55 of 78 homicides Black lives

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As 2013 rapidly approaches its end, the year’s homicides continue to move closer to meeting the high total of 2012, which was 96 lives. Thus far in 2013, as of the end of October, there have been 78 homicides, 55 of them being our young Black brothers and sisters.

It is no longer those living the “street life” who are getting caught up, but innocent individuals who were merely at the wrong place at the wrong time when someone else took it upon themselves to decide when to end their lives.

For instance, Omar Islam, 21, who was merely standing at the bus stop on the East Busway, waiting for a bus, when three individuals who had nothing better to do than look for someone to rob, shot him. They didn’t just shoot him once, but they shot him multiple times after he reportedly had already handed over his valuables. It’s not bad enough that the individuals charged with his death, ages 16 and 20, both of working age, robbed him instead of going out and working for what they wanted, but they had to kill him afterwards. That was someone’s loved one. Not only is Islam’s family affected by this tragedy, but the young lives of these two individuals will forever be changed as well.

Then there’s the death of Donald Lowry, who was shot and killed in a bar when someone, who WTAE reported had been in a previous confrontation, left and came back, exchanged words with Lowry and shot him. Another person was also injured. Lowry was a husband, a father of five and a grandfather. Now his family is missing a loved one all because someone decided to use a gun to control their anger.

And sadly there’s the shooting deaths of 21-year-old Jasmine Morris and Demetrius Broadnax, 27, who were enjoying themselves at a private club in Homewood, when someone decided to open fire, not only killing them, but also injuring several others. Then we, as a community, wonder why there are no good places to patronize and why others do not want our events held in their establishments.

Although there were individuals charged in the death of Islam, no one has been charged in the deaths of Lowry, Morris and Broadnax. They happened in well-attended establishments, with many witnesses, someone had to see something. But because no one will take a stand and come forward with what they know, these individuals continue to walk our streets, with the ability to re-strike at anytime. We cannot stand for silence. It’s not snitching, it’s being a responsible citizen. It’s only snitching if you’re involved. Just think, what if it was your loved one?

As part of an ongoing effort to heighten awareness about the effects of murder in Black communities, the New Pittsburgh Courier will compile a list of homicides in the County each month. It is our hope that as the list of victims grows, so will a true understanding of how these lost lives effect the mental health, economic well-being and self-images of the region’s Black neighborhoods.

Out of the 78 murders, thus far, in 2013—55 were Black and 47 were Black men.

OCTOBER HOMICIDES (7)

OCT. 8—Omar Islam, a 21-year-old Black male from the North Side, was shot multiple times and found dead at the inbound Homewood Bus Shelter on the East Busway, near Homewood Avenue. He had been waiting for a bus when three males approached him, attempted to rob him and a fight broke out. He was shot and his property was stolen. Authorities report that the three had collectively planned to commit a robbery. They initially attempted to use Facebook, but were unsuccessful. Then they walked to a Homewood ATM with the intention of robbing a customer, but after no one arrived, they began to walk towards the busway. Authorities have charged Jordan Bey with criminal homicide, robbery and carrying a firearm without a license, and Desmond Young with criminal homicide, robbery and criminal conspiracy. They are awaiting trial. The third individual has not been named and was reported to be the look out.

OCT. 15—Calvin Doswell, a 30-year-old Black male from Homewood, was found fatally shot with multiple gunshot wounds to the chest in the 1300 block of Oberlin Street in the Lincoln-Lemington area. Doswell was reportedly seen arguing with two individuals, when one pulled out a gun and fired shots. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

OCT. 18—Donald Lowry, a 46-year-old Black male from Sheridan, was shot in the back while at JR’s Bar at 520 East Ohio St., in the North Side. He was standing at the bar when a male approached him, they exchanged words and the man pulled out a pistol and fired multiple shots as Lowry tried to run away. A man was also shot in the buttocks and a bouncer, who had tried to detain the shooter, was injured when another male hit him over the head with a beer bottle. The two left. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

