7 of 9 homicides Black lives

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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 affect the mental health, economic well-being and self-images of the region’s Black neighborhoods.

Out of the nine murders, thus far, in 2014—seven were Black and five were Black men.

January Homicides (9)

JAN. 9—Imani Porter, a 20-year-old Black male from Point Breeze, was found fatally shot in the head in the driver’s side of his vehicle parked in the parking lot of the Steak ‘n Shake restaurant, in Homestead, after an alleged drug deal gone bad. Porter reportedly met with two males to sell them heroine; when they entered the vehicle they pulled out a gun and one of the males shot him in the head. He was taken to UPMC Mercy Hospital; where he later died. Jaron Young, who will be charged as an adult, and Paul Sanders have been charged with criminal homicide, robbery and conspiracy. Young is awaiting trial and Sanders has not been apprehended.

JAN. 15—Amy Gorsuch, a 40-year-old White female from Pittsburgh was found dead with a gunshot wound to the head, at the residence she once shared with her estranged husband, Richard Gorsuch, on Dinsmore Avenue in Crafton. Gorsuch and Richard Gorsuch had reportedly been separated for months. Gorsuch allegedly went to the home after an evening with her brother, while their three children were at her father’s house, where she had been living. After she did not return, her father went to the house and found her body, along with Richard Gorsuch’s body. Richard Gorsuch allegedly shot her and then himself. It has been ruled a murder-suicide.

JAN. 16—Frederick Douglas Jr., of Homewood, was found lying on the ground in the 7100 block of Kedron Street, in Homewood, with gunshot wounds to his stomach and leg. He was pronounced dead at the scene. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

JAN. 20—Hosea Davis, a 37-year-old Black male from Penn Hills, was found dead with multiple gunshot wounds to the torso in the middle of an alley in the 6400 block of Rapidan Way in Larimer. Davis was reportedly shot and then shot several additional times at close range while he was already on the ground. He was pronounced dead at the scene. A warrant has been issued for Rodney Howard. He is facing a charge of criminal homicide and has not been apprehended.

JAN. 23—Catherine Willett, a 79-year-old White female from Bloomfield was found in the bedroom of their home at 4650 Rosina Way in Bloomfield with a gunshot wound.  Her husband, Phillip Willett, reportedly was recently diagnosed with terminal cancer. He allegedly shot her and then tried to shoot himself, but the gun jammed. He is charged with criminal homicide and is awaiting trial.

JAN. 23—Cheralynn Sabatasso, a 36-year-old Black female from Knoxville, was found shot in the head in the driver’s seat, along with Jason Eubanks, at the intersection of Grimes Avenue and Zara Street, in Knoxville. She was pronounced dead at the scene. Antoine Ward is charged with two counts of criminal homicide and two counts of firearms violation.

JAN. 23—Jason Eubanks, a 36-year-old Black male from Knoxville, was found shot in the head in the passenger’s side of a vehicle, along with Cheralynn Sabatasso, at the intersection of Grimes Avenue and Zara Street. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Antoine Ward is charged with two counts of criminal homicide and two counts of firearms violation.

JAN. 27—Charles Hull, a 56-year-old Black male from Penn Hills, was shot and killed by a Penn Hills police officer during a standoff at a home in the 10000 block of Calvin Street in Penn Hills. Hull reportedly went to the home of his girlfriend and fired shots into the home. When police arrived, Hull was in the house and his girlfriend ran outside to safety. As they assisted her to safety, Hull allegedly emerged with a gun and aiming it at officers. After ignoring several commands to put down the weapon, Hull was shot. He was taken to a local hospital; where he later died. It was reported by other media outlets that Hull may have been upset because he was going to be arraigned soon for an incident that occurred in October 2013. The officer has been placed on administrative leave while the incident is further investigated, which is standard protocol.

JAN. 28—Susan Sidney, a 25-year-old Black female from McKeesport, was found fatally shot in the chest and arm in the 900 block of McCleary Street, in McKeesport, while walking with a male to a  convenient store. Sidney was taken to UPMC McKeesport Hospital; where she later died. It is believed she was not the intended target, but that the male she was walking with was. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

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