Fatal shooting of Baltimore Police Detective Sean Suiter 'not a cold case,' police say

Despite no apparent progress in the investigation into the killing of Baltimore homicide detective Sean Suiter, police say they do not consider it a “cold case.”

Baltimore police chief spokesman T.J. Smith said police continue to receive information in the nearly three-month-old case.

“People are still calling us and telling us things we’re checking out. Nothing has led to an identification or arrest of the person responsible, but we’re encouraged that people are still calling in,” Smith said. “The fact that there’s information that comes in that allows people to follow up, it’s not cold.”

Suiter was shot in the head in a vacant lot in West Baltimore on Nov. 15, and died the next day. Suiter was set to testify on Nov. 16 in front of a federal grand jury investigating a 2010 case in which drugs were planted on a man, and Police Commissioner Kevin Davis later asked the FBI to take over the investigation into Suiter’s death.

Police said on Dec. 27 that the bureau had rejected the request, saying it had no evidence to suggest Suiter’s death was “directly connected” to the corruption probe or any other federal case.

There have been no public updates on the case since then. A $215,000 reward remains unclaimed. It is the only line-of-duty killing of a Baltimore police officer that remains unsolved.

Suiter was investigating a triple homicide when the shooting occurred in the 900 block of Bennett Place. He was shot in the head at close range with his own gun, which was recovered at the scene.

Davis has said that there was evidence of a struggle and that Suiter made a brief radio transmission in which a gunshot can be heard in the background. But others in the department have pushed a theory that Suiter may have taken his own life. The case remains classified by the state medical examiner’s office as a homicide.

Police have not released surveillance video that shows the moments before the shooting, but did not capture the shooting taking place.

“I don’t think it is of value at this point to release,” Smith said. “We’ll see how those conversations continue and if we feel it is something of value. … We haven’t gotten there yet.”

jfenton@baltsun.com

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