OCT. 20—Curtis Edmonds, a 37-year-old Black male from the North Side, was fatally shot while invading the home of his ex-girlfriend in the 3400 block of Fleming Avenue in Brighton Heights. Edmonds reportedly called his ex-girlfriend and said he was coming over, in which she then said no and informed him that she had company. Edmonds arrived, forced his way into the home by allegedly punching his ex in the face and assaulting her with a firearm. He then went after her current boyfriend, who told authorities he shot Edmonds after he had pointed a gun at him. There were two children in the home at the time of the incident; they were unharmed. It is unknown if the shooter will face charges, but he did have a permit to carry and the gun was registered to him; the investigation is ongoing.

OCT. 20—Jasmine Morris, a 21-year-old Black female from Penn Hills, was found shot to death at a private club in the 7100 block of Kelly Street. She was pronounced dead at the scene. One other was killed and multiple people were injured. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

OCT. 20—Demetrius Broadnax, a 27-year-old Black male from Monroeville, was found shot to death at a private club in the 7100 block of Kelly Street. He was pronounced dead at the scene. One other was killed and multiple people were injured. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

OCT. 27—Nicholas Fiumara, a 49-year-old White male from Mt. Oliver, was fatally shot to death in the 100 block of Stramm Avenue in Mount Oliver. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

JANUARY HOMICIDES (6)

JAN. 1—Ka’Sandra Wade, a 33-year-old Black female from Larimer, was found dead with multiple gunshot wounds in her Lowell Street home when authorities visited her residence after receiving concerns from relatives. Wade was killed by her boyfriend, Anthony Brown, one day after authorities, who had answered a 9-1-1 call she placed, left without investigating the call when Brown came to the window and told them everything was okay. Brown later shot himself after a brief police standoff.

JAN. 10—Deondre Pace, a 16-year-old Black male from Beltzhoover, was found laying on the sidewalk with multiple shots to the torso in front of Sheffield Funeral Home near Beltzhoover Avenue and Climax Street, in Beltzhoover. He had been leaving a convenience store near his home, when two men approached him and opened fire. Pace was taken to UPMC Mercy Hospital, where he later died. Ashanti Montgomery has been charged with criminal homicide, firearms not carried without a license and criminal conspiracy.

JAN. 11—Jayemond Bailey, a 34-year-old Black male from McKeesport, was shot to death at Street Stars bar, on Sixth Avenue in McKeesport. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

JAN. 13—Lou Auer, a 37-year-old White male from East Liberty, was found dead with a gunshot wound to the torso outside of 322 N. Negley Ave., in East Liberty. He was pronounced dead at the scene. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

JAN. 23—Michael Andrews, a 27-year-old Black male from East Hills, was found fatally shot during an alleged home invasion in the 5300 block of Brown Way in Garfield. A masked man knocked on the door of the home that was occupied by two men. When one of the males answered the door, he was shot in the face. After hearing the shot, the other male in the residence got a gun and exchanged shots with the masked man. Andrews was found in front of the home and was taken to UPMC Presbyterian Hospital, where he later died. The other men were wounded. Authorities did not clarify if Andrews lived at the house or was the intruder. The investigation is ongoing.

JAN. 28—Isaiah Dent, a 61-year-old Black male from McKees Rocks, was found beaten to death in the bathroom of his Hays Manor apartment on Locust Street in McKees Rocks. Sean Overton has been charged with criminal homicide, robbery and tampering with or fabricating physical evidence. He is awaiting trial.

FEBRUARY HOMICIDES (5)

FEB. 4—Maurice Bruce, a 32-year-old Black male from Pittsburgh, was found shot to death in the bushes near the intersection of Hamilton Avenue and Sterrett Street, in Homewood, by an individual walking by. He was reportedly shot after leaving a local bar earlier in the day and had been in the bushes for hours. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

FEB. 19—Constance Johnston, a 76-year-old White female from Richland Township, was stabbed to death from behind by her grandson as she sat, eating breakfast, in the kitchen of her Richland Township home in the 3900 block of Gibson Road, with her husband. Her grandson, Levi Daniel Starver, allegedly stabbed her after the archangel Michael told him to kill her while he was on the computer. Starver has been charged with criminal homicide.

