By Mike Hellgren

BALTIMORE (WJZ)—Inner Harbor murder. Loved ones of Anthony Black are stunned and heartbroken. His girlfriend came to pick him up after work this weekend, and police say an altercation with a drunken man led to his brutal death.

Mike Hellgren tells us how police made the arrest.

Even though the murder happened early Sunday morning just after 2 a.m., police were still able to get a lot of witnesses who identified the suspect in a lineup.

This crime has shaken up a number of lives.

Those who knew and loved Black describe him as a vibrant, inspiring and hard-working 20-year-old.

He was leaving his shift at the Cheesecake Factory. His fiancee parked near the World Trade Center to pick him up when police say two drunken men approached her.

One of them–24-year-old Matthew Darby–began flirting with her, and she couldn’t get him to leave.

Police say Darby got upset when Black came and told him to stop, saying “Calm down. Your girl is hot looking.”

“Mr. Darby approached Mr. Black and his girlfriend to hit on his girlfriend. Mr. Black just left work, and he said, ‘Guys, get out of here.’ [Darby] began to speak to Black’s girlfriend disrespectfully and an argument ensured which escalated into a fight,” said Detective Vernon Davis, Baltimore City Police.

Detectives say Darby stabbed Black to death.

“Saturday, I saw him coming my way, and we spoke, not knowing that was going to be the last time I would see him,” said Marvin Edmonds, Black’s neighbor.

Edmonds was with him just hours before. He says Black was reserved and respectful.  He was earning money to pay for college.

“It’s a shame the younger generation is trying to do something with their lives, and they are getting tragically killed over nothing,” Edmonds said. “If somebody would try to hit on her, she would ignore it. She wasn’t the type of young girl that if someone tried to approach her…she’d be like, ‘No, I’ve got a fiance.”

Many who work in the area are alarmed at the violence.

“I don’t personally come down here after hours, for anything,” said Kim Goodwin, who works downtown.

“I don’t come down here after hours either.  I wouldn’t feel safe,” said Christina McInnes, who also works downtown.

Police say Darby’s friend tried to get him to leave before things escalated but Darby wouldn’t.  He now faces life in prison.

And Black’s loved ones face life without him.

“He was a quiet kid.  She was a quiet girl.  They were a nice couple,” Edmonds said. “It’s tragic that he lost his life like that.  Now, she’s got nobody.”

Darby is from Frederick.  His record includes a DUI and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was found not guilty of second-degree assault five years ago.

He now faces first- and second-degree murder charges.

Darby is being held without bail.


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