A 25-year-old Baltimore man arrested after exchanging gunfire with police officers last week has been charged in the fatal shooting of 13-year-old DiAndre Barnes the previous day, Baltimore police said Monday.
Anthony Jerome Clark Jr., whose nickname is "Trouble," has also been charged in the nonfatal shooting of a 21-year-old man injured in the same June 11 incident. Police believe the second victim, who has not been identified, was the intended target rather than DiAndre.
Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said police began looking for Clark the day of the shooting, after members of the community identified him by his nickname and by the cast he was wearing on one arm. The next day, officers on patrol spotted Clark and confronted him.
Clark ran, turning and firing at officers as the officers fired back, Davis said. Neither he nor the officers were injured in the exchange, Davis said, and Clark eventually surrendered to police after a brief barricade situation on a roof on Fremont Avenue.
Police officers later received a warrant to search a home associated with Clark. There they found a .40-caliber handgun that was matched to the bullet that killed DiAndre, Davis said.
Clark is charged with a number of crimes related to the two incidents, including first-degree murder in the killing of DiAndre, attempted first-degree murder in the shooting of the second victim, and assault charges associated with his firing at the officers, Davis said.
Davis described Clark as "no stranger to our criminal justice system" — he has a long criminal record — and said he deserved a tough prison sentence.
"A person who takes the life of a 13-year-old and then has the intestinal fortitude to shoot at several police officers during a foot chase is the type of person who needs to be behind bars and behind bars for a long, long time," Davis said. "Baltimore is a safer place now that this killer is off the street."
Police said the motive for the shooting appeared to be a fight that occurred earlier in the day or the day before, and that "probably had a gang nexus to it." Police do not believe DiAndre was involved in the dispute.
Davis noted that some people have questioned why the boy was out on the street at the time of the shooting, which occurred about 1:30 a.m. in the 900 block of Pennsylvania Ave. But, he said, "Quite frankly, it doesn't matter. He was out at 1:30 a.m. and he was murdered."
Dozens of community members and police officers gathered near the site of the shooting last week to honor the teen. He was killed less than a half-mile from his school, Booker T. Washington Middle School.
"The community in general has a lot of questions about how a 13-year-old life can be taken like that," Davis said. He said making an arrest in the case brought the Police Department "a great deal of satisfaction."
Clark remains behind bars. He had no attorney listed in court records as of Monday.
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for July 7.