Baltimore, MD – Police made an arrest in the murder of a Baltimore driver who confronted squeegee workers with a bat after dashcam video identified the gunman and showed the victim was walking back to his vehicle when he was attacked.
Baltimore police said that 48-year-old Timothy Reynolds was driving through the intersection of Light and East Conway streets at about 4:30 p.m. on July 7 when a man with a squeegee approached his vehicle, WTTG reported.
Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison said a confrontation erupted between the two and then Reynolds drove through the intersection and parked his vehicle, The Washington Post reported.
Commissioner Harrison said Reynolds, a married father of three children, got out of his car with a baseball bat and confronted the squeegee man.
“He swung the bat at one or more of those squeegee workers,” the commissioner initially told reporters at a press briefing after the incident.
“In return, one of the squeegee workers pulled out a gun and fired, striking this male victim,” he said.
But the dashcam video filmed by a witness who was at the intersection when the scene erupted showed Reynolds was walking away from the intersection when three squeegee workers followed him and attacked, The Baltimore Sun reported.
Another car briefly obstructed the view as the squeegee boys surrounded Reynolds and then Reynolds can be seen chasing the boys with his bat raised, according to The Baltimore Banner, the first publication to report the existence of the dashcam video.
Dashcam video showed that at the same time Reynolds went to swing his bat at one of the squeegee workers, another one threw a rock at the man’s head.
The rock hit Reynolds in the head and bounced off, The Baltimore Sun reported.
A police report said Reynolds “stumbles after being hit in the head with the rock and appears to become disoriented,” The Baltimore Banner reported.
That was when Reynolds turned around and a third squeegee worker began shooting at him.
Video showed that Reynolds began to fall to the ground after the first shot hit him, but the gunman continued shooting as he walked away and shot him four more times, The Baltimore Sun reported.
Commissioner Harrison said police don’t know whether Reynolds actually struck anyone with his bat, The Washington Post reported.
Reynolds was transported to a hospital with multiple gunshot wounds and was pronounced dead.
Police said the group of squeegee workers fled the scene, The Washington Post reported.
Officer arrested a 15-year-old suspect at about 6:35 a.m. on Thursday in Essex, CBS News reported.
Detectives interviewed the teen and his father on July 14 before he was taken into custody and booked into the Baltimore City intake facility.
The 15 year old is charged as an adult with the first-degree murder of Reynolds, CBS News reported.
Commissioner Harrison called the arrest “another sad reminder that guns are too easily accessible to our young people.”
“We have seen time and time again the willingness of individuals to illegally carry and use these weapons,” the police commissioner said. “And we know they make the decision to do so the moment they leave the house, not just when they pull the trigger.”
Commissioner Harrison said it was the second incident involving squeegee workers at that same intersection on the same day.
Hours before Reynolds was shot, Baltimore police confiscated a pellet gun from a squeegee worker after an altercation ensued when employees of the Mayor’s Office of African American Male Engagement were attempting to do outreach in the area, The Baltimore Sun reported.
Across town the same day, another group of squeegee workers took a woman’s cell phone from here and used a financial app to steal more than $2,000, WBFF reported.
The presence of squeegee workers on the streets of Baltimore has been a flashpoint in the community for years, The Baltimore Sun reported.
There have been numerous confrontations between drivers and the young men bearing spray bottles and squeegees who frequently accost driver’s vehicles and wash their windshields without permission and then demand payment to let them proceed.
City officials have refused to intervene and claim the presence of the squeegee workers is symptomatic of the city’s poverty problem and should be addressed with social services, The Baltimore Sun reported.
Open Baltimore Data showed there had been 69 calls for “squeegee disturbances” in the past 18 months at the intersection where Reynolds was killed.
Complaints about squeegee workers are the most common 911 calls from that intersection other than traffic crashes, The Baltimore Sun reported.