Police identify man apparently shot while sleeping

Baltimore police have identified the man fatally shot Sunday near Johns Hopkins Hospital as 31-year-old Antonio Laws, who was apparently shot while sleeping in his home.

An officer on patrol in the area of the 500 block of N. Chester St., in the city's Middle East community, was flagged down at about 12:10 p.m. by someone who said a woman was outside screaming and crying, said police spokesman Detective Donny Moses. When the officer arrived on the scene, the woman said, "He's dead upstairs."

The officer entered the home and found Laws upstairs in a second floor bedroom unresponsive and bleeding from multiple gunshot wounds, Moses said. He was pronounced dead at the scene at 12:30 p.m.

Moses said it appeared Laws was sleeping when he was shot. Police did not provide a motive and the case remains open.

Relatives said Laws, who was known as "Tony," was a grandson of the late Bea Gaddy, the former City Councilwoman and advocate for the poor.

"He was a very good young man, a smart young man," said Sandra Chandler, 54, one of Gaddy's daughters. "He had a rough life at the beginning, but was getting back on the right track."

Court records show he had been sentenced to six years in prison on drugs charges in 2003, and had recently been held on sexual assault charges, which were dropped two months later. Chandler said Laws had been working at a downtown restaurant and was awaiting the birth of his first child.

The family is struggling to come up with money for his funeral, she said, and relatives are fearful for their safety because the killing happened so close to their Bea Gaddy Women and Children for Center, which is in the 400 block of N. Chester St.

Police also identified two homicide victims from last week who had not been initially identified pending notification of their next of kin.

-Janice Drayton, 51, was the woman killed in the 900 block of Leadenhall St. on Friday; police say her boyfriend Gary Allmond has been charged in her death.

-Police say the man killed Aug. 28 in the 2800 block of Round Rd. was identified as Dewayne Jones. That case remains open. justin.fenton@baltsun.com

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