A deadly gunfight in the parking lot of a Concord nightspot might have been spurred by something as minor as one man bumping into another, authorities said last week in announcing the arrests of two jailed Delaware men.Charles "C Howe" Howie, 26, was identified by witnesses as the gunman who shot and killed unarmed Andre Pierre Frederick outside McKenzie Brew House, early Feb. 23, according to authorities and the arrest affidavit. Currently incarcerated at the Sussex Correctional Institution on probation violations stemming from a first-degree assault case in Delaware, he was charged with first-degree murder of Frederick as well as the attempted homicide of Arthur James Cooper.
Howie was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Richard Cappelli, June 26, then remanded to the county prison without bail.
Jeffrey "Roc" Morton, 23, was identified as the driver of a gray Nissan Altima, the alleged getaway car in which Howie was a passenger, the affidavits state. Currently classified as a detentioner at the Henry Young Correctional Institution who has a history of drug and assault offenses in Delaware, Morton was charged with criminal conspiracy to commit first-degree murder involving Frederick, as well as the attempted murder of Cooper.
Speaking at a press conference called by Delaware County District Attorney G. Michael Green, Pennsylvania State Police Capt. David Young categorized the early-morning shootings at the bar on Wilmington/West Chester Pike as an example of typical "inner-city violence making its way to the suburbs."
Green labeled the township as being "terrorized" by the gunfight. He praised state police for "dogged" efforts, Delaware authorities for their assistance and bar employees for their cooperation.
But the probe, Green repeatedly stressed, is ongoing.
"The entire sequence resulted in the brutal killing as many patrons are leaving," Green said. "Some who left may know something about what happened."
Green and Young asked anyone with information to call state police at 484-840-1000.
Investigators believe a minor altercation inside the bar - perhaps a bump construed as a gesture of disrespect between the victim and defendants, according to Young - spilled out into the parking lot, about 2:15 a.m.
Witnesses told state police Frederick, 30, of Wilmington, Del., argued with the defendants and that Howie pulled a weapon and shot Frederick three times.
"It was overkill on Mr. Howie's part," Green said, noting there was no evidence Frederick was armed.
Among crime-scene photographs on display at the press conference was one of the parking lot that morning. It depicted numerical markers commonly used by police to track spent shell casings, among other evidence.
The evidence count in the photo stopped at marker 17.
According to court documents, at least three firearms were involved in generating the discharged bullets and cartridges recovered at the scene.
Nicknames provided early in the investigation led to identification of the suspects, with the help of Wilmington Police Detective Scott Chaffin, according to the affidavits.
According to affidavits, Howie and Morton were subsequently identified in photo arrays