- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
The Charles County Sheriff’s Office and Charles County Crime Solvers are offering a combined $6,000 reward for additional information leading to an arrest or indictment in the shooting death of a La Plata man three months ago.
Martin Hawkins Jr., 32, was walking home from a friend’s house the night of April 18 when he was shot to death in the 200 block of Kent Avenue in La Plata.
Two days later detectives went door to door in the Phoenix Run neighborhood where Hawkins lived, passing out nearly 200 fliers with details about the shooting and a reward for anonymous tips leading to an arrest.
The department has fielded a number of calls from local residents, but investigators need more information, the sheriff’s office announced this week.
Specifically, detectives need to hear from people who either witnessed or have direct knowledge of the shooting and those involved, sheriff’s office spokeswoman Diane Richardson said.
In an attempt to solicit more tips from the community, the department is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest or indictment and Crime Solvers is chipping in another $1,000.
Anyone with information can call detective J. Elliot at 301-609-6515. Those wishing to remain anonymous may call Crime Solvers at 866-411-TIPS, text CHARLES plus their tip to CRIMES or go to www.ccso.us to submit a tip online.
The lack of an arrest has left Hawkins’ family awaiting justice and answers to unsolved questions.
A month after the shooting, Nicole Hawkins of Bowie said her brother had suffered through an abused and neglected childhood and was trying to turn his life of petty crime and fights around at the time he was killed, attending church and keeping a quick temper, the product of a disability that kept him from working regularly, in check.
Neighborhood rumors relayed to Nicole Hawkins indicated her brother’s shooter might have been a man with whom he had previously quarreled.
Del. C.T. Wilson (D-Charles), a former prosecutor, heard the same rumors and in May called for the community to step up and help catch Martin Hawkins’ killer.
“There are plenty of individuals in our community that know exactly what happened, who know the altercations he may have had,” Wilson said. “I’m not questioning the efforts of our law enforcement because they can only do so much. It’s our job to step up and fill that void. There are people in the community who know exactly why he was shot and who shot him.
“Snitching is not when you protect your community. ... When you know somebody was murdered in your community and you have evidence and you know you can give it anonymously and you don’t, you’re just being a coward. ... Some people may be fearful, but again, if you don’t stand up for your community and the lives of your citizens, then who will? How can you expect it to ever be better? I hope somebody steps up.”