WOODLAWN, Md. (WJZ) — The family of Sagar Ghimire is devastated by his murder. Ghimire was a 24-year-old Nepalese immigrant who recently moved to Woodlawn in Baltimore County and was killed when police say his neighbor Everton Brown opened fire on the community early Saturday morning.
“Sagar was a very kind and generous person. He would always take care of his family first,“ his cousin Karan Ghimire told WJZ Investigator Mike Hellgren.READ MORE: Police Continue To Investigate Woodlawn Shooter's Background, Neighbors Say They Have Been Complaining For Years
Sagar’s uncle Kaptan Ghimire said the family is still in shock. “He was our bright light.”
Sagar was working on his master’s degree.
Police said Brown also killed husband and wife Ismael Quintanilla and Sara Alacote after he stormed into their house. The couple’s 17-year-old son survived. Candles and flowers sat on the front steps of what’s left of their home Tuesday night as loved ones gathered to remember them.
Investigators believe Brown set off an explosion in his own home that left the property in shambles. He was later killed by police.
Videos Brown posted to YouTube shed new light on his troubling, paranoid past behavior and show several encounters with police.
He believed the federal government was spying on his home using drones and entering the property.
He even protested outside The White House demanding the president stop the surveillance.
“I’m very thankful for the officers who came and took action, but at the same time, this could’ve been avoided,“ Ghimire’s cousin Kanchan Ghimire told Hellgren. “We’ve lost a brother, son, a friend. He was the backbone of this family. For me, I am more angry… If someone is complaining that this guy has a mental illness, how come nobody questioned him when he was buying the weapon?“
Maryland State Police said Brown legally owned two handguns purchased in 1989 and 2007.
“He did not have a Handgun Qualification License (HQL), which has been needed for purchasing, transferring, or renting a regulated firearm since October 1, 2013. He did not need an HQL for regulated firearms he purchased prior to October 1, 2013,” an agency spokesperson wrote to WJZ.
— Mike Hellgren (@HellgrenWJZ) May 11, 2021
Neighbors describe brown as a “ticking time bomb.“ They told Helgren they had repeatedly complained about him to the homeowners’ association and law enforcement for more than 20 years.
Police said Brown also had at least three peace orders filed against him since 2008 including one that was currently in effect. They are looking at his contacts with multiple law enforcement agencies over the past 30 years.
“We are committed to picking through every piece of evidence, every report, every encounter,” Baltimore County Police Chief Melissa Hyatt said this week. “But mental illness in itself is not a crime so part of what we are doing is looking through to see what could’ve been points of interaction.”
Lawyer Adam Ruther of Rosenberg, Martin and Greenberg told Hellgren peace orders are often a first line of defense in these cases but said, “If a judge issues one of these peace orders, it’s only as good as the paper it’s written on. It provides for a criminal penalty of up to 90 days if you violate it. If someone is not going to be deterred by the threat of spending 90 days in jail, the piece of paper doesn’t stop them from doing something else.”
He said there can also be an emergency petition for a mental health evaluation but the bar is high.
“If a neighbor is harassing, if a neighbor is being a nuisance, that’s not usually the kind of thing that would move to the level of an emergency evaluation,” Ruther said.