Friday, January 18, 2008

Freakonomics does The Wire, episode 2

Sudhir Venkatesh watched the second episode of The Wire with his thug pals, and published their thoughts on the Freakonomics blog.

January 18

One of last night's murders happened on the same block where the city is razing abandoned houses; the other happened just a few blocks east of where Patterson High senior and aspiring future police officer Christopher Clarke was killed in crossfire last year.

If the stats are accurate, though, we've had eight murders compared to 17 at this time last year. Bealefeld, if you ever want a beer, I'm buying.

A man was shot Wednesday night in the 2300 block of Wheatley Dr. in the Southwestern. Also in the Blotter: a stubborn jackass on E. 25th St., armed robberies in Essex and Towson, and some stolen beer cans.

Brandon Morris: The jury's out.

Sean Nelson Smith: Guilty.

Michael Gagnon: Not Guilty. (Or so he says.)

The Bermudez brothers went postal, and now they're going to prison.

"Dozens of supporters of a Whiteford couple accused of starving their adopted son to death crammed into a room in Harford County Circuit Court yesterday for the first day of the couple's trial." Uh... why in the world do they have dozens of supporters?

A psych patient who was recently arrested on assault charges decided to leave the crazy house.

Two Murders

Report of two murders last night: one man found shot in an alley at about 7 p.m. in the 3500 block of Cliftmont Ave., and an unidentified person in the 2700 block of Tivoly Ave. at about 11 p.m.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

January 17

There are several substantial stories on Mr. Hallback today, but nobody can agree on how to spell the guy's first name: The Sun writes Zachariah, The Examiner, WYPR and WBAL TV have Zecariah, WJZ follows the City Paper and brings Zechariah to the table, and ABC2 News has more important things to cover than murdered teenagers who were working on education reform.
A viewing for Hallenback will be held on Friday from 3-7 p.m. at the Chavis Funeral Home, 2007 Eastern Ave. The funeral is scheduled for 9:30 a.m., Saturday at Israel Baptist Church, Preston and Washington.

The guy with the post about Mr. Hallback and the "Stop Snitching" photo that inspired some discussion in yesterday's comments promises that he'll explain his rationale for using that image on his site.

Soman Narayanan Thamby is now facing first-degree murder charges for fatally stabbing his wife, Lesa Lynn Thamby, last year.

The Bowling Brook counselors might get off on their reckless endangerment charges.

Jurors are deliberating about Sean Nelson Smith's innocence. Or lack thereof.

A nurse called 911 to say she saw Brandon Morris shoot prison guard Jeffery Wroten, but the jury won't hear it because the nurse might not have actually seen the shooting.

Dr. Sharfstein wants to reduce illegal bupe on the streets. Yeah, because the city has been so successful in reducing other illegal drugs here.

Stupid a-hole.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

From the Algebra Project

We mourn the loss of Zachariah Hallback, a wonderful young man who had participated in many Algebra Project events, and who was helping to organize for the action below. Zach was shot Wednesday, Jan. 9 during a robbery while he waited with other Algebra Project youth for a bus across the street from City College High School. He was pronounced dead on Friday, Jan. 11. The students have decided to continue with this action in his memory.

- Please join them, Silent March to the State House begins at 1:00 p.m., Wednesday, Feb 6, from Asbury United Methodist Church, 87 West Street, Annapolis.
- Reverse cuts to Thornton Funding -- school system must currently cut $50 million to balance 2009 budget
- Jobs in the knowledge-based economy for all youth
- $800 million for Baltimore schools as ordered by court
- Arts for all students; Buildings repaired, not closed; Class sizes capped at 20.
- Quality Education as a Constitutional Right.
- Some students will perform a die-in to dramatize the cost of inadequate education, and the Governor's Mansion will be wrapped in crime-scene tape.

For more information, Call 410-338-0679


UPDATE: The Sun covers a vigil at the scene of the killing.

