Parking Space Feud Inspires Shooting

Posted on April 8, 2015 by


An ongoing dispute over a parking space between two neighbors ended on 9 January 2015 when Dennis Padgett, age 34, shot both Troy R. Preston, age 40, and Robert Durham Thomas, age 47. Preston was shot in the head four times execution style, and Thomas was shot at close range in traffic on Ramblewood Street in Baltimore City.

These neighbors have had several arguments over the past year, and most of them have gotten heated. Violence erupted when Padgett and Thomas began fighting over a parking space shortly after 3:45 p.m. on 9 January 2015. Padgett took his children inside to keep them out of harm’s way and came back outside with his AR-15 assault rifle and 9mm hand gun.

Padgett shot Preston in the street, then chased Thomas through houses and near Mercy High School, where students were being dismissed. There is nothing more on how the students were affected by this crime. Padgett then shot Thomas in the middle of the street in traffic. One shot hit an oncoming car, hitting the passenger seat. It did not harm anyone. The woman was traumatized by the shots fired in her direction. Directly after, Padgett walked up to Thomas and fired shots, hitting him in the head and hitting the body with the pistol.

Afterwards, he ran back to his house.  When the police came with the SWAT team, he came out with his hands up and surrendered voluntarily. Padgett was arrested and taken by the police.  He was later interviewed by detectives.

In the meantime, the SWAT team searched his house. They found the rifle inside of the trashcan behind his house. They also recovered Padgett’s clothing covered in blood stains, muscle tissue, and bone fragments. Padgett is currently being held at Baltimore City Detention Center. He did not have an attorney in the online court records.

History teacher Paul Kochanasz suggested that speaking to his neighbors, collaborating with the condo organization, or even going to the police would have been a more appropriate way to go about the dispute.

“I am sure the people in the other apartments were shaken and scared about the incident,” Kochanasz said.

“I will never take my neighbor’s parking space ever again!” junior Connor Underkofler said.

“I’d watch out taking other people’s parking spaces. You never know what could happen if you take it from the wrong person,” sophmore Megan Majewski said.

“I know how frustrating it gets because I am a senior, and juniors take the front spots every morning because…they get to school too early. So I understand his frustration with something as simple as a parking spot. However, it is not acceptable to shoot them execution-style for it,” senior Emily Majewski said,

“I cannot even imagine how the people in the area must feel. I am sure everyone around the incident, especially the woman inside of the car that was shot at, was startled. Everyone there must be so scared. I would absolutely hate for something that extreme to happen in our neighborhood,” junior Hannah Sell said.

“I think this type of thing is ridiculous. I hate hearing about this type of thing going on in the world around us!” junior Jasmin Martinez said.

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