While February is a month to celebrate the achievements and heritage of African-Americans, it is beginning to be overshadowed by the Black on Black violence. With only two months into 2012, we are already on track to having a deadlier year than the last. This time last year there were only 13 homicides. Now there are 15, and while that may only be two more, those are still more lives that did not have to be lost.
For instance, young Donovan McKee, an 11-year-old boy who was beat to death with various objects because his mother’s boyfriend felt he needed to “discipline” the young boy. His discipline has left a mother with one less son, a family without a brother and taken away yet another young person’s future. And for what? Nothing could have been worth his life.
Instead of dwindling, the list is getting longer. We need a call to action to the community. We need to stop the violence. We cannot afford to continue to lose our people to these senseless acts. It takes everyone-the residents, the police, the churches and the community organizations to come together to fight this war and win. We cannot lose another.
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 15 murders, thus far, in 2012, 12 were Black and 11 were Black males.
FEBRUARY HOMICIDES (9)
FEB. 8—Melissa Bowers, a 36-year-old White female from Carnegie, was stabbed to death during a domestic altercation with her on and off again boyfriend at a home on Railroad Avenue in Carnegie. Jeffrey Maloy is charged with homicide and is currently awaiting trial.
FEB. 9—David Loftin, a 43-year-old Black male from Hazelwood, was found shot to death in the woods behind the Mon View Apartment Complex in West Mifflin by authorities who were searching for a missing man. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
FEB. 10—Sean Blackwell, a 35-year-old Black male from Manchester, was found with a gunshot wound to the chest in the kitchen of an apartment in the 1700 block of Termon Avenue in the North Side, after an apparent drug deal gone bad. He was taken to Allegheny General Hospital, where he later died. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
FEB. 11—Roman Herring, a 21-year-old Black male from Pittsburgh, was found fatally shot inside of a car in the 1400 block of Hill Avenue in Wilkinsburg. He was with a friend. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
FEB. 11—Leron Brown, a 21-year-old Black male from Wall, was found shot to death in a vehicle in the 1400 block of Hill Avenue in Wilkinsburg. He was found with Roman Herring. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
FEB. 13—Donovan McKee, an 11-year-old Black male from Knoxville, was fatally beaten to death by his mother’s boyfriend at the apartment where they lived, 107 Knox Ave., in Knoxville. McKee had allegedly been struck with Anthony Bush’s hand and several objects around the apartment, while his mother was at work. He was taken to UPMC Mercy Hospital, then later to Children’s Hospital, where he later died. Bush is charged with criminal homicide and endangering the welfare of children. He is currently awaiting trial.
FEB. 22—Devonte Snowden, a 19-year-old Black male from Lincoln-Lemington, was found dead with gunshot wounds to the face in his vehicle in the 7200 block of Somerset Street in the Lincoln-Lemington area. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
FEB. 23—Arron Crable, a 23-year-old Black male from Clairton, was fatally shot in the parking lot of the Hi View Gardens Apartment at 6th Street in McKeesport. He had been greeting his sister, who had arrived in another vehicle, when shots were fired. He was struck in the trunk and his sister was also hit. His sister survived but he was taken to UPMC McKeesport, where he later died. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
FEB. 28—Michael Haines, a 31-year-old White male from East Pittsburgh, was found shot in the back of the head in the back of an abandoned Garda Cash Logistics truck, the company where he had been employed. It seemed to have been a heist. Along with more than $2 million, Haines’ partner that day was also missing, Kenneth Konias Jr. He is still at large. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
JANUARY HOMICIDES (6)
JAN. 1—Shateecha Roach, a 27-year-old Black female from Beltzhoover, was fatally shot while a patron inside Fever Night Club, in the Strip District, when a fight broke out and gun fire erupted. She was taken to UPMC Presbyterian Hospital, where she later died. Three others were injured. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
JAN. 2—Chaz Anger, a 21-year-old Black male from Pittsburgh, was shot to death in the back and neck outside of a Brighton Heights apartment at 3437 Fleming Ave., in the North Side. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
JAN. 6—Mark Senay, a 40-year-old White male from Greenfield, found dead with a gunshot wound to the head in his home in the 1400 block of Bristol Street in Greenfield. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
JAN. 14—Daniel Peek, a 16-year-old Black male from Duquesne, was fatally shot during a family gathering at his home at the Parkview Manor Apartments in the 2500 block of Duquesne Place Drive, in Duquesne. He was reportedly hit by bullets that passed through the door during a gunfight in the hallway. No one was charged; the investigation is ongoing.
JAN. 24—Quinn White, a 24-year-old Black male from McKees Rocks, was found dead with a gunshot wound to the head in the 100 block of Churchill Street in McKees Rocks. He had allegedly been walking home and in the process of making a call when he was killed. No one has been charged; the investigation is ongoing.
JAN. 29—Kevin Hill, a 31-year-old Black male from South Side, was fatally stabbed in the neck at a home at 120 Amanda Avenue, in Mount Oliver, after an alleged argument. He had been taken to UPMC Mercy Hospital, where he later died. Donald Finnigan has been charged with the homicide and is currently awaiting trial.