Two men have been charged in the July death of a 25-year-old St. Paul man gunned down in the city's Summit-University neighborhood.
Quincy R. Adams, 26, and Kemar A. Hawkins, 22, each face two counts of second-degree murder in connection with the fatal shooting of Bajuan D. Adams, who was struck by gunfire four times following a physical altercation on July 15. They were both charged recently in Ramsey County District Court.
Adams, who is of no relation to the victim, and Hawkins, of Woodbury, remain jailed in lieu of $1 million bail.
According to the criminal complaint, officers responded to the intersection of Concordia and Western Avenues around 5:45 p.m. on a report of shots fired. They found an off-duty nurse tending to a mortally wounded Bajuan Adams in the street as a large crowd gathered nearby. He could not be revived.
Investigators found 10 spent 9-millimeter shell casings near his body and five .40-caliber casings elsewhere. Witnesses reported seeing at least one suspect limp away and hop into a black BMW, which sped east on Interstate 94.
Minutes later, a vehicle matching that description arrived at Regions Hospital, where Quincy Adams was treated for a gunshot wound to the leg. Adams later told police that he'd been smoking marijuana with Bajuan Adams when a car pulled up and Bajuan got into a fight with one of the occupants, the complaint says.
Just after the shooting, a vehicle peeled away from the area and another squad chased it until it crashed 1½ miles to the west near the intersection of Marshall Avenue and N. Chatsworth Street.
The driver and front-seat passenger fled on foot, the complaint says, noting that one of the men lost his shoes the process.
Officers discovered an empty 9-millimeter gun case in the car's trunk and a Minnesota instruction permit in Hawkins' name.
A 21-year-old man covered in blood was taken from the back seat of the car to police headquarters for questioning, the complaint says. He was released after detectives determined that he was not a direct contributor to Bajuan Adams' death.
Although he was not the shooter, the man told authorities he didn't try to escape like the others because "he had caused the entire incident," charges say. (The Star Tribune generally does not name those who have not been charged with a crime.)
In an interview, the 21-year-old told investigators that he had confronted Bajuan Adams, a longtime friend, about using some "disrespectful" words toward him. He said he demanded to fight Bajuan and, upon seeing Quincy Adams, soon returned with two other men, including Hawkins, to back him up.
While they wrestled on the ground, the 21-year-old said he heard someone yell, "Don't reach — don't reach," the complaint says. Gunfire erupted from both sides over the wrestling men. Crossfire struck Bajuan Adams in the back, head, arm and ankle.
The 21-year-old rolled Bajuan off himself and ran to the car with Hawkins and another man, while Quincy Adams fled in search of medical aid, the complaint says. Hawkins also suffered a gunshot wound to the leg.
Once in custody, Adams and Hawkins offered conflicting versions of events to police, each claiming they returned fire only after the other man shot first. Neither man appears to have a violent criminal record in Minnesota.
Liz Sawyer • 612-673-4648