Thursday, December 26, 2002

Shooter in 63rd homicide sought



By Tom O'Neill
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Gunshots shattered the Christmas Eve calm on a residential Northside street. Seconds later, police said, four teens ran from the scene.

Police arrived to find a man named Cortez Blassingame, who was later pronounced dead at University Hospital.

At 27, he became Cincinnati's 63rd homicide victim - equaling last year's 14-year high. Police did not release information about where Mr. Blassingame lived, or what he was doing at 10:45 p.m. Christmas Eve at Kentucky Avenue and Carlin Street.

Police say they are looking for four suspects. The first is described as a black male between 15 and 18 years old, 5 feet 3 inches tall and 120 pounds. He was wearing a dark gray zip-up hooded jacket, underwear with white and red pinstripes and baggy blue jeans, in addition to a white T-shirt and a dark-colored T-shirt.

The second suspect is also a black male between 15 and 18 years old, 5 feet 8 inches to 5 feet 10 inches tall. He was wearing dark clothing and a hat.

Police say they are also seeking two other suspects, both black males between the ages of 15 and 18 years old. All four young men were last seen running through the rear yard at 1956 Kentucky Ave.

Tuesday's killing is the third for the year in Northside.

Anyone with information about the killing is asked to call the Criminal Investigations Section at 352-3542 or Crime Stoppers at 352-3040. Callers can remain anonymous and may receive compensation for their information.

E-mail toneill@enquirer.com




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