Reporting Alex DeMetrick
BALTIMORE (WJZ)—Murders, multiple shootings and now mass arrests. It’s one of the largest roundups of suspects in recent Baltimore history.
Alex DeMetrick reports drugs and revenge allegedly fueled the violence.
A yearlong cycle of violence began in April 2011 when Dorian Kess was stabbed to death. The very next day, Sky Eye Chopper 13 was over the scene of a triple shooting. Alex Venable was murdered, and two other men were wounded.
Federal and local law enforcement agencies say over the next eight months, revenge shootings claimed one more life and four more injuries.
“A shooting occurs here. It spawns a shooting over here, and another shooting here, and in fact one victim was even allegedly shot twice in this cycle of retaliation,” said Rod Rosenstein, U.S. Attorney for Maryland.
It’s a cycle police allege with three people at its center. Robert Moore, a relative of stabbing victim Kess, his wife Sarah Hooker, and Hooker’s brother Donnie Adams, are each charged with murder.
Another five suspects were also arrested on murder and attempted murder charges. Here’s how:
“Surveillance, court-ordered wire taps, witness interviews both in and outside the grand jury, forensic work, cell phone tower tracking and other investigative tools,” said Gregg Bernstein, Baltimore State’s Attorney.
Charges also extend to seized cocaine– five kilos worth — which also brought six more arrests for a total of 14.
According to law enforcement, cooperation among agencies is going to mean more crackdowns and arrests in the future.
“This law enforcement team is focused and dedicated to making an impact here in the city of Baltimore, and you’re seeing it today and you’ll be seeing it in the future,” said Carl Kotowski, DEA special agent.
Agencies involved in the mass arrests were Baltimore City police, the State’s and U.S. Attorney’s office, and the DEA.