Arrest made in Pr. George's homicide
Police in Prince George's County have made three arrests in the stabbing death of a Chillum man on New Year's Day, bringing the number of criminal homicides that detectives have closed this year to four, authorities announced Tuesday.
That development, along with a six-day lull in the slayings that have plagued Prince George's County in 2011, gave county officials some cause to be optimistic Tuesday at County Executive Rushern L. Baker III's first news conference to discuss the spate of murders.
Baker, Prince George's Police Chief Mark Magaw and other law enforcement officials touted their efforts to stem the violence at the news conference.
"My job as county executive is to give the men and women of our public safety the resources they need to address these problems," Baker said. "Their job is to get the job done, and I have not been disappointed with the work that Chief Magaw, his command staff, the rank-and-file of the police department have done. They have swiftly gone after and made the change necessary to bring about progress that we've seen over the last couple of days."
Charged in connection with the New Year's Day slaying of 58-year-old Ansel Donovan Whitelocke were Verlyncia Coleman, 21; Demarko Williams, 23; and David Wright, 28, authorities said.
Coleman knew Whitelocke, Magaw said, and she apparently hatched a scheme with Wright and Williams to rob him. During the course of that robbery, Magaw said, Whitelocke was stabbed to death.
The homicide was the first of 13 Prince George's has seen so far this year. Police have said only two of the cases appear connected -- and those cases are essentially a double murder.
Many of the other slayings are believed to be drug-related; in all but a few, investigators believe the victims either knew or were specifically targeted by their attackers.
Aside from news of the arrest, Baker and Magaw offered very little new information on any of the killings or their efforts to stop them. They re-emphasized partnerships the police department has forged with federal agencies and municipal police departments and discussed their ongoing efforts to beef up enforcement inside the Beltway.
Sheriff Melvin High and State's Attorney Angela Alsobrooks also spoke of their efforts to help stem the violence. Alsobrooks' presence in itself was somewhat unusual; in the past few years, the state's attorney has not been a fixture at police department press conferences.
| January 18, 2011; 1:41 PM ET
Categories: Homicide, Matt Zapotosky, Pr. George's, Updates
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