A security guard at a Southeast Washington shopping center shot and wounded two fleeing youths last night shortly after he attempted to break up what he said appeared to be a dice game on shopping center property, D.C. police reported.
The incident took place about 7:30 p.m. at a parking lot in the Marbury Plaza shopping center on Good Hope Road.
The security guard, identified as Orthelia Cooke, 25, an employee of the Admira Security Co., was charged with two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon, police said.
They said he told them he had dispersed players and onlookers in a dice game in the parking lot several times since being assigned two weeks ago to the shopping center.
Police said Cooke told them he had tried once last night to break up the game, then moved on. When he returned, they said, he found it still underway, and saw some persons run from the area as he approached.
They said Cooke told them he shouted an order to halt, then, as the youths continued running, fired two shots.
Police officials said that under D.C. regulations, an armed security guard, like a police officier, is permitted to use "deadly force" only when he judges that his life or that of others is in danger.
Stanley Jones, 21, of 2217 T Pl. SE and Ronald Thomas, 17, of 2216 U Pl. SE, were listed in fair condition at D.C. General Hospital last night after treatment for gunshot wounds, police said. They said Jones was hit in the buttocks and Thomas in the left leg.