Update: Police recover weapon, vehicle in fatal shooting
Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 30, 2011
This morning, Salisbury Police recovered a handgun and a white car investigators believe were used in a fatal shooting Tuesday afternoon.
Police did not disclose where the items were found, and they are still searching for the suspect: Terrell Jamal Bowman, 20.
By Nathan Hardin
and Emily Ford
Three children are fatherless after police say a confrontation Tuesday afternoon led to the murder of a Salisbury man.
Authorities were searching Tuesday night for 20-year-old Terrell Jamal Bowman, formerly of 421 Mildred Ave. Investigators believe Bowman shot 32-year-old Dwante Patterson in the back during an argument at the Mildred Avenue home at about 5 p.m.
Wendy Lilly, who had three children with Patterson and lives at 421 Mildred Ave., said Patterson had come to pay a babysitter for taking care of his children.
Lilly said Patterson also wanted to talk with Bowman — an ex-boyfriend of Lilly who had come to the house Tuesday — about Bowman allegedly assaulting Patterson’s 16-year-old daughter last week.
Patterson told Bowman not to touch his children, Lilly said.
Bowman and Patterson began to argue, she said, and Bowman turned around and walked into a bedroom.
“Dwante said, ‘Don’t go in the bedroom and get nothing,’ ” said Lilly, who took her children and left the house. “Next thing you know, I heard shots.”
Patterson ran from the house, chased by Bowman, she said. The mother of six said her ex-boyfriend was still shooting at Patterson when he ran out of the house.
Lilly and Patterson’s son, 12-year-old Nautica Patterson, also saw the shooting.
Nautica sat on the front porch at a neighbor’s house Tuesday and watched as police pulled yellow crime scene tape around the front yard at the house where his father had been shot a short time earlier.
“He shot until the clip ran out,” Nautica said of Bowman. “He only hit my dad once. I think he hit that house over there, ’cause sparks came out.”
Police said Patterson fell, then got up and ran around the house toward Vance Avenue.
Authorities say Bowman got into a white 1990s Mazda sedan. A female driver and a man in the backseat had been waiting for him in the car, police said.
Lilly, two of her children and a neighbor found Patterson staggering in the street near the shooting scene. They picked him up and were headed to the hospital when they saw a police officer parked at Curt and Geri’s Dairy Bar on South Main Street and stopped.
Ten-year-old Passion Patterson stood in the Curt and Geri’s parking lot at 5:30 p.m., hugging a black puppy to his chest. Yellow crime scene tape cordoned off the area, and several police cars idled with lights flashing.
Passion also watched his father get shot, according to neighbors who gathered at Curt and Geri’s after learning of the shooting and the frantic van ride in search of help.
Jennifer Chambers opened her parka and wrapped it around the puppy and Passion, dressed only in a T-shirt and pants, to keep them warm. Soon after, husband David Chambers took the child back to Lilly.
The neighbor who drove the van carrying Lilly, Patterson and their two sons would not give her name to the Post.
“I’m shaking. Look at me,” the van driver told Jennifer Chambers. “There is blood all in my van.”
Her white van was parked outside the ice cream shop, clothes strewn on the asphalt. Police searched the van and collected evidence while she waited.
Jennifer Chambers said she, the van driver and Lilly have been friends for years.
“I can’t believe this,” Chambers said.
Police said Dwante Patterson was pronounced dead at the hospital about 6:15 p.m.
Authorities ask anyone with information about Bowman to call the Salisbury Police Department at 704-638-5333 or Crime Stoppers at 1-866-639-5245.