FEB. 23—Brian Wright Jr., a 26-year-old Black male from Homewood, was found with a gunshot wound to the chest at the intersection of Tangent Way and Enterprise Street in Larimer. Wright was pronounced dead at the scene. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

FEB. 24—Andre Broadie, a 25-year-old Black male from Penn Hills, was shot in the head inside a home in the 5100 block of Columbo Street in Garfield when he and another male entered the home of a person they knew. It has been reported that Broadie was thought to be an intruder. Investigators are calling it a case of mistaken identity. It is unknown if charges will be filed. The investigation is ongoing.

FEB. 28—Tiona Jackson, a 28-year-old Black female from the Hill District, was shot to death while leaving Red’s Ringside Café near the intersection of East Warrington and Vincent Street in Beltzhoover. A male was also injured. Jackson was pronounced dead at the scene. James Lawrence has been charged with criminal homicide.

MARCH HOMICIDES (9)

MARCH 3—John Sumpter, a 32-year-old Black male of Wilkinsburg, was fatally shot multiple times while sitting in his vehicle outside of Club Pink, a Munhall Strip Club in the 900 block of East Eighth Avenue, after a fight earlier that evening. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Paul Barrone is charged with homicide and is awaiting trial.

MARCH 6—Maurice Penny, a 24-year-old Black male from McKees Rocks, was found dead with multiple shots when a shootout erupted in the hallway of an apartment building in the 500 block of Penn Avenue in Friendship. Penny was a rapper also known as “Big Penny.” No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

MARCH 11—James Adams, a 29-year-old White male from Imperial, was fatally shot in the head while inside the Fort Pitt Inn bar in North Fayette after a man, who was also inside, reportedly became angry after a text message conversation with his girlfriend, walked out and came back in with three handguns. David Mazzocco is charged with homicide, attempted homicide, two counts of aggravated assault, 11 counts of reckless endangerment and weapons violations. He is awaiting trial.

MARCH 19—Lora Hoffman, a 31-year-old White female from Sheraden, was allegedly stabbed to death by her brother in her Sheraden home in the 3600 block of Allendale Circle when they were allegedly arguing over him lying on the couch while the family was watching television. He reportedly walked into the kitchen, grabbed a knife and returned stabbing her multiple times in the head, face and neck. She was pronounced dead at the scene. Chris Hoffman is charged with homicide and is awaiting trial.

MARCH 26—Terrance Moore, a 34-year-old Black male from Clairton, died hours after being shot in his car during a gunfight outside a home on Halcomb Avenue. He was taken to Allegheny General Hospital, where he later died. Others were also injured. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
MARCH 28—Bernadette Scholl, a 74-year-old White female from Munhall, died from injuries she sustained when she was allegedly shot by her son, Anthony Scholl, in her Munhall home on Longfellow Drive. She was found when officers entered her home after a standoff with her son. Anthony Scholl is charged with homicide and weapons violations. He is awaiting trial.

MARCH 29—Kellcy Thomas, an 18-year-old Black male from McKeesport, was found with gunshot wounds to the trunk in the 1400 block of Evans Avenue. He had been taken to UPMC McKeesport, where he later died. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

MARCH 30—Steven Lee Jr., a 21-year-old Black male from McKees Rocks, was fatally shot abroad a “party bus” near Chartiers Street in Sheraden after a fight reportedly broke out. He was taken to Allegheny General Hospital, where he later died. James Lawrence has been charged with criminal homicide.

MARCH 30—Mark Rucker, a 21-year-old Black male from Monroeville, was found shot to death in the stairwell of a building in the Cambridge Square housing complex. He was allegedly shot in the chest and died at the scene after another man accused Rucker of sleeping with his girlfriend. Jamey McKee has been charged with homicide.

