Early Saturday morning, an off-duty police officer in Baltimore shot and killed one Edel Cato Moreland, who had allegedly attempted to rob him. On getting up to investigate the noise in the 100 block of Homewood Road in Linthicum Heights, at around 1:30am on Saturday morning, the officer discovered Moreland, 32, brandishing what appeared to be a revolver, and shot in self-defense using his service weapon.
Moreland appears to have fled on foot until he collapsed, dying from what appeared to be multiple gunshot wounds. On examining the body, the revolver in question was found to be a realistic toy revolver painted all black, according to CBS Baltimore. If true, this would not be the first alleged incident of police weapons being used on unarmed targets.
The officer, while unnamed for his protection, is an 18-year veteran of the police force.
On examining the body, the revolver in question was found to be a realistic toy revolver painted all black.
Moreland’s family was shocked by the news. His older brother, Ulric Moreland, 35, said that the entire family was in a state of disbelief, that a robbery would have been out of character for his brother.
“He was a great person,” said Ulric. “He would give the shirt off his back. … I’ve never known him to do anything like that before.”
According to the Baltimore Sun, this was not Moreland’s first criminal act in Anne Arundel and Prince George’s counties. His previous offenses had mostly pertained to drug offenses, though in 2011 he had also pleaded guilty to second-degree assault.
The Moreland family attorney, Patrick Michael Smith, said that Moreland was “overcharged” in this assault case, and that the guilty please was not so much an admission of guilt as it was a deal to avoid another drug charge. Smith said that he had never known Moreland to engage in any violent activities like this one, and that he “would’ve never expected anything like this.”
Moreland’s body was taken to the chief medical examiner’s office in Baltimore for a full autopsy.