The National Day of Remembrance for Murder Victims Saturday fell on a particularly deadly weekend in Prince George’s County. Shootings in Prince George’s County, which began Friday night in Capitol Heights and ended Sunday in Marlow Heights, totaled six reported incidents and included four homicides and several non-fatal injuries:
• Friday just after 7 p.m., police found a male homicide victim in a building on the 6800 block of Walker Mill Road in Capitol Heights.
• Friday around 11:30 p.m., police officers found a woman with multiple gunshot wounds at the 10900 block of Hackberry Court. She was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital shortly afterward.
• Saturday around 9:50 p.m., a man was found shot in Laurel near Baltimore Avenue and Mulberry Street. The man, who was inside a vehicle when police arrived at the scene, was pronounced dead at a local hospital.
• Sunday at 11:12 a.m., a Prince George’s County police officer shot one of two carjacking suspects in Temple Hills who allegedly drew a gun. The man who was shot sustained non-critical injuries from the shooting at the parking lot of Skate Palace in the 3100 block of Branch Avenue.
• Sunday around 5:15 p.m., an exchange of gunfire outside the Branch Ave Metro station in Prince George’s County injured three people, including two minors. Another minor, who was involved in the incident but was not injured, was taken into custody. Metro police are still investigating what led to the dispute. They said the four individuals left a train together and entered the nearby parking lot before a fight broke out.
• Sunday just before 7 p.m., a shooting in a parking lot on St. Barnabas Road in Marlow Heights left a man with multiple gunshot wounds. Officers pronounced the man dead upon arriving at the scene.
These shootings brought Prince George’s County’s homicide count to 97, according to WTOP tracking, surpassing the county’s fatality count for all of 2020. In a statement two weeks ago, the Prince George’s County police department announced the county was amping up gun violence prevention measures, establishing a Gun Intelligence Unit to focus on gun offenses, arrests, tracking, and gathering evidence for gun-related cases.
Saturday night, a family grieved for Keanu Wright, a District Heights resident and expectant father. Wright had just received his HVAC licence when a friend shot him last summer in Prince George’s County.
Cycling Through Reopening Celebrations
The weekend of remembrance was also one of reopening celebrations, starting with the D.C. Bike Ride on Saturday, one of the District’s largest odes to two-wheelers. Folks enjoyed 20 miles of car-free peddling and volunteering under clear blue skies during the event, which this year raised $5,605 among 112 sponsored riders for charities, according to the D.C. Bike Ride website as of the time of this publication.
D.C.’s central library, Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library, finally had its day Saturday after a COVID-delayed reopeningrescheduled from last September. The reopening, which followed a three-year, $211 million building renovation, drew crowds on the sidewalk at the intersection of 9th and G streets Northwest. Residents enjoyed books sprawled over tables, author talks, film screenings, dance performances, children’s games, and a soundstage blasting go-go music.
The official reopening last year was marked by a less vibrant ceremony that included speeches from library officials, high schooler Toni Jackson (a member of the D.C. Teen Council, an initiative that pays one teen from each ward to advise on peer services in public libraries), and D.C. officials. Mayor Muriel Bowser then shared hopes for the legacy library amid “some difficult days” of violence after the murder of George Floyd and the “tremendous pain in our nation” disproportionately impacting Black folks.
The Other Virus
Another virus is making headlines in D.C. over the weekend. The norovirus has hit Georgetown University hard, with a rising number of students and staff plagued with a gastrointestinal issues that university officials confirmed Friday are due to norovirus. As of Friday, more than 90 students have reported symptoms associated with norovirus, resulting in 15 emergency room visits, some of which required IV rehydration. Georgetown started some hard-core cleaning on Saturday, reportedly sanitizing 46 student rooms, as well as high-touch common spaces on campus. Georgetown officials are asking anyone experiencing symptoms to quarantine for 48 hours or after symptoms stop.
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