Olney man arrested in connection with Aspen Hill shooting Tuesday -- Gazette.Net


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This story was updated at 5 p.m. on Dec. 19, 2012.

Montgomery County police arrested an Olney man Wednesday for the shooting of a 22-year-old man in an Aspen Hill park Tuesday afternoon.

Damacrius Damone Grays, 19, of the 4400 block of Fishermans Court in Olney, was arrested at 10 a.m. Wednesday and charged with attempted first-degree murder, said Capt. Paul Starks, a Montgomery County police spokesman. The shooting took place after a disagreement between Grays and the 22-year-old man, Starks said.

Both county and park police officers responded North Gate Park, at Connecticut Avenue and Grand Pre Road, at 4:45 p.m. Tuesday where they found the man suffering from a single gunshot in his eye, said Capt. John A. Damskey, who commands the Wheaton police district. Damskey said police were fairly certain they knew Grays was involved shortly after responding to the scene, though he was not brought in for questioning right away.

“When we first arrived on the scene the victim was conscious and talking to officers,” Damskey said. “We were able to follow leads from evidence we recovered at the scene to identify the victim and the suspect almost right away. We’ve come this far very, very quickly thanks a lot to the hard work from the Major Crimes Division and specifically our detectives.”

Detectives also believe that Grays and the man knew each other, indicating the shooting was not a random crime, Damskey said. Several witnesses were also in the park when the shooting occurred, police said.

The man was immediately taken to a local hospital where he remains in “grave condition” Wednesday afternoon. Police have not released his name yet because they are having difficulty reaching members of his extended family. Because of the serious nature of the crime and the man’s injuries, county police took over the investigation, said Lt. Bill Kellogg, a spokesman for the Maryland-National Capital Park Police’s Montgomery County Division.

Tuesday’s incident marks the fifth shooting in Montgomery County since Dec. 3.

Back-to-back shootings have some members of the community concerned, including Carol Petzold, a former Maryland delegate and a longtime member of the nearby Aspen Hill Civic Association, which represents neighborhood interests on the other side of Georgia Avenue.

“We are concerned whenever repeated things like that happen and this was a daylight shooting,” Petzold said. “It’s something for us to be concerned about, but I have a lot of faith in our [Wheaton] district patrols and I’m glad that they have made an arrest in the second shooting, I just hope that it can be contained and there won’t be any more.”

Police were still questioning Grays on Wednesday evening and he had not been taken to the Montgomery County Detention Center.

jarias@gazette.net