Virginia

Fatal Shooting of 25-Year-Old Marks 7th Homicide in DC This Year

Last year, D.C. saw a spike in homicides

The killing of a 25-year-old man in the District marks the city's seventh homicide of the year, just one week in to 2019.

Damon Dukes, of Northwest, D.C., died Monday, one day after being found suffering life-threatening injuries from an apparent shooting on the 200 block of V Street Northwest.

Police have not released any information about who may have shot Dukes.

Seven days into 2018, one person had been killed in the District, according to police data. A total of 157 homicides were reported by police last year.

Firefighters rushing to extinguish a blaze in the 3300 block of Ely Place in Southeast D.C. found 60-year-old Joseph Burgess and 50-year-old Regina Bowman dead. Both had been choked and beaten, the medical examiner found. Their deaths were ruled homicides, but no suspect has been identified.

D.C. police said officers went to the building in the 2800 block of Wisconsin Avenue NW about 4:14 a.m. Sunday and found 36-year-old Vongell Lugo inside a hallway suffering from multiple stab wounds.

Medics declared Lugo dead at the scene, police said. Police arrested 26-year-old Collin J. Potter of Quantico, Virginia. He was charged with first degree murder.

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Police reported two other homicides Sunday: An unnamed man shot on the Unit Block of O Street Northwest and later died; James Lamont Stewart, 28, of Capitol Heights, was shot on the 800 Block of Varnum Street NW and died from his injuries.

On New Year's Day, police went into a residential building on the 4200 block of Barnaby Road SE, where a shooting had been reported. Police say 19-year-old Shamar Marbury, of Southeast, died at the hospital from gunshot wounds.

Overall, police data says overall violent crime decreased in the past two years, but homicides did increase. 

While at the scene of the homicide of Randall Francis, a valedictorian graduate of Eastern High School, Police Chief Pete Newsham attributed the increase to the number of illegal guns on the city's streets.

"We have to start taking illegal firearms very seriously in our city. Got another young man over there who lost his life as a result of an illegal firearm," Newsham said.

ANC Commissioner Kathy Henderson said outside drug dealers are also bringing trouble into her Ward 8 neighborhood.

"People that come over here and they think that this continues to be the epicenter for drug activity, it is not," she said. "They are relics. That's a bygone day, and they can't come back over here to continue their drug activity. We've moved on from that."

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