In October, six people were murdered in Allegheny County, and another from West Virginia died in a local hospital after her fiancée set her on fire. That perpetrator is in custody, as are three others. But that leaves three cases with, as yet, no known culprit. In seven of October’s homicides, six of the victims were Black.
OCT. 4—Belinda Cox, a 48-year-old Black female from Beckley, WV., died at the West Penn Burn Center from injuries she received after her fiancée, 47-year-old Dwayne Lane, doused her with gasoline and set her on fire Sept. 17. He is awaiting trial in Raleigh County, WV.
OCT. 8—Alina Sheykhet, a 20-year-old White female Pitt student, was allegedly beaten with a claw hammer and stabbed to death in her apartment by her ex-boyfriend Mathew Darby, a 21-year-old Black male against whom she had a Protection From Abuse order and who had been released on bond despite pending rape and criminal trespass charges. He was arrested trying to break into a house in Myrtle Beach, S.C. He is scheduled to be extradited back to Pittsburgh Nov. 3.
OCT. 11—Lezra Rice, a 15-year-old Black male from Braddock, was found by police in a Duquesne alley shot multiple times. He died late at UPMC McKeesport. Police have charged Thomas McKissick, 16, of Duquesne with killing Rice during an alleged drug deal. McKissick, police said, shot another teen who had met him to buy Marijuana one night earlier—the same gun was used in both shootings. McKissick is in custody pending a Nov. 17 preliminary hearing.
OCT. 14—Wyatt Gaza, a 28-year-old Black male, was killed in a daylight shootout with 28-year-old Damien Ashley on Jenny Lind Street in McKeesport. Ashley, who was also shot in the exchange, drove himself to UPMC McKeesport for treatment. He has been charged with homicide.
OCT. 20—Jerry Alston, a 39-year-old Black male, was found fatally shot by Penn Hills police in his home on Schley Street. Police have no motive and have not identified a suspect. The investigation is ongoing.
OCT. 23—Paul Dale Hinton, a 43-year-old Black male, was found under a car on Race Street in Homewood with a fatal gunshot wound to the chest. Police have not yet identified a suspect. The investigation is ongoing.
OCT. 23—Jason Estes, a 20-year-old Black male from Shadyside, was found by police with a fatal gunshot wound to the head on Brushton Avenue in Homewood. He was taken to UPMC Presbyterian Hospital where he died about three hours later. Police have not yet identified a suspect. The investigation is ongoing.