Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Baltimore police are seeking the killer of a disabled man

From WBAL-TV in Baltimore, Maryland:

Police are trying to find the person who killed a disabled man who was found in a bathroom at Leakin Park.

Lemuel Wallace, 37, was found Wednesday by officers who were patrolling the area near the 4500 block of Franklintown Road.

Investigators said they believe that Wallace knew the person responsible for his slaying.

Residents said that the Wallace was well liked in the Pikesville neighborhood where he lived. Wallace was known to take walks in the area.

Officers are combing the neighborhood with his photo to see if anyone caught a glimpse of whoever convinced Wallace to go miles away with them to Gwynns Falls Park -- known to many as Leakin Park.

"I saw him. I don't think he caused any harm. He was right over at that house over there. I saw a dark-skinned male that looked like that on the picture," Pikesville resident Devin Cheese said.

Wallace was disabled and lived in a group home in the 4500 block of Maryknoll Road.
Cheese said that he saw Wallace a few days ago. The man claims that Wallace came out of the home and got into an adult day care van.

Police found Wallace's body Wednesday inside the park bathroom near the Gwynss Falls Trail. He had been shot multiple times.

"It doesn't appear to be a robbery and it doesn't appear there was a struggle. We believe because of his disabilities he was manipulated into going with this person," Detective Nicole Monroe said.

The group that runs the home where Wallace lived said that he was a fairly independent person. Wallace was known to have lots of friends and that he had just moved to the home eight months ago.

Investigators said that Wallace must have trusted his killer or considered the person a friend.

"That's why we believe whoever murdered Wallace manipulated him and tricked him into going with him and took his life," Monroe said.

They also think it was someone who has been seen with Wallace.

"We do believe there are people in the neighborhood who saw Wallace with the suspect. We want phone calls. Let the detectives sift through the information," Monroe said.