The Aberdeen Police Department arrested three young people and charged them with possessing stolen guns after they were accused of shooting at a 15-year-old as part of an alleged drug deal.
Ramon Mendoza, 21; Justin Taylor, 17; and Jeremy Taylor, 17, all of Aberdeen, were each charged with two counts of possessing stolen firearms, according to the release and electronic court records. Both teens have been charged as adults.
Aberdeen police responded to the unit block of Liberty Street at approximately 11 p.m. Thursday, Feb 20, for a report of shots fired. There, they met a woman who told officers her son had been shot at, according to a news release from the department.
Police found that the juvenile — who has not been named — had connected with somebody on Instagram to buy marijuana. After the terms of the sale had been negotiated, police said, the sellers instructed the juvenile to meet them at a field behind 37 Liberty Street in Aberdeen.
As the buyer walked along a dirt path next to an abandoned building, two people came out from behind it. He turned to run and heard one of them yell, “got your b**** a**," according to charging documents filed in Harford County District Court.
He told police he heard gunshots as he ran, documents state. When he turned back to check on his pursuers, he saw they were running toward Chesapeake Court, the documents state.
The 15-year-old was not injured.
Aberdeen police, in turn, obtained a search warrant for 41 Liberty St. the following day in collaboration with the Harford County Sheriff’s Office’s special response team. Inside, they found the three individuals accused of the shooting.
In one of the bedrooms was a .40-caliber pistol, tucked away in a purse, and a .357-caliber revolver and a 9mm pistol were found under a shed in the back yard, police allege.
The revolver had five rounds in it and was unregistered, court documents state. The other two firearms were reported stolen from Cumberland and Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania.
Jeremy Taylor posted $7,500 bond and Justin Taylor posted $5,000 bond and were released, according to electronic court records. Those records do not list an attorney for either teen.
Mendoza was released on his own recognizance, records show. He also does not have an attorney listed.
Phone numbers could not be located for any of the three individuals involved.
The day of the purported shooting, the Aberdeen Police Department got an anonymous tip that the two Taylors had guns, according to charging documents. The tipster also said they had posted videos of shooting the guns and pointing them at dogs to social media, according to court documents. The informant also directed police to an Instagram account that had posted a video of “unidentifiable subjects shooting firearms in the dark," the documents state.
The tipster gave police images snapped from social media showing three hands pointing the guns in a dog’s face. That same dog was standing on a “distinct throw carpet," the documents state, both of which police found in their search of the Liberty Street address.
The Aberdeen Police Department has responded to multiple calls for shots fired in the Liberty Street area over the past two months, the documents note, including an incident Sunday night that could have been in retaliation to the alleged Feb. 20 ambush.
Shortly after 11:40 p.m. Sunday, police responded to the unit block of Liberty Street for a report of shots being fired into a home, according to a news release.
Nobody was injured in the shooting, and one resident counted four to five gunshots before seeking refuge in a closet, police said.
Investigators found evidence of gunshots in the home and are “looking into the possibility that this incident was in retaliation” to the Feb. 20 shooting, police said. .
Police encourage anyone with information about the incident to contact Detective Milton Alexander of the Aberdeen Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division at 410-272-2121.
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Police are also asking for anybody who lives in the Swan Meadows community or on Post Road or East Bel Air Avenue with outdoor cameras to check footage from 11:30 to 11:45 p.m. on Sunday for anything suspicious. Anybody with information can also call Alexander.