Theresa Morgan stood a street away from her old home in Freetown Village on Tuesday morning, waiting for police to confirm that her son had been killed.
Morgan moved to Baltimore recently with her son Breon Emerson Cager and her daughter, leaving behind her tight-knit African-American community in Pasadena.
"When you try to get your life together and get better for your children..." she said, her words trailing off.
Anne Arundel County police identified Cager, 27, as the man found dead in the 7800 block of Coutros Court. Police received a call around 7:40 a.m. and Morgan and her daughter, Shakita Cager, were there by 8:30 a.m.
Morgan said Cager's death comes just two months after his cousin, Javante Jaquan Parker, was shot to death in the community. Cager also was related to Ernest P. Green Jr., who was seriously injured in a shooting there in September.
No arrests have been made in either shooting.
Family members crowded around Morgan, hugging and crying just beyond crime scene tape. On the other side, police were taking photos and waiting for more information.
"There's no excuse for police and detectives to not give us any information," Morgan said.
Shakita said Freetown Village has changed since she and her brother grew up there, and police today don't know the community as they once did.
"Nothing has been done about it," she said. "I want justice done."
Lt. T.J. Smith, police spokesman, said the department plans to bring back a "police and community together officer" program, known as PACT in its heyday a decade ago.
Police Chief Tim Altomare told the caucus of African-American leaders Monday these officers will be in Freetown Village, and Meade Village and The Orchards in Severn.
"It was absolutely critical and beneficial," Smith said. "It's that consistent person to go to that you know is going to be available for those purposes. Things like that allow people to see the human side of police officers, and helps build and establish a level of trust."
Bishop Larry Lee Thomas, pastor of Empowering Believers Church in Glen Burnie, said building a relationship between the community and the police is a step in the right direction. He organized a community meeting with police after shootings last year.
He heard about the latest homicide Tuesday afternoon.
"I just took another deep breath and said we've got to keep on fighting," he said. "We still as a community have to be vigilant. Still lifting our voices to stop the violence."
Councilman Derek Fink, whose district includes Freetown, said he brought up the crime in the community during a meeting with Altomare when he was appointed late last year. He said the violence has frightened residents.
"It further illustrates the point that we need to increase our police department," he said. "This is great community and unfortunately we've had these murders."
Smith said police are investigating whether this homicide is related to the September shooting that put Green Jr. in a coma, or Parker's death in November. Smith said detectives haven't identified motives in either case.
Thomas said that he is concerned the same person might have been involved in all three shootings.
"We need to get this person off the street as quickly as we can," he said. "I'm hoping more people will be able to talk."
Clifton Martin, chief executive of the Housing Commission of Anne Arundel County, said Cager had been banned from Freetown Village. The commission operates the complex.
Cager had an extensive criminal record, with convictions over the last 10 years for assault, weapons and drugs, trespassing and other offenses.
Martin said because of a limited budget there is no security patrol, although security cameras are placed in common and public areas of Freetown Village.
"The Housing Commission is deeply concerned and saddened by it and wants to work with the police department to try to eradicate this in the future," Martin said. "Usually the families that live there and the residents get along very harmoniously."
Morgan said Breon may have gone to visit friends Monday night.
"He was a good child," she said.
Shakita said her brother was starting to get on the right path.
"He was struggling to get his life together. That was his goal for 2015," she said.
Help solve this crime
Police asked that anyone with information on the shooting call 410-222-4700.