 18, lying on his back with a crowd of trick-or-treaters and others gathered around him.

The killing was the city's eighth of the year, breaking last year's record of seven. With Williams' apprehension, police said, they have made arrests in five of this year's slayings. All seven were solved last year.

According to court records, both Hughes and Williams resided in the 300 block of Bloomsbury Square, a public housing community next to St. John's College. It was not clear yesterday whether they might have known each other.

Hughes' death intensified long-standing concerns over safety in Maryland's capital, where Mayor Ellen O. Moyer and Police Chief Joseph Johnson have been fending off criticism.

At a news conference held at the First Baptist Church on Washington Street, a short distance from where Hughes was killed, a group of black community leaders called for the community to take charge and fight back against violence.

They called for increased mentoring programs and interaction between families and churches, creation of more jobs and money to start a drug treatment program, which would be the first in the area.

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