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Saturday, November 12, 2005

Murder at 'Culture Club' not the first such killing in that neigborhood

(Posted November 12, 2005)
There have been other killings nearby connected to clubs with the same owner, but the Post has not reported fully on the problem.

The November 12 Post has a report on the funeral of LaKita Danielle Tolson, 19, who was gunned down November 5 in the parking lot of the Culture Club on Saint Barnabas Road (see map below). The report mentions the name of the owner, George Morcos, and his realtionship to the former New Hot Cafe nearby at 4225 Branch Avenue in the Marlow Heights Shopping Center, from which "he had been evicted because his use and occupancy permit did not allow a nightclub." The report also mentions comments by county officials.
"Weary of Violence, Friends Mourn Md. Teen"
Post, November 12 2005 (by Avis Thomas-Lesher and Hamil R. Harris.)
Despite the brief mention of Morcos and his nearby New Hot Cafe, the story does not mention the four 2002 murders involving young people who had just left the cafe, or the notorious history of the cafe, including the fact that r3 youths were arrested on gun and drug charges in the parking lot of that cafe between May 25 and August 15, 2002. There were several Post stories in 2002, suggesting that club-related violence, especially in the area of the Culture Club, is a continuing problem that county police and other officials have not been able to control.
"Killing Rekindles Doubts About Pr. George's Nightspot"
Post, December 31, 2002 (by Jamie Stockwell)

"Pr. George's Plans Curfew Crackdown"
Post, August 15, 2002 (by Jamie Stockwell)
". . . four recent homicide victims -- Ricky Lucas, 15, Ricky Johnson, 20, Jacuan Peterson, 17, and Tyrone Whitman, 23 -- had each just left the New Hot Cafe in the 4200 block of Branch Avenue in Temple Hills when they were slain. . . .

. . . on Aug. 2, Whitman was killed in what police said was a shooting to avenge Peterson's death. Wayne Wheeler, 23, was arrested and charged with his first-degree murder, police said. The other cases remain open."

Similar clubs have operated in recent years in the nearby 3600 block of Old Silver Hill Road, and there may be at least one such club operating in that block now.

George Morcos & Sons, LLP:

Mr. Morcos appears to be a CPA in Burke, Virginia. The partnership owns other properties in the vicinity of the Culture Club, and has been cited for code violations related to unlicensed vehicles and illegal signs.
November 19, 2003; January 21, 2004; May 12, 2004; June 9, 2004; July 28, 2004; August 11, 2004

2002 murder victims connected to a Morcos club

Tyrone Emanuel Whitman
, 23, of the 6500 block of Hil-Mar Drive, shot in the 6500 block of Hil-Mar Drive, August 2, 2002.
"Crime & Justice"
Post, August 3, 2002
Tyrone Emanuel Whitman, 23, of the 6500 block of Hil-Mar Drive, Forestville, was found shot to death in an apartment there, and an unidentified 21-year-old man was wounded. Wayne Wheeler, 24, of the 2700 block of Iverson Street, Temple Hills, was arrested and charged with first-degree murder in the shooting. Two other suspects are being sought. Wheeler is being held without bond.
Jacuan Marquestte Peterson, 17, of the 3800 block of 28th Avenue, shot in the 4200 block of 28th Avenue, across the street from the Marlow Heights Shopping Center, July 27, 2005.
"Metro in Brief"
Post, July 28, 2005
A 17-year-old was killed in a drive-by shooting in Temple Hills about 3:30 a.m. yesterday morning. Jacuan Marquette Peterson, who lived on the 3800 block of 28th Avenue in Temple Hills, was standing with several friends outside an apartment complex in the 4200 block of 28th Avenue when a Crown Victoria drove toward them and a person in the car fired several shots, according to police. Peterson was hit once in the upper body and was pronounced dead at the scene.
Ricky A. Johnson, 20, of the 1200 block of Howison Street, shot at Naylor Road and Suitland Parkway, May 26, 2002.
"Crime & Justice"
Post, May 30, 2002
A Southwest Washington man was fatally shot early Sunday and another person was injured while they sat in a car in Temple Hills, authorities in Prince George's County said yesterday.

Police said Ricky A. Johnson, 20, of the 1200 block of Howison Street, was shot as he waited at a red light at Naylor Road and Suitland Parkway. A white station wagon pulled up along the driver's side of Johnson's car, and a front seat passenger opened fire, police said.
Ricky D. Lucas, 15, of Forestville, shot May 25, 2002.
"Homicides of Youths Soaring in Pr. George's"
Post, May 26, 2002 (by Jamie Stockwell)
"Two teenagers became the latest victims of what Prince George's County police call an alarming wave of youth violence when someone opened fire on the car they were riding in early yesterday morning outside a Suitland cafe. Ricky D. Lucas, 15, of Forestville, was killed and a 17-year-old female was critically wounded as they left Marlow Heights Shopping Center in a car with other teenagers, police said. [More]"

Notes: Older stories no longer available on the Post website may be found through the county library website. A resident of the vicinity of the Culture Club contributed sabstantially to this report.

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