Crime & Safety Report

| April 11, 2014

Reports courtesy of Mike Joyner, Public Information Officer, City of Fort Wayne Police Department

Smoke House Tobacco Outlet owner murdered in store

FORT WAYNE—At approximately 8:30 a.m., April 7, Fort Wayne Police responded to the report of a man down inside The Smoke House Tobacco Outlet located at 2217 S. Lafayette Street. Officers arrived to find an adult male down inside the business. He was transported to a local hospital where he was determined to be in critical condition and later died of gunshot wounds.

This incident appears to be as a result of an attempted robbery of the victim, later identified as 44-year-old Antonio Lopez Nino, the owner of the establishment.

Nino’s death is the third homicide of the year in the Allen County area.

Family, friends and loyal customers held a vigil outside the store in the wake of the murder.

A surveillance camera captured several images of the suspect and Fort Wayne police are asking the media assistance in releasing these images to the public in hopes of being able to identity this person of interest.

Closeup of the suspect in the Smoke House homicide.

Closeup of the suspect in the Smoke House homicide.

Full length of the suspect in the Smoke House homicide.

Full length of the suspect in the Smoke House homicide.

The suspect is a male black, who appears to be right handed, wearing a two toned outer jacket that is gray over the shoulders of his jacket that run the length of the sleeves. The jackets sleeves appear to be gray in color on the top half with black covering the bottom half of the sleeves.

Note that the jacket goes from gray on the shoulders to black midway down the body of the jacket.  The suspect appears to be wearing a red ball cap with some type of emblem on the face of the ball cap.

Anyone with information that can lead to the identification of this person of interest is asked to contact Crime Stoppers at (260) 436-STOP (436-7867) or the Fort Wayne Detective Bureau at (260) 427-1201.

Gang unit arrests attempted murder suspect

FORT WAYNE—At approximately 7:55 p.m., April 10, detectives of the Fort Wayne Gang and Violent Crimes Unit and the Vice & Narcotics Division were conducting surveillance on 4610 Gaywood Drive in reference to Quinn James.  James was wanted for attempted murder and aggravated battery stemming from a shooting at Standish Drive and Fairfax Avenue on July 14, 2012.  James was observed entering the house at which time detectives surrounded the house and called him outside at which time he was taken into custody.

A search warrant was obtained for the residence at which time detectives located:
• Two loaded rifles (SKS, AR-15) and a 12 gauge shotgun
• Approximately six ounces of marijuana;
• 2.2 grams of cocaine;
• Three ecstasy tablets, and
• Various items of paraphernalia.

The Unit was also assisted by the FBI Safe Streets Task Force and the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, Tobacco and Explosives (BATFE).  The case is ongoing and further charges are pending.

Man killed in house altercation

FORT WAYNE—At approximately 5:14 p.m., April 5 officers with the Fort Wayne Police Department responded to a report of a disturbance at a home in the 2000 block of Gladstone Drive. Upon arrival, officers located an adult male who was unconscious and unresponsive. Medics took the victim, later identified as 45-year-old Darrell King, to a local hospital in critical condition, where he was later pronounced deceased by hospital staff.
The preliminary investigation so far has revealed a fight took place between King and another adult male. At this time the nature of the fight is unclear, as is the role of the fight in causing King’s death. Police detained and questioned a person of interest. This person has not been charged as of yet, and it is too early to tell if charges will be filed or not.
Detectives are working to establish a relationship between those involved and the deceased, what led up to the altercation, any motives, etc. At these early stages, gang activity is not suspected. Other witnesses were transported to the police station and interviewed by detectives.
Crime Scene units processed the scene, as detectives and officers interviewed anyone who may have been present or has any information.

This incident remains under investigation by the City of Fort Wayne Police Department, the Allen County Coroner’s Office and the Allen County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.
Assisting agencies included the City of Fort Wayne Fire Department and Three Rivers Ambulance Authority.

Home repair fraud crime prevention tips

FORT WAYNE—As you emerge from your home this spring, you may notice the structure has suffered some damage from winter. Unfortunately, this is also the season for home repair fraud.

It is estimated that Americans will spend approximately $133.9 billion on contracted home improvement projects and do-it-yourself repairs this year. The home repair industry is thriving. This condition makes it lucrative for con artists, and each year Americans lose millions of dollars on fraudulent repairs.

But, homeowners can protect themselves from becoming victims of home repair frauds by educating themselves on their rights as consumers.

Con artists carry out home repair scams in many different ways. Below is an example of a common home repair scam and tips for hiring a contractor:

The quick repair made with materials left over from another job.

The con artist approaches a homeowner with an offer to repair the driveway or roof with materials left over from another job in the neighborhood. Many of these fraudulent workers appear after heavy rains, winds, snow or other disasters that wreck lawns, roads and driveways. What seems like a good deal for the homeowner turns into a nightmare when it becomes apparent that the con artist used inferior materials, made faulty repairs or did not even do the job at all.

When considering potential contractors, homeowners should be wary of those who solicit door-to-door, just happen to have leftover materials from another job, accept only cash payments or ask for the entire payment up front.

Lack of references or suggestions to use “their people.”

If they refuse to provide references, or suggest or insist that they borrow from a lender the contractor knows, those are red flags and should indicate to the homeowner that they are finished talking with this contractor.

Demand and read written contract.

Homeowners should ask for a written contract that fully outlines the details of the job, including product and materials specifications, time lines, warranties and payment schedules. Never sign a contract before reading it carefully or if it contains blank spaces that can be filled in by someone later.

If ever in doubt about the legitimacy of person or company contact the Better Business Bureau and inquire into any history that they might have on the individual or company.

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Category: Crime & Safety, Local

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Frost Illustrated is Fort Wayne's oldest weekly newspaper. Your Independent Voice in the Community, featuring news & views of African Americans since 1968.

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