29 of 36 homicides Black lives

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There were 9 fewer homicides in April than in March providing some hope. There were only six homicides in April compared to 15 in March. Three of those six were Blacks, which is 50 percent, which is lower than the normal 70 to 80 percent. Another good sign is that arrests have been made in half of the homicides. One because a neighbor held the alleged shooter until police arrived, and another was captured via surveillance video.

Six has been the average number of deaths in three of the first four months. We would like to see that number drop to at least half. Maybe with more surveillance cameras, and concerned neighbors the number of homicides will continue to decrease.

April Homicides (6)

April 1—Dontae Thompson, a 27-year-old Black male was shot multiple times after another vehicle pulled along side him while driving on Henderson Street in Pittsburgh’s Fineview neighborhood. Police discovered him after his car had crashed trough a fence and flipped onto its roof. He was taken to Allegheny General Hospital where he died a few hours later.On April 20, Police arrested Andre Branch-Samuels for the killing after tracking him and his vehicle on surveillance video through several neighborhoods. He is in the Allegheny County Jail awaiting a preliminary hearing scheduled for May 4.

April 6—Brandon Nguyen, a 29-year-old Asian male, was sitting in his car in front of his home on Shadeland Avenue on Pittsburgh’s North Side when another car pulled up and a tall, thin Black male got out and shot Nguyen multiple times before speeding away. Nguyen was pronounced dead at the scene. No arrest has been made. The investigation is ongoing.

April 14—Terence Jackson, a 27-year-old Black male, was shot multiple times inside Red’s Bar on E. Warrington Avenue in Pittsburgh’s Beltzhoover neighborhood. He was taken to UPMC Mercy in critical condition and died about two hours later. Another man who was wounded in the leg during the incident said the shooting started after a scuffle. As yet, police have released no description of the shooter. The investigation is ongoing.

April 15—Derek Schindler, a 30-year-old White male, was fatally shot by Joshua Huber following marijuana and alcohol-fueled argument in Huber’s Etna apartment. Huber’s upstairs neighbor heard the shots and held him at gunpoint with his shotgun until police arrived. Huber is being held in the Allegheny County Jail pending a preliminary hearing.

April 15—Melissa Zuk, a 22-year-old White female, was fatally shot by Joshua Huber following marijuana and alcohol-fueled argument in Huber’s Etna apartment. Huber’s upstairs neighbor heard the shots and held him at gunpoint with his shotgun until police arrived. Huber is being held in the Allegheny County Jail pending a preliminary hearing.

April 26—Aaron Govostes, a 42-year-old Black male, was shot three times in the doorway of his South Oakland home after opening his front door to intruders. His mother and two children were unharmed. Police found marijuana and cash in the house but did not reveal a motive. Govostes was pronounced dead at the scene. His mother described the intruders only as three Black males. As yet, police have no suspects. The investigation is ongoing.

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March Homicides (10)

March 1—Tyrell Jones, a 20-yr-old Black man, was discovered by police shot multiple times near a Homestead playground. No arrest has been made. The investigation is ongoing.

March 5—Michael Watson, a 52-year-old Black Male, was discovered by police fatally wounded in the 600 block of Chataqua Street on Pittsburgh’s North Side. He was taken to Allegheny General Hospital where he died shortly afterward. No suspects have been arrested. The investigation is ongoing.

March 9—Tina Shelton, 37, Shada Mahone, 26, Chanetta Powell, 25, Brittany Powell, 27, all Black females, Baby Boy Powell, 8 months, and Jerry Shelton, a 35-year-old Black male were all executed by a pair of gunmen at a during a cookout in Wilkinsburg. Despite District Attorney Steven A Zappala saying police had good leads on the shooters, no arrests have been made. The investigation is ongoing.

March 12—Derek Price, a 26-year-old Black male was shot multiple times at the Monview Heights housing complex in West Mifflin and later died at the hospital. Hours later police arrested  22-year-old Zyaire James of Clairton and charged him with homicide. He is in the Allegheny County Jail awaiting trial.

March 13—Taevon Harris, a 15-year-old Black male was fatally shot by 19-yea-old Ryzel Barret after the two argued outside Mr. Barrett’s house in Homestead. Police said Barrett then went into the house, argued with his father, shot and wounded him shooting himself.

March 14—Walli Hardy, a 23-year-old Black male, was found shot to death in a neighbor’s kitchen in Homewood. No suspects have been arrested. The investigation is ongoing.

March 23—Linda Katilius, a 63-year-old White female, was strangled to death by her 60-year-old husband Richard, who confessed to the crime. He is in the Allegheny County Jail awaiting trial.

March 24—Saevon Ponder, a 21-year-old Black male, was fatally shot and dumped in Beltzhoover after being kidnapped over what police said was a drug debt. Mitchell Coles has been arrested and charged with the shooting, kidnapping and other charges. He is in the Allegheny County Jail awaiting trial.

March 25—Tarvus Gainer, a 28-year-old Black male, was found fatally shot on Montier Street in Wilkinsburg. No arrests have been made. The investigation continues.

March 27—Glenn Fischer, a 49-year-old White male, was discovered strangled after a disturbance in a neighbor’s home. No charges have yet been filed.

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February Homicides (4)

FEB. 3—Reginald Franklin, a 27-year-old Black male from Homewood, was fatally shot while exiting a store in the 7200 block of Frankstown Avenue in Homewood. He was taken to UPMC Presbyterian where he later died. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing. On the listing provided by the Allegheny County Office of the Medical Examiner, Franklin is identified as Reginald Frankin.

