A fatal shooting in Northeast DC on Sept. 28 was part of an ongoing dispute between rivaling neighborhood men. A dispute that was part of another homicide, just one month prior.
That’s according to MPD Detective Dwayne Partman, who testified Wednesday at a preliminary hearing for Jekwan Smith.
Smith, 20, is suspected of being part of a group of young men that shot at Isaiah Sheffield as he rode his bike past them in the 1100 block of 21st Street NE.
Partman said Sheffield was struck by that gunfire, fell from his bike, reached for his own gun, and returned fire. Two witnesses saw the attack from different vantage points. One of the two witnesses relied upon in the affidavit reported that:
as [Sheffield] was riding by, four black males from the group began firing multiple gunshots at him. [The witness] reported that [Sheffield] did nothing to provoke the gunfire. [The witness] further related that [Sheffield] was struck by gunfire, which caused him to fall off of his bicycle and fall to the ground. After being fired upon, [Sheffield] produced a gun and began firing in the direction of the group of males who were shooting at him. [The witness] reported that it saw [Sheffield] stumble and collapse behind some vehicles parked on the east side of` the street.
According to charging documents, when officers responded to the scene around 1:45 a.m., they found Sheffield suffering from an apparent gunshot wound. He was transported to a local hospital and was immediately admitted into surgery. Sheffield died shortly after 9 a.m. The autopsy report states Sheffield’s cause of death was a gunshot wound to the back.
Partman said homicide detectives believe that Smith associated with the 21st and I St. NE neighborhood where his grandmother lives. Smith’s Facebook profile includes photos of Smith with the words “21st for life” etched over them and Smith has a tattoo of the words, Partman said.
Sheffield was from the 18th and E St. NE neighborhood, Partman said. About a month before Sheffield was fatally shot, someone else from the 18th and E St. NE neighborhood was fatally shot, Partman said, adding that a person is in custody for that shooting and that that person was from the 21st and I St. NE neighborhood.
The defendant in that other case knows Smith, Partman said. He also said that there is no information that Sheffield was “participating in that feud.”
Smith was ordered held on the charge of first-degree murder today by Judge Ronna Beck, who ruled that there was enough evidence to find that there was probable cause to believe that Smith committed the offense.
Smith’s attorney had argued that the information provided by the only witness who identified Smith was unreliable. In addition to being inconsistant, the witness provided a false name to law enforcement because it knew that there was a warrant out for its arrest. The witness also testified under a false name to the Grand Jury.