A report on the death of Baltimore Police homicide Det. Sean Suiter by an independent panel of policing experts provides a detailed timeline of the minutes surrounding his fatal shooting. The report’s authors concluded that Suiter inflicted the fatal gunshot himself. Here’s how their timeline is constructed:
Nov. 14, 2017
7:45 a.m. Det. Sean Suiter and his attorney, Jeremy Eldridge, exchanged text messages trying to arrange a meeting to discuss his testimony before a federal grand jury in two days’ time.
Time unlisted: Suiter began his shift. He was working not with his usual partner but with Det. David Bomenka, a junior homicide detective who he had specifically requested to be paired with that day.
Time unlisted: Suiter and Bomenka went to Bennett Place in the Harlem Park neighborhood ostensibly to follow up on a 2016 triple murder case and another case Bomenka had responsibility for. Suiter told Bomenka they were going to look for a woman named Mary, but the independent panel found no evidence anyone by that name or matching her description was previously connected to the homicide case.
Nov. 15, 2017
Before 10 a.m. Suiter and Bomenka again teamed up, beginning their shift in the morning.
4:01 p.m. Suiter received a call from Eldridge lasting nine seconds. Bomenka recalled Suiter saying he couldn't talk.
4:02 p.m. Suiter drove west on Bennett Place in an unmarked Nissan Altima. Investigators know the time because the moment was captured on a resident's video camera.
Time unlisted: Suiter and Bomenka drove along Schroeder Street when they spotted a suspicious person in an alley parallel to Bennett Place. They got out of the car but couldn't find anyone. Bomenka questioned whether they had actually seen anyone.
4:24 p.m. Suiter drove west a second time on Bennett Place and turned north on Schroeder Street. He then made a U-turn and the two detectives began heading back downtown to end their shift.
Time unlisted: Suiter told Bomenka he saw the suspicious person again and made another U-turn. He parked the car on Schroeder Street.
Time unlisted: The detectives got out the car and looked around between Bennett Place and Franklin Street but couldn't find anything. “Maybe we're just seeing things,” Bomenka said.
4:27 p.m. Elrdridge placed the first of two calls again trying to reach Suiter. Suiter didn't answer.
Time unlisted: Suiter and Bomenka walked along a pathway in the middle of the block, ending up a vacant lot by 959 Bennett Place.
4:32 p.m. Suiter told Bomenka to go to the corner of Bennett Place and Schroeder Street, near where their Nissan was parked.
4:36 p.m. Suiter ran toward the vacant lot and out of site of Bomenka and the video camera. Bomenka saw Suiter beginning to unholster his gun. Bomenka went to follow him. Suiter's radio transmitted a brief unintelligible sound before going dead.
Time unlisted: Bomenka heard Suiter shout “Stop! Stop! Stop! Police!” and heard gunshots. Bomenka gave slightly different accounts of what he saw next: Either Suiter collapsing to the ground or already on the ground. He saw gun smoke in the vacant lot.
Time unlisted: Bomenka drew his gun and began looking for someone who could have attacked Suiter. He crossed over Bennett Place and called 911 at 4:36:51 p.m.
Time unlisted: A resident at 959 Bennett Place heard the gunshots. He looked out the window and saw Bomenka.
4:37 p.m. A 911 operator activated a “Signal 13,” the code for an officer down.
4:39 p.m. A uniformed officer who arrived on the scene provided cover for Bomenka as he approached Suiter's body.
4:40 p.m. Another uniformed office arrived and saw Bomenka trying to save Suiter's life by performing chest compressions.
4:41 p.m. Officers load Suiter into a squad car to try to get him to Shock Trauma. They get into an accident on the way and Suiter was taken the last few blocks by ambulance.
4:52 p.m. Getting no response from Suiter, Eldridge sent him a text message: “Dude, what the [expletive] is going on.”