YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – The suspect in a Youngstown shooting is in custody Wednesday night.
U.S. Marshals picked up 23-year-old Johnny R. Wallace without incident around 9 p.m. on Youngstown’s south side, police said. He is charged with shooting and killing 45-year-old Colin Brown at the Last Call Bar and Grill on South Avenue.
It’s the second shooting death in one day and the third in the city since the weekend.
While police won’t talk about possible motives in the case, detectives confirm the two were not strangers to one another.
“It’s our understanding that the victim and the suspect knew each other. Not so much maybe as friends, but at least acquaintances,” Capt. Brad Blackburn said.
People inside the bar told police they heard gunshots around 11:15 p.m. When officers got there, they found Brown’s body on the bathroom floor.
As Youngstown police continue to investigate this recent string of homicides in the city, 2017 is on tap to be deadlier than last year.
“There’s no rhyme or reason,” Blackburn said.
So far this year, there have been two dozen murders in the City of Youngstown, compared to only 19 for all of 2016.
“Sometimes when we get a couple in a row, it’s retaliation or they’re related but there’s no indication that these three that we had are related in any way or form,” Blackburn said.
The Youngstown Police Department’s team of detectives has been called out for homicides three of the last four nights. A man was shot outside of a gas station on Logan Avenue Tuesday morning and another man was fatally shot Saturday at the corner or Wirt Street and Belmont Avenue.
“Several times a year where we’ll get something very close in time and, you know, it gets overwhelming,” Blackburn said. “Then we go a month or two without a homicide.”
But this week has been a long one for Youngstown officers.
Blackburn said YPD is fortunate to be able to rotate its team of detectives, making sure one is assigned to a case to give it nonstop attention — sometimes for years.
“It wouldn’t be possible for one detective to handle these. They’re just so labor-intensive that we are fortunate that we can spread that out.”
As detectives continue to work through each of these cases, they continue to rely on the public for information.
“A lot of times on these cases, we’ll get calls and people don’t want to leave their names, which is fine, and we use, obviously, Crimestoppers. That’s been very helpful to us so if anybody has any information, we’ll gladly take it and try to solve these,” Blackburn said.