Annapolis, MD – A mass shooting that left three people dead and another three victims wounded at a large graduation party on Sunday night was preceded by a fight over parking.
Annapolis Police Chief Edward Jackson confirmed during a press conference on June 12 that 45-year-old Charles Robert Smith has been charged with three counts of second-degree murder and other offenses in connection with the June 11 mass shooting, The Washington Post reported.
Chief Jackson identified the deceased victims as 25-year-old Christian Marlon Segovia, 27-year-old Mario Antonio Mireles Ruiz, and 55-year-old Nicholas Mireles.
According to court documents, Nicholas Mireles was Mario Mireles’ father, The Washington Post reported.
The third deceased victim, Segovia, was Mario Mireles’ friend.
The series of events leading up to the deadly shooting began earlier in the night when “a large party” was held in the 1000-block of Paddington Place, resulting in “many cars parking on the street,” according to charging documents.
The City of Annapolis Parking Enforcement later confirmed an employee received a report that a car was blocking a driveway during the gathering, The Washington Post reported.
The driveway belonged to Smith.
Investigators said Mario Mireles went to Smith’s home to “talk about the parking,” at which point an argument erupted between him and someone at Smith’s house, The Washington Post reported.
Smith subsequently arrived at the residence and got into a confrontation with Mario Mireles, police said.
Investigators said the verbal argument turned into a physical altercation and that Smith pulled out a gun during the brawl, The Washington Post reported.
“He and Mario Mireles tussled over the gun,” the charging documents read. “During the tussle, Mr. Smith shot Mario Mireles. He also shot Christian Segovia.”
According to investigators, Smith “then stood over Mario Mireles and shot him several more times,” The Washington Post reported.
The gunfire drew the attention of the partygoers, who immediately ran over to try to assist the two wounded victims.
Meanwhile, Smith allegedly headed back inside, grabbed a rifle, and started shooting out the front window of his home in an attempt to hit the people who were trying to render aid to Segovia and Mario Mireles, The Washington Post reported.
He shot four more victims during the attack, including Nicholas Mireles.
55-yr-old Nicholas Mireles. His son, 27-yr-old Mario Mireles Ruiz. And 25-yr-old Christian Segovia. All killed in yesterday's #MassShooting. I spoke with two of Nicholas' eight children. One child saw it all happen. I could feel his pain. Their story is on tonight. @wbaltv11 pic.twitter.com/OhUpgBz3JN
— Tommie Clark (@TommieClarkWBAL) June 13, 2023
Danny Mireles, 12, said he was in a car when he saw the gunman fatally shoot his brother, Mario Mireles, WBAL reported.
“There was an argument because one of my brother’s friends parked in front of this dude’s house,” Danny Mireles told the news outlet. “The old lady came out arguing, so my brother came to help them out, and then the dude just comes outside with his gun and points it at my brother.”
The 12-year-old said that when his family ran over to help his brother and Segovia, the gunman came back outside and began shooting at them, WBAL reported.
“The dude shot my dad,” he said, breaking into tears. “He killed him.”
Nicholas Mireles was a father of eight, WBAL reported.
Annapolis police received a report of the mass shooting at approximately 8 p.m., WBFF reported.
They responded to the area and located three victims outside the house, all of whom were pronounced dead at the scene.
Smith came to the front door with his hands raised and surrendered as soon as police arrived, The Washington Post reported.
According to investigators, Smith claimed he only opened fire after the men “shot at his house.”
Investigators are still working to determine whether there was an actual exchange of gunfire, but witnesses said none of the victims was armed, The Washington Post reported.
Chief Jackson said there were approximately 150 to 200 people at the scene when he arrived there later on Sunday night.
Police found three more wounded victims inside a nearby residence.
All three of the surviving victims were rushed to local hospitals, WBFF reported.
At least one of them was airlifted to a Shock Trauma Unit.
Chief Jackson said in an update on Monday that all three survivors were listed in stable condition, The Washington Post reported.
The police chief did not confirm or deny the parking dispute was the motive of the shooting during the press conference, according to the news outlet.
“Something happened that caused the suspect, or now defendant, to use deadly force and to cause that kind of damage,” he said, according to The Washington Post. “We’re still very, very much trying to find out what was the motivation behind this.”
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is handling the ballistic evidence recovered at the scene, Chief Jackson said.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has been assisting with the crime scene processing, he added.
Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley said the gathering should have been a celebratory event, The Washington Post reported.
“ … A parent’s … proudest moment is their kid’s graduation from high school. And on a graduation day, on a block party, where you’re around family, where you should feel safe, this kind of violence happened,” Buckley said. “When you turn violent, and you have access to guns, this is the kind of thing that happens.”