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Family, friends mourn loss of two slain brothers

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Ten-year-old Parrish Richey lost her two older brothers Tuesday night when they were gunned down on a busy Northeast Baltimore thoroughfare.

"They were my favorites," she said yesterday. "They were there for me when I needed them. They were pretty cool, pretty nice."

Parrish and dozens of other friends and relatives gathered at her mother's house in Northeast Baltimore yesterday to mourn the loss of the two brothers, Earl Johnson, 20, and Maurice Johnson, 17. Friends and relatives recalled hard-working young men who were dedicated to their family.

"They were good boys," said their grandmother Roxie Lyle.

Police said yesterday that they had no clues and were continuing to investigate the deaths. The brothers were in the 2800 block of Harford Road, across the street from Clifton Park, when someone approached them and opened fire about 7:50 p.m.

Both were hit several times in their upper bodies. Earl Johnson died on the pavement. Maurice Johnson died later at Johns Hopkins Hospital. They are the city's 190th and 191st homicides of the year.

Family members said the brothers were probably getting pizza from a nearby carryout restaurant. Relatives said they had no idea why anyone would want to kill them.

Both had attended Lake Clifton/Eastern High School. Earl Johnson left the school in 11th grade and obtained a diploma from a correspondence course. He was a cook at a Towson pizza restaurant until it closed several weeks ago.

He was looking for another job and dreamed of becoming a forensic examiner for a police department. He leaves behind three young sons and a fiancee, family members said.

Maurice had been attending Lake Clifton until recently. Family members said he was going to start at Harbor City High School yesterday. He dreamed of moving to Las Vegas to perfect his rapping, family members said. Funeral plans were incomplete.

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