Community Questions Why SE Drive-by Suspects Were Free

By Pat Collins and Matthew Stabley
|  Thursday, Apr 1, 2010  |  Updated 11:29 PM EDT
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
4th Suspect Sought in D.C. Mass Shooting

NBCWashington.com

Photos and Videos

Legal System Facing Criticism in DC Mass Shooting

Questions are raised about the circumstances that led to the suspects in a mass shooting in southeast Washington being out on the streets.

"We Have to Take Our Streets Back"

Angered and anguished southeast Washington residents speak on what needs to change in the wake of one of the bloodiest shootings in the city's history.
More Photos and Videos

A woman whose son was killed in a shooting believed to be linked to Tuesday night's fatal mass shooting has said authorities erred in letting a possible suspect in her son's death go. Now, details about the past of the 14-year-old believed to be the getaway driver have people wondering why he was free.

The 14-year-old's criminal career began at age 9 and led to 10 arrests, including on charges robbery and assault of a police officer, according to court documents. Youth Services was ordered to keep him secured six times, and he got away six times.

Four people jumped out of the car the 14-year-old is accused of driving, but only three were apprehended. Investigators believe the fourth person might be another suspect in the death of Jordan Howe, police said.

Howe's death may have led to a retaliation shooting, which may have led to another retaliation, the Southeast drive-by shooting, according to sources.

Everything may have started with the 1 a.m. shooting of Howe, 20, March 22 in the 1300 block of Alabama Avenue in Southeast. Sanquan Carter, 19, was taken into custody and charged with second-degree murder in that case. According to court documents, he believed Howe had stolen jewelry from him. However, it is believed his brother, 20-year-old Orlando Carter, also was suspected in that shooting but was never charged.

Later, Orlando Carter was shot in Southeast, taken to a hospital and released.  Sources said authorities know there was a witness to Orlando Carter's involvement in Howe's death. The U.S. Attorney's Office said that it sympathizes with Howe's family but that prosecutors didn't have enough probable cause to charge Orlando Carter in her son's death.

Furthermore, at the time of Howe's death, Sanquan Carter was facing car theft and gun charges in D.C. Superior Court, according to court documents. He was moved from a halfway house to a high-intensity supervision program. He was supposed to attend orientation the day after Howe's death. He was arrested instead. It's unclear if anyone was watching Sanquan Carter the day Howe was killed.

Tuesday night's shooting happened as mourners gathered after Howe's funeral. Tavon Nelson, 17; William Jones III, 19; Brishel Jones, 16; and Devaughn Boyd, 18; were killed in the shooting. Two other females and three other males were injured.

"It was without question one of the most horrific scenes I've been on in my 20 years with the department," said Police Chief Cathy Lanier.

Howe's mother said she believes the mass shooting wouldn't have happened if Orlando Carter was in custody. He was charged with three counts of first-degree murder while armed and one count of second-degree murder while armed in connection to the drive-by. Simms was charged with three counts of first-degree murder while armed.

Police continue to investigate Tuesday's shootings.  Anyone with information should call police at 202-727-9099 or 1-888-919-CRIM[E] (1-888-919-2746). The Metropolitan Police Department currently offers a reward of up to $25,000 to anyone who provides information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for any homicide committed in the District.
 
Additionally, anonymous information may be submitted to DC CRIME SOLVERS at 1-866-411-TIPS and to the department’s TEXT TIP LINE by text messaging 50411. If the information provided by the caller to the Crime Solvers Unit leads to an arrest and indictment, that caller will be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

Get the latest headlines sent to your inbox!
View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print
Leave Comments
NBC4's Camp4Kids
NBC4 launched Camp4Kids in 1993, in... Read more
Follow Us
Sign up to receive news and updates that matter to you.
Send Us Your Story Tips
Check Out