Feb. 15—Calvin Turner, 56, Gerald Johnson, 68, and Darlyn Vance, 73, all Black males died of smoke inhalation and burns after the North Lang Street house where they lived in Homewood was set on fire. Latoya Lyerly, 42, who also lived there confessed to the arson. She is in the Allegheny County Jail.

FEB. 15—Keith Woodard, a 19-year-old Black male from North Side, was found with multiple gunshot wounds in the 100 block of Waldorf Street in the North Side. He was taken to Allegheny General Hospital where he later died. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

FEB. 15—Amelia Roman, a 96-year-old White female from North Braddock, was found dead in her North Braddock home, in the 700 block of Jones Avenue, by individuals conducting a welfare check. It has been reported that she had a heart attack during a home invasion in which she was left bound and gagged. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

FEB. 17—Madeline Bernard, a 65-year-old Black female from Brighton Heights, was found stabbed to death in her home on Verner Court in Brighton Heights. She was pronounced dead at the scene. Madeline Bernard was reportedly stabbed during a domestic altercation with her daughter, Sommer Bernard, who has been charged with criminal homicide.

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January Homicides

JAN. 10—Damion Graham, a 39-year-old Black male from the North Side, was fatally shot during a domestic altercation at a home on Forest Avenue in Bellevue. He was pronounced dead at the scene. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

JAN. 10—Chauncey Howard, a 25-year-old Black male from the North Side, was found fatally shot inside of a vehicle that had crashed into a pole in the 3100 block of Universal Street in Sheraden. He was found by officers who were responding to a call of shots fired in the 3200 block. Howard was pronounced dead at the scene. Tremond Allston and Charles Williams have been charged with criminal homicide, criminal conspiracy, carrying a firearm without a license and more.

JAN. 15—Martell Benton-Bridgett, an 18-year-old Black male from Mc­Kees Rocks, was found at the Holiday Inn Express, in the 800 block of Greentree Road, in Greentree, with multiple gunshot wounds. He was taken to a local hospital where he later died. It has been reported that he had been at a party at the hotel when he was shot. No one had been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

JAN. 19—Shawn Cavender, a 39-year-old Black male from Pittsburgh, was found with multiple gunshot wounds to his lower extremities in a home in the 100 block of Southern Avenue in Mt. Washington. He was taken to UPMC Mercy Hospital where he later died. Reportedly, he had gotten into an argument with another male who fled the scene. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

JAN. 19—Raymond O’Neal, a 17-year-old Black male from Penn Hills, was shot and killed at a home in the 8900 block of Upland Terrace in Penn Hills. It is believed that there was a confrontation and O’Neal was shot. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

JAN. 20—Dante Dawkins, a 29-year-old Black male from Clairton, was shot to death in the 400 block of Windgap Avenue, in Windgap Industrial Park, which is in the Windgap/Esplen area. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Divine Barrett was also found dead at the scene; one was found in a nearby vehicle and the other was lying in the street. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing. (The Office of the Medical Examiner of Allegheny County has Dawkins’ age listed as 39, but other reports and an obituary list him as 29.)

JAN. 20—Divine Barrett, a 24-year-old Black male from New Jersey, was shot to death in the 400 block of Windgap Avenue, in Windgap Industrial Park, which is in the Windgap/Esplen area. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Dante Dawkins was also found dead at the scene; one was found in a nearby vehicle and the other was lying in the street. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

JAN. 21—Bronson Waite, a 23-year-old White male from Brighton Heights, was found shot to death in the torso at a residence in the 3900 block of Vinceton Street in Perry North. He was pronounced dead at the scene. It has been reported that a robbery and the shooting may have taken place the previous day. Daron Clark has been charged with criminal homicide, burglary, robbery, criminal conspiracy, receiving stolen property and possession of a firearm with an altered manufacture number.

JAN. 22—Janese Jackson Talton, a 29-year-old Black female from Penn Hills, was found fatally shot outside of Cliff’s Bar, located at North Lang Avenue in Homewood, by officers who were responding to a ShotSpotter notification. She was pronounced dead at the scene. According to reports, Talton was allegedly shot by Charles McKinney after rejecting his advances. McKinney is charged with criminal homicide, aggravated assault, carrying a firearm without a license, fleeing or attempting to elude police, possession with intent to deliver, recklessly endangering another person and reckless driving.

JAN. 30—Eric Johnson, a 24-year-old Black male from McKeesport, was fatally shot in the area of Fern Alley, in McKeesport, while sitting in a vehicle with another male. Johnson died at the scene; the other male was taken to a local hospital. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.

JAN. 31—Bruce Kelley Jr., a 37-year-old Black male from Pittsburgh, was shot and killed by Port Authority Police after an altercation. According to reports, Kelley and his father were found drinking alcohol at a Wilkinsburg shelter near the East Busway when officers initially encountered them. An altercation broke out and the two got away. After finding the two again and Kelley allegedly refusing orders to put down a knife, officers Tased him. When that did not work, they released their K-9, Aren, and Kelley stabbed him. Officers then shot and killed Kelley. He died of multiple gunshot wounds to the trunk and extremities. Aren also died. The investigation is ongoing.

(Ulish Carter contributed to this article.)

 

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