D.C. Police have arrested at least two more adults in connection with last month’s drive-by shooting in Southeast that killed four people and left five others wounded.
Police arrested two adults on Thursday afternoon. A third suspect is still being sought.
The arrests come as the District Attorney’s General Office dropped all charges against 14-year-old Malik Carter, who was thought to be involved in the shooting.
All 41 charges – including four counts of murder – were dropped Thursday after authorities discovered a D.C. Police officer misidentified the teen as being the driver of the getaway van, sources tell WTOP.
Authorities sought a special order from D.C. Superior Court for permission to release the teenager’s name.
Malik Carter’s name had been published in the Washington Examiner several times throughout the paper’s coverage of the shooting. (Most news organizations do not publish the names of juveniles unless they are convicted or charged as an adult.)
Authorities feared the teenager’s life would be in danger if there was no public announcement about the charges being dropped, according to the special order.
The public disclosure of the respondent as being involved in this crime has publicly labeled him as being involved in a serious crime and potentially compromised his safety. The respondent could face retribution for his perceived role in this offense. In addition, without a full explanation that he was not the driver of the vehicle, there may be speculation that he is a witness for the government. Publicly announcing the dismissal of charges and the reason for the dismissal would clarify the public record as to the respondent’s involvement and help ensure the respondent’s safety.
Two men – 20-year-old Orlando Carter and 26-year-old Nathaniel Simms – have also been charged in the March 30 shooting, which killed four people and left five others wounded.
At the time, authorities said the 14-year-old was behind the wheel of the minivan. The minivan drove past the apartment building on South Capitol Street, and a gunman sprayed bullets from an AK-47 type weapon that was later thrown from the vehicle.