40 Years for Killer of Andrew Levi Jackson

At a hearing yesterday, Earl Bazemore, 20, of the 2500 block of E. Fayette Street pled guilty to first degree murder and use of a handgun in the commission of a crime of violence. Judge Robert Kershaw sentenced Bazemore to life in prison suspending all but 40 years and five years probation.

Co-defendant Victor Miller, 21, of the 2000 block of W. Eutaw Street pled guilty January 7, 2008 to conspiracy to commit murder and use of a handgun in a crime of violence for his role as lookout. Judge Kershaw sentenced Miller to 50 years in prison suspending all but 25 years and five years probation.

In the early morning hours of September 25, 2006 Police found the body of Andrew Levi Jackson, 26, in the area of the 3200 block of Mt. Royal Terrace. Mr. Jackson had been shot execution style three times in the back of the head. Three .38 caliber bullets were recovered during the autopsy of Mr. Jackson.

On September 27, 2006, Earl Bazemore and Victor Miller were in a gold-colored Honda Accord that was stopped by police in the 6300 block of Hudson Street. A handgun was recovered from the vehicle. The ballistics examination performed revealed the gun recovered from the vehicle was the same gun used to shoot and kill Andrew Levi Jackson.

Homicide Detectives learned from the two other occupants of the car that
Earl Bazemore, whose nickname was “Killer B” and Victor Miller, also known as “.40 Cal” had bragged about killing Mr. Jackson. The witnesses told police how Bazemore and Miller lured the victim into the secluded area near Mt. Royal Terrace and Whitelock Street and then with Miller acting as a lookout, Bazemore shot the victim once in the back of the head and then two more times after Mr. Jackson had fallen to the floor.

The witnesses further explained that Mr. Jackson, who was a lieutenant in the L-Set of the Bloods, was killed because he was “false flagging” – misrepresenting his status inside the gang, and that Bazemore and Miller, who were members of the East Side Bounty Hunters set of the gang, were given the task of killing Mr. Jackson as punishment for this violation of the Bloods Code.

Assistant State’s Attorney E. Wesley Adams prosecuted the case.

January 16

Another shooting in Edgewood.

WJZ has an interview with Diamonte Fairley, the boy scalded and scarred for life by Shamia Lawson. His grandfather reports that he may have to have toes amputated and "may not be able to procreate without an operation."

"The stupidity of it is astounding." Lamont Thomas Harrell, 23, pleaded guilty to the 2007 murders of Allen Coates and Andre S. Jones and got 50 years for both murders and related gun charges.

Murders of Jarrell Brown, Zechariah Hallback and Willie Joyner in the "Ink," the 2004 cases of Jennifer Fischbach and Leslie Berger were closed, as was the 2007 murder of Byron Dickey.

Probation violation charges will be dropped against accused rapist Charles Carroll.

Burglary and vandalism at Bryn Mawr and Boys' Latin.

The CP has part II of the story of Fred Brooks, the drug dealer who ruined Remington.

"Violence Haunts Cherry Hill Block"

Lots of free time at work today? Check out NYT Mag's Steven Pinker pondering if morality is innate, and the various bloggy ponderings of the issue.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

January 15

"The 9-year-old boy went outside without his godmother's permission. His punishment was to sit in a bathtub as the woman filled it with five pots of boiling water. When he emerged from the scalding water, the lower half of his body was covered in severe burns. The woman waited four days to take him to a hospital."
Judge Glynn gave her six months... and the Department of Social Services allowed her to keep her biological child.

A boy who was 14-ish was sot to death in the 800 block of Bethune Rd. in Cherry Hill last night at about 6:30. (Isn't it amazing that two of our first six murders happened on the same street? I took a ride down Bethune Rd. last week, and I've never seen so many people in one neighborhood wearing so many red clothes. They must all have the same tailor or something.)

