Baltimore police have arrested and charged two men with shooting Sgt. Isaac Carrington outside his home last month, ending the manhunt for the masked gunmen behind a brazen daytime shooting of the off-duty officer.
One of the alleged gunmen, Karon Foster, 25, has twice been charged with murder and once acquitted; his second case is pending. Police Commissioner Michael Harrison said Foster had a hand in a string of recent shootings, armed robberies and carjackings across Northeast Baltimore.
The second man, Rashaud Nesmith, 18, has a record of gun charges as a juvenile.
Harrison announced their arrests Wednesday and commended those city detectives and federal agents who arrested the pair. Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby appeared beside him at the news conference and called the attack on Carrington “a senseless and heinous crime.”
“We must send a message to anyone who wishes to foster an atmosphere of fear within our neighborhoods that this sort of reckless violence will not be tolerated,” she said.
Harrison also said as a result of the investigation into Carrington’s shooting, the department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms were able to solve six cases — including a fatal triple shooting from July.
Lt. Col. John Herzog said the cases were being investigated simultaneously when they realized through tracing firearms that Carrington’s case tied into the others.
A 22-year veteran of the force, Carrington had stopped last month to chat with a neighbor across the street from his home in Northeast Baltimore when the gunmen pulled up, police said. The neighbor, Lemmie Brady III, recounted the next frightening moments in an interview with The Sun.
“Give me your s—!” one of the masked men demanded.
Brady threw his wallet and phone to the ground. He took off running.
Carrington, 43, ran in the other direction. At least one of the gunmen chased Carrington and shot him multiple times. Brady said the gunmen wore masks showing only their eyes.
Paramedics rushed Carrington to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center. He was in critical condition and by morning doctors had performed emergency surgery. Three days later, Harrison appeared in a short bedside video with the wounded sergeant.
“I love ya’ll,” Carrington says, slowly.
He lifts his hand and invokes the police code for “in service.”
“I’m 10-8,” he says. “I’ll be back.”
A popular sergeant in the department, Carrington had started his own line of clothing. He has since been released from the hospital. The police union announced it was accepting donations for his family. Meanwhile, a manhunt for his shooters went on for nearly six weeks.
In charging documents, detectives wrote that surveillance camera footage, cellphone records and fingerprints linked Foster and Nesmith to the robbery and attack on Carrington. The two men robbed the police sergeant of his gun and cellphone, detectives wrote.
Video cameras captured the shooters’ car speeding away from the scene. Four days later, officers found the Acura ditched behind the Orchard Ridge Community in East Baltimore, police said.
Meanwhile, detectives had arrested and charged Foster with murder in a June 12 shooting. Police are accusing him and 17-year-old Christopher Santiago of fatally shooting 29-year-old Taven Lowthe in the 4400 block of Franconia Drive. Police said they found the Acura keys on Foster.
They also found his fingerprints on the driver-side door, detectives wrote. They wrote that they also found Nesmith’s fingerprints inside the car.
They recovered the hard drive from the car and the GPS coordinates placed the Acura at the scene of Carrington’s shooting, police wrote. They wrote that the coordinates also placed the car outside Nesmith’s home shortly before the robbery.
Next, police traced the coordinates of Foster’s cellphone. They wrote that those coordinates matched the GPS data. Five days after the shooting, they searched Nesmith’s house and found a photo of Carrington’s gun on his cellphone, detectives wrote.
They also wrote that they found at the house a .40 caliber handgun that matched ballistics evidence from the scene of the robbery. The detectives wrote that they held back some of their evidence from the charging documents.
Foster is scheduled to make an initial appearance in Baltimore Circuit Court next week on the charges related to the June shooting.
Previously, Foster was tried and found not guilty of robbing and murdering a contractor working on a vacant house in November 2014.
Nesmith had faced gun charges from an incident in October 2017. He was 16 years old and the case was sent down to juvenile court. Details were not immediately available Wednesday.
The armed robbery of Carrington came amid a series of violent crimes against officers on- and off-duty. Weeks after Carrington was attacked, another officer narrowly escaped injury when someone opened fire on him.
“How out of control has Baltimore become when criminals walk up on a uniformed officer, in a marked patrol car, and fire shots at the officer,” said Sgt. Mike Mancuso, president of the police union, at the time.
In July, a new deputy police commissioner and his wife were robbed at gunpoint near Patterson Park. Police charged two teens with the armed robbery. That same month, two teenage boys and a girl attacked a crime lab technician downtown. Video cameras captured one boy stomping on the man’s head.
Also in July, Sgt. Billy Shiflett was shot and wounded during an exchange of gunfire with a man at a methadone clinic in North Baltimore. The gunman was killed.
The surge in gun violence has continued unabated in Baltimore. Carrington was among 578 people wounded by gunfire so far this year, a 23 percent increase in nonfatal shootings over this time last year, according to police statistics.
Harrison also announced Wednesday the arrest of two people responsible for a July 11 triple shooting. Diamante Teal, 22, and William Stewart, 20, were arrested and booked into the jail for shooting two women and 16-year-old Travis Chance in the 5600 block of The Alameda. Chance later died at the hospital.