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‘We had children that were shot last night’: 13-year-old boy dead, 5 wounded in Baltimore County shooting

Baltimore County Police Chief Melissa Hyatt discusses a shooting at a Rosedale shopping center that left one dead and five others injured March 7, 2020.
Baltimore County Police Chief Melissa Hyatt discusses a shooting at a Rosedale shopping center that left one dead and five others injured March 7, 2020. (Phil Davis)

A 13-year-old boy was fatally shot and several others — four children and a 19-year-old man — were injured during a shooting at a Rosedale shopping center, Baltimore County police said Sunday.

Baltimore County Police Chief Melissa Hyatt said 13-year-old Rickie Forehand was pronounced dead at the scene as police found him and five other shooting victims just after midnight in the parking lot of the shopping center in the 6200 block of Kenwood Ave.

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“This level of violence is unacceptable. We had children that were shot last night,” Hyatt said. “And an adolescent lost his life for some senseless and unknown reason.”

In addition to Rickie, Hyatt said two 12-year-old boys, a 14-year-old boy, a 14-year-old girl and a 19-year-old man were injured in the shooting. All are expected to survive their injuries, Hyatt said. The five were released from the hospital Sunday evening, authorities said Monday.

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The shooting took place after a confrontation following an event at the Triple Threat Elite Dance and Fitness studio, Hyatt said.

A 13-year-old, Rickie Forehand, was fatally shot, and five others, including four children, were injured in a shooting around midnight on Saturday night outside the Triple Threat Elite Dance and Fitness Studio in the Kenwood Shopping Center in Rosedale. March 6, 2020
A 13-year-old, Rickie Forehand, was fatally shot, and five others, including four children, were injured in a shooting around midnight on Saturday night outside the Triple Threat Elite Dance and Fitness Studio in the Kenwood Shopping Center in Rosedale. March 6, 2020 (Amy Davis/Baltimore Sun)

“As the victims left the event, they were approached by several suspects on a parking lot,” Hyatt said. “An altercation ensued and then multiple shots were fired toward the group.”

She said the shooting appeared tied to the event and that there isn’t an active threat to the greater community. She did not elaborate on the nature of the event or the motive behind the shooting.

Rickie’s family declined to comment Sunday afternoon, saying they were still processing his death. Over a dozen people had gathered outside the family’s home in Loch Raven.

Baltimore City school officials said Rickie attended Vanguard Collegiate Middle School. They declined to comment further.

Jacobi Rockwell, 16, said he had been enjoying music and dancing with his friends Saturday night when he got a “weird” feeling that prompted him to leave early, around 9:30 p.m.

Hours later he found out there was a shooting, and wandered back to the shopping center and discovered Rickie had been killed. Until a Baltimore Sun reporter told him, the boy had no idea five others were shot — including two 12-year-olds.

“Twelve-year-olds?” Jacobi said, with his hands clasped to his face in shock. “Who shoots at 12-year-olds?”

Jacobi, who lives across the street from the shopping center, said the area is usually quiet. But he’s used to the violence creeping into the area. He said it’s not the first time he’s had acquaintances shot.

“I’m not scared because you get used to it,” Jacobi said. “It’s sad that a 13-year-old lost his life before he lives it.”

This was the first time Jacobi had been to a party at the dance studio, but his friends regularly attended. He said the studio regularly holds these “hype” parties that draw teenagers to hang out and dance.

The Kenwood Shopping Center, home to about 20 businesses, was desolate Sunday afternoon.

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A few cars rolled past the Goodwill, a hair salon and a dry cleaner, pausing briefly in front of Triple Threat Elite before driving off. The studio was closed.

A Baltimore County police cruiser parked between businesses and the large, empty lot.

Most of the shops were closed, but workers at those that remained open, like the laundromat, day care center and liquor store, said they didn’t know anything. The workers said the businesses were closed before midnight, and that they only heard about the shooting from listening to the news.

County Executive Johnny Olszewski Jr. called the shooting “shocking and horrifying” and encouraged residents with information to speak to the police.

“It has no place in our community and we refuse to allow it to be normalized,” Olszewski said.

Councilwoman Cathy Bevins said there are still several unanswered questions about the shooting but is confident police will get to the bottom of it.

“I know they will solve this crime," the chair of the council said. “It will not bring that child back, but hopefully it will bring some closure.”

Bevins, who represents the Kenwood Shopping Center area, said she can’t remember the last time a shooting this violent happened in the county.

“You wake up and hear about this in the city, but never in the county,” Bevins said. “It’s tragic, it’s sad. Anytime we have another life lost in Baltimore County is tragic.”

Baltimore County ended last year with 50 homicides — more than any other year on record.

The 50 homicides surpassed the previous high of 43 set in 1992, according to FBI data tracking violent crime since 1985. The 2019 homicides were an 85% increase over the prior year, when 27 people were killed in the county, according to police data.

Police ask anyone with information to call 410-307-2020.

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