Police are investigating after a man’s body was found Thursday at an arabber stable in West Baltimore.
At about 5:45 p.m. officers were called to the rear of the 1100 block of N. Fremont Ave. where they found a man with a gunshot wound to his body. Officers pronounced him dead at the scene.
Filmmaker Matthew Holden Warren said he found the body around 5:30 p.m. Holden Warren, 41, lives in Fells Point and helps run the Arabber Preservation Society, which owns the stable.
Holden Warren had arrived at the stable to check on his pony, Wooly. From the corner of his eye, he said he saw what he thought was a man asleep, reclining atop a pile of wood in the frame of an old pigeon coop.
But on closer examination, he said, he realized that the man had been shot in the face. He said the man’s thumb was bent, and shell casings were scattered on the ground. He called the Baltimore Police Department.
“This is traumatizing,” said Holden Warren, holding a video camera he used to document the incident. It showed, he said, how the violence of Baltimore can infiltrate every part of life — even the arabber stable. “I’m traumatized.”
Holden Warren said he and others in his organization want to help the tradition of arabbing, which they think Baltimore needs. Horses are therapeutic. People need fresh vegetables.
“It’s a safe space,” he said of the stable.
The news a body had been found surprised no one sitting outside the stable.
The grim discovery was so common in Baltimore that it was “like saying it’s the ice cream truck outside,” said Jay Lyons, 21, a young arabber. “I got used to it.”
As to the idea of the stable being safe?
“There’s a safe place in the city?” said Wayne Ragland, 62. “I’d like to know where it’s at.”
Outside the stable’s chain link gate, a young man waited for police to bring out the body. His cousin had been missing. Was this him?
When officers wheeled out the corpse on a stretcher, covered in canvas, the man’s uncle ran toward them. Could he see the body?
“It might be my son.”
Officers loaded the body into a truck, unable to answer his questions. What kind of shoes was he wearing? Did he have a tattoo on his left arm?
Holden Warren had taken a photo of the body. The family asked to see it.
That’s him, they said. The young man crumpled to the ground, wailing.
Homicide detectives are investigating this incident. Police ask that anyone with information call 410-396-2100 or Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7Lockup. You can also text tips to 443-902-4824.