MARCH 31—Chad Vida, a 40-year-old White male from Etna, was found in the outbound lanes of Liberty Avenue, hit by a vehicle, in the 4000 block of Liberty Avenue near the Bloomfield Bridge. He had allegedly gotten into a verbal altercation with the driver who hit him. He was taken to a local hospital; where he later died. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing. Vida was recently added to the homicide list.

APRIL HOMICIDES (8)

APRIL 2—Dwan Jones, a 41-year-old Black male from Mount Oliver, died after being struck by a car in February at the intersection of Frankstown and Paulson Avenues. He allegedly was hit by the mother of his three children, Damona Anderson, after they had gotten into an argument. Anderson reportedly hit and drove over Jones and then took money from his pocket. Jones was taken to a local hospital, where he died a month later. Anderson is charged with homicide, aggravated assault and robbery. She is awaiting her trial.

APRIL 6—Tyrone Milton, a 50-year-old Black male from Braddock, was fatally shot in the head during a confrontation between two men at Deb’s Place, a bar in Miller Avenue in Rankin. Milton reportedly was not involved in the confrontation.  He was taken to UPMC Presbyterian Hospital, where he later died. An arrest warrant has been issued for Darryl Reaves. He is charged with homicide, aggravated assault, reckless endangerment and weapons violations. He is still at large.

APRIL 10—Monica Proviano, a 28-year-old Black woman from Wilkinsburg, was found shot to death on Trenton Avenue in Wilkinsburg. She allegedly had been robbed by two men when she answered a call for a jitney. The two men had reportedly planned the incident. She was robbed, shot and then her vehicle was taken. Timothy Brock Jr. and William McGraw are charged with homicide, conspiracy, robbery and robbery of a vehicle. They are awaiting their trials.

APRIL 10—Leon Wilson, a 42-year-old Black male from Homewood, was found with multiple shots to the chest, arm and head in an upstairs hallway of a home at 586 Oakwood St., in Homewood. Wilson was allegedly shot after a domestic dispute with his fiancée. His fiancée had called her daughter, who also brought her boyfriend, a Pennsylvania State Constable. Wilson was allegedly packing a bag when he fired shots at his fiancée’s son, hitting him in the shoulder. The constable ordered him to drop the weapon; Wilson allegedly fired another shot and the constable then fired multiple shots. The constable’s name was not released. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

APRIL 11—Loretta Jackson, a 65-year-old Black female from West Mifflin, was found with multiple gunshot wounds in her Patton Street home in West Mifflin. Authorities found her when they answered a call of an alarm being activated and saw a forced entry when they arrived. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

APRIL 13—Dearto Rankin, a 39-year-old Black male from Verona, was found fatally shot in the 600 block of Linden Avenue in East Pittsburgh. He was found when authorities were answering a call about a disturbance involving gunshots. According to reports, Rankin and his brother, Andre Rankin, were arguing when the gun went off. Andre Rankin is charged with homicide. He is awaiting his trial.
APRIL 20—Autumn Klein, a 41-year-old White female of North Oakland, died days after being found in the kitchen of her North Oakland home. She had allegedly been poisoned with cyanide. Robert Ferrante, Klein’s husband, has been charged with her death and is awaiting trial. Klein was recently added to the homicide list.

APRIL 27—Andrew Moore, a 31-year-old White male from Venetia, was shot in the head when he entered Armen’s House of Music on Library Road, in Bethel Park, and attacked the owners. He reportedly entered the store, left, then returned again and assaulted one of the storeowners with a club. Her husband reportedly then shot Moore. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

APRIL 28—Brandon Stokes, a 21-year-old Black male from Penn Hills, died of a gunshot wound to the chest at 8619 Westwood Rd., in Penn Hills, when a gun was fired while another man was removing money from his pocket. The bullet hit another man in the abdomen and then hit Stokes in the chest. He was taken to UPMC Shadyside Hospital; where he later died. Marijuana was reportedly involved. Ronald Riviere has been charged with homicide.

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