With the new year just two weeks old, Prince George's County detectives were being kept busy with five homicides, the most recent of them yesterday morning when a Capitol Heights man was shot during an apparent argument over a car repair bill.
Police said the latest victim, Henry Bell Ambers, 43, who lived at a boarding house at 624 Clovis Ave., became involved in a quarrel about 8:30 a.m. Ambers apparently had worked on another man's car on Wednesday and had been paid for the work, according to tenants who told police they heard two men yelling but did not see the other man.
In another death being investigated by homicide detectives, friends reported finding the body of Deloyce Peterson, 52, shortly before 11 p.m. Wednesday on the floor of his apartment bedroom at 5804 Annapolis Rd. in Bladensburg. Police said that Peterson had been stabbed several times. The body was taken to Baltimore for an autopsy.
Earlier Wednesday, Martin Alan Ford, 29, died at Washington Hospital Center from gunshot wounds he received Jan. 7. Ford, who lived in Greenbelt, was found slumped in the front seat of his Ford Bronco in Landover. He had been shot twice in the head. Police believe the killing was drug-related.
Police arrested James West, 27, of 3520 Silver Park Dr. in Suitland early Wednesday and charged him with first-degree murder in connection with the Jan. 2 shooting of Darryl Anthony Booker. Booker, 26, was shot as he got out of a car at 11 Cindy Lane in Capitol Heights. Police said the shots came from a crowd of men standing in a parking lot. Booker was the county's first homicide victim of 1988.
The second homicide victim of the year, Laura Renee Bantzel, 20, of Suitland, was found strangled and beaten last Friday evening.
The county had a record 95 homicides last year.