The article above confirms that 18-year-old Zecariah Hallback died on Saturday after being shot at a safe and reliable bus stop at the corner of 33rd and The Alameda on Thursday night. I assume that Hallback was waiting for the infuriatingly inconsistent MTA #22, which would have dropped him off a few blocks from his home in the 3200 block of Noble St.

And the same article also IDs 18-year-old Willie Joyner as the guy who was fatally stabbed by an old man in a store in the 400 block of E. 25th St. on Saturday afternoon.

Someone got shot in the crotch on Eutaw, and a cop got bopped on the noggin on Pennsylvania Ave.

Threats against the HarCo Circuit Courthouse were made on Friday, so there's more security in Bel Air during Sean Nelson Smith's trial.

Stupid bitch.

PDJ: Registered sex offender Leon Frederick Richards was charged with stalking an 11-year-old girl in Bel Air.

Beware of teenagers in puffy coats.

Three Lanham teenagers are being held without bond for last week's PG drive-by that killed one teenage girl and injured another teenage girl and a 36-year-old man. Apparently, the girl who died wasn't the intended target.

We must've just gotten some fancy new DNA equipment or something, because two guys were just arrested in two unrelated cases involving two dead hookers from three years ago. If my math is right, we'd have one more living hooker in this town if one of the guys hadn't gotten a suspended sentence on an old assault charge.

Patrick Byers (the accused murderer who allegedly paid someone $1,000 to kill witness Carl Lackl) goes to trial today for the death of Larry Haynes, and Bernardo Leconte and Cordero Taylor are being charged as adults for stabbing a 17-year-old at the Mall in Columbia.

It's a rough time to be an allegedly incompetent social services worker in either Baltimore or DC.

The trial continues for Brandon T. Morris, who is charged with killing prison guard Jeffery Wroten.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Mom Pleads in Death of Two-Year-Old

At a hearing today Destiny D’Urso, 26, of Damascus, MD, pleaded guilty to manslaughter. Under terms of the plea agreement, announced in open court before Judge Timothy J. Doory, D’Urso agreed to testify truthfully and honestly against Paul Highfield. There was no sentence agreement, but the maximum prison sentence for manslaughter is 10 years. No sentencing date was scheduled.

On September 12, 2006 Anthony Joseph D’Urso, 2, lived at 1213 E. Patapsco Ave. Destiny D’Urso, the victim’s mother, left for work leaving her son in the care of Paul Highfield. The child was healthy when she left. When she returned, the child was vomiting uncontrollably, and D’Urso noticed numerous knuckle-sized bruises on the child’s abdomen. The child continued vomiting, and was put to bed by D’Urso. The child died during the night. D’Urso never sought medical attention for the child. The Medical Examiner determined that the child died of blunt force trauma.

The murder and child abuse trial of Paul Highfield, 28, of the 4000 block of Security Lane was scheduled for March 17, 2008. D’Urso remains held on $350,000 bail. Highfield is held without bail. Assistant State’s Attorneys Julie Drake, Chief of the Felony Family Violence Division and Patricia McLane will prosecute this case.

Meanwhile, Sam Chambers, the director of the Department of Social Services, has stepped down.

January 14

We listed Zachariah Hallback over on the right side of the site, but the Sun says he's still in critical condition. For Mr. Hallback's sake, I hope the Sun got it right this time. Meanwhile, police can find neither killer nor kin for the man who was stabbed at E. 25th St. and Greenmount Ave. on Saturday.

Also in the Blotter (above link): a home invasion, an unlucky delivery guy in Essex, an arsonist who hates Ford vans in Towson, cigarette thieves in Pikesville, and morons continue to leave their shit in their cars in the Southeastern.

Robert Turner just figured out that the rules are a bit different in HoCo.

Convenience store owners might want to think twice before hiring Tiffany Harris.

Six people were arrested for robbing a bank by impersonating guards from an armored car service.

Whew. Thank goodness we don't have any crime victims, or else we'd have to care about these federal funding cuts.

The teens are triflin', yo.