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January 11, 2011

Arrest made in July shooting of Marine

Baltimore police announced this morning that they arrested an 18-year-old man in the July slaying of a U.S. Marine who was shot during an altercation inside a downtown Hookah bar. The Marine, 26-year-old Sgt. Chase Love, was from New Orleans and was celebrating with friends before his redeployment to Afghanistan.

The suspect is identified as Ronald Johnson (left), of the 2100 block of West Lexington St.

Police said in charging documents that Chase and Johnson got into an argument inside Queen's Hookah in the 200 block of East Baltimore St. in the early morning hours of July 2. The court document filed by Detective Mark Veney of the homicide unit says that Chase shoved Johnson and that Johnson shot him several times with a small .25 caliber semi-automatic handgun.

Love stumbled out of the lounge and collapsed on the sidewalk in front of Manasa Hallmark store.

The Marine lived with his wife and two stepchildren in North Carolina. He had served in Iraq and Afghanistan. Several active and and former servicemen had been killed in the months prior to Love's death.

Johnson has been charged with first-degree murder, first and second degree assault and several handgun counts.

Posted by Peter Hermann at 8:54 AM | | Comments (0)
Categories: Courts and the justice system, Downtown

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About Peter Hermann
Peter Hermann started covering news for The Baltimore Sun in 1990, first in Anne Arundel County and, starting in 1994, reporting on the Baltimore Police Department. In 2001, he was assigned to Jerusalem as the Baltimore Sun's Middle East correspondent. He returned in 2005 as an assistant city editor overseeing crime coverage. In 2008, Peter returned to the beat as a daily reporter and blogger. A recent BBC report featured him in a segment on the harsh realities of covering crime in Baltimore.

Coverage will focus on crime trends, problems in neighborhoods in the city and elsewhere, profiles of victims and police officers and try to offer readers a fresh perspective on one of the most vexing issues facing Baltimore and its future.

Contributing to this blog is Justin Fenton, who joined The Sun in 2005 and has covered the Baltimore City Police Department and the criminal justice system since 2008. His work includes an investigation into Cal Ripken Jr.’s minor league baseball stadium deal with his hometown of Aberdeen, a three-part series chronicling a ruthless con woman, coverage of the killing of five Amish children at a schoolhouse in Nickel Mines, Pa., and a job swap with a British crime reporter to explore differences in crime-fighting. A special report looking into how city police handle rape cases led to sweeping reforms that changed the way sexual assaults are investigated in Baltimore. He was recognized as the best reporter in Baltimore by the City Paper in 2010 and by Baltimore Magazine in 2011.

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