The 21-year-old Morgan State University student who was fatally shot in Towson last week was killed in a marijuana robbery gone wrong, county police allege in charging documents.
Police say Kevin M. Sharp, 21, climbed into a car with Barry Ransom and two others after arranging to purchase marijuana. Once inside, Sharp pulled a gun and shot Ransom, an accounting major from Philadelphia, during a struggle, according to charging documents which cited information from others in the car.
Sharp was charged Friday with first-degree murder, after detectives served a search warrant on his home and found a backpack containing a large amount of marijuana and property with the names of the witnesses.
Sharp denied involvement in the case, saying he had been home all day, police said.
The shooting occurred on Oct. 25, at around 10:20 p.m., in the parking lot of The Shops at Kenilworth. Officers found a silver Honda with its engine running that was partially on the curb, and Ransom was in a wooded area yelling for help. He had been shot once in the torso and was pronounced dead at a hospital around 1:15 a.m., police said.
Detectives watched surveillance footage and determined there were multiple people in the Honda when the shooting took place. They found the two other passengers “nearby” — it is not clear how — and interviewed them. They are not identified in court papers.
Police say the passengers told them they were in the car and that they were meeting with an unknown man to sell him marijuana. The buyer got into the backseat with Ransom, they said, and pulled a gun and announced a robbery. After shooting Ransom, the gunman grabbed a backpack and a wallet and fled on foot.
Phone records showed that Ransom was in contact with a cell phone number just prior to the murder, which police say based on other investigations they know to be associated with Sharp, police said.
Location information confirmed Sharp’s phone had been in the area of the shooting at the time it occurred, and then moved to Sharp’s apartment a half-mile away in the 700 block of Camberley Circle, according to the charging documents.