Humberto Sierra Camacho arrived at the 7-Eleven in Hyattsville just after 10 p.m. Sunday, according to police, and the 14-year-old boy who had called for a taxi climbed inside.
Now police have arrested and charged the 14-year-old with murder. In court documents, police said that somewhere between the 7-Eleven in the 3700 block of Hamilton Street and the apartment in the 7300 block of Riggs Road, the 14-year-old pulled out a knife, robbed Camacho of $40 to $60 and stabbed him multiple times in the right arm and chest.
The boy fled on foot, police said, and was found Monday. Authorities said in charging documents that he told investigators about the robbery and the stabbing.
The teen, who was charged as an adult, is being held at the county jail without bond.
The boy is the seventh juvenile so far in 2021 to be charged with murder in Prince George’s County — a sharp uptick from all of 2020, when six juveniles were arrested and charged in homicide cases for the entire year.
The increase in youth involvement is one trend county detectives are seeing so far in the first two months of the new year. Homicide rates are up overall. In January 2020, police investigated six murders, compared with the 16 people who were killed last month in Prince George’s.
Maj. Brian Reilly, who oversees the criminal investigations division within the police department, said that in about 80 percent of their homicide cases, the victim and suspect know each other. That was true in the fatal shooting of a 16-year-old on the night of Jan. 21, when police said the boy and two other teenagers argued over money before he was killed in a vacant apartment in Langley Park.
The teens later returned to the crime scene, according to police, and opened fire on an investigating officer.
Reilly said that their investigations so far have not revealed any connections between the different homicide cases, and they are not stemming from “some kind of war” between specific groups of people. The motivations for the crimes are consistent with what detectives usually see year over year — the homicides are just happening at a higher rate.
“That’s not a trend specific to Prince George’s County,” Reilly said. “It’s nationwide.”
But several other killings in the past month, including Camacho’s death Sunday, were what investigators would consider random.
John Woo Jang, a 66-year-old food mart employee, was shot and killed during a robbery in mid-January, police said. Four men who live in the same block in Waldorf were arrested and charged in his death, police said, and during the investigation detectives said they learned that the men targeted the business in Fort Washington but not Jang.
“We rarely see a commercial robbery that results in a murder of one of the employees,” Reilly said.
And 48-year-old Sharone Redding was killed the last weekend of January when someone fired into her home in Upper Marlboro, police said. Though detectives don’t believe the shooting was random, Reilly said Redding was probably not the intended target.
In response to the spate of killings so far this year, Reilly said the department has reallocated resources — putting additional officers “out on the streets” and utilizing overtime, detectives and undercover officers to “try to get an understanding of where the crime is taking place.”
“We’re not just trying to solve crimes,” Reilly said. “We are trying to prevent the crimes from actually happening in the first place.”