Man shot dead in West Baltimore

January was one of least deadly months on record

February 02, 2010|By Justin Fenton | justin.fenton@baltsun.com

A 27-year-old man was shot to death Monday morning in West Baltimore, hours after the city concluded one of its least deadly months in recent history.

Officers found John England, of the 4600 block of E. Monument St., in the 2200 block of N. Monroe St. about 8:10 a.m., lying between a jersey barrier and the curb. He was suffering from multiple gunshot wounds to the torso and was taken to Maryland Shock Trauma Center, where he was pronounced dead before 9 a.m.

Agent Donny Moses, a police spokesman, said detectives did not have any suspects or know of a motive. England was sentenced to five years in federal prison in 2006 for firearm possession followed by three years of supervised release, according to records.

There were 12 people killed in January, the second-lowest total for the month of January in any year since 1970 and lowest since 1977, according to data compiled by The Baltimore Sun. Overall, there have been 12 or fewer homicides in any given month only four times since 1988.

Some say the reduction could be because of cold weather. But January has generally been a deadly month in Baltimore, averaging the fourth-most killings of any month behind May, June and July from 1999 to 2008. There were 21 killings through January last year, and the city went on to essentially match its homicide total from the previous year as other cities saw significant declines.

The Police Department's most available statistics show that gun crime continues to decline. As of Jan. 23, street robberies involving guns were down 31 percent compared with the same period last year, falling from 86 to 59.

Total gun crime was down 34 percent, according to the statistics.

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