Autopsy Helps Lead Police To 'Additional, Significant Evidence' About Detective's Murder
BALTIMORE (WJZ/AP) -- There was a quick turnaround Monday in the Harlem Park neighborhood where Baltimore Police detective Sean Suiter was killed last week.
After initially clearing the area around where the 43-year-old was shot, which had been locked down since the shooting happened Wednesday afternoon, police started expanding the scene again shortly after noon, according to WJZ investigator Mike Hellgren.
The shooting happened on Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. in a vacant space between two row homes on Bennett Place. Suiter was there investigating a 2016 murder in the neighborhood with his partner, who has not been named.
On Sunday, the American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland issued a statement questioning the length and intensity of the police presence in the neighborhood.
At a Monday afternoon press conference, Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said officers returned to the crime scene after an autopsy on Suiter was completed Sunday, and did in fact find "additional, significant evidence."
"I indicated a few days ago that we would likely recover or discover additional evidence from the autopsy that would lead us to look at the crime scene differently than we have already looked at it," Davis said. "And in fact, that's exactly what happened."
The details of that evidence will not be disclosed publicly yet, he said, but he feels "very encouraged" that it will lead investigators to the killer. He declined to speak about potential motive.
Davis did say three shell casings recovered at the scene all match Suiter's department-issued weapon, but would say little about his partner.
"We are not identifying him. He is considered a witness in this case. And I am not going to comment on what role, or what observations, or what he did," he said.
The autopsy took so long to complete because Suiter was an organ donor, Davis said.
"We certainly wouldn't want to prevent Detective Suiter or his family from donating his organs so someone else may live just for the sake of carving or shaving a day or two off the length that we hold a crime scene."
Davis also said at the conference that two people were taken into custody Sunday night in connection with the case, but were questioned and released.
He thinks the killer is still in Baltimore, and that he is likely wounded.
It has been decades since the murder of an officer in Baltimore has gone this amount of time unsolved, without a named suspect.
The reward for information leading to a conviction in this case is $215,000.
Suiter's funeral arrangements have not yet been finalized, but a service will likely be held next week, according to Davis.
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