City police step up patrols in Southwest after shootings

Violence may be connected to prior incidents

November 23, 2010|By Justin Fenton, The Baltimore Sun

A series of shootings and killings in the Southwestern police district over the past few days — pushing the number of city homicide victims to 200 for the year — has police deploying extra officers and the commissioner pushing for greater sharing of intelligence among investigators.

Between Friday and Tuesday morning, three people were killed in the area just east and south of Leakin Park, as well as another three who were injured in nonfatal shootings. Anthony Guglielmi, the department's chief spokesman, said at least some of the shootings appear to be connected.

"We have to move as fast as these guys do," Guglielmi said, adding that police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III wants enhanced and speedier sharing of intelligence about these crimes within the department.

Commanders huddled Tuesday morning, with Bealefeld directing officers from the special operations section and plainclothes violent crimes impact section to beef up patrols.

But the violence in the district continued, with a man shot multiple times in the chest in the 1500 block of N. Ellamont St. about 1:40 p.m. Tuesday. He was taken to Maryland Shock Trauma Center, where he was listed in critical condition.

Meanwhile, a 19-year-old man was fatally stabbed about 10:45 a.m. Tuesday in the Belair-Edison neighborhood of Northeast Baltimore in what police believe was a robbery gone bad. The victim, who has not been identified, was taken to Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

The incidents come as the department is trying to prevent another year-end surge in violence. In each of the past two years, November and December have been the city's two deadliest months.

Seventeen people have been killed in November, compared with 26 in 2009. Some of those victims had been injured in previous years and were added to this year's tally of homicide victims after succumbing to medical complications.

In the Southwest District, which includes neighborhoods south and west of Leakin Park and a sliver of West Baltimore to the east of the park, police would not discuss what possible links were being explored that might connect the shootings to earlier violence:

On Friday, three people were shot in the 1500 block of Poplar Grove St. at about 10:30 p.m. Jerry T. Thomas, 29, was killed; the two others were expected to survive.

Carlton Sellman, 19, was fatally shot about 5 p.m. Saturday in the 600 block of Swann Ave., followed by a nonfatal shooting at 9:16 p.m. Sunday in the 300 block of Collins Ave. that injured a 28-year-old.

Next, there was a midday shooting Monday in the 400 block of N. Loudon Ave. that claimed the life of Charles Burrell, 24.

Thomas and Burrell have a number of arrests for drug offenses; Sellman had a single adult drug charge that was dropped. None appeared to have any recent arrests for violent crimes.

Anyone with information is urged to call homicide detectives at 410-396-2100.

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