By Mark F. Gray, AFRO Staff Writer, [email protected]

It was an extraordinarily busy week for the justice system in Prince George’s County. 

Two cases now have suspects in custody, while another investigation continues after an apparent homicide in Mount Rainier last weekend.  In addition, a jury convicted a man who had been accused of killing a D.C. resident during an illegal marijuana transaction almost two years ago.

Investigation Begins in Mt. Rainier 

Detectives from the Prince George’s County Police Homicide Unit detectives are investigating the death of 20-year-old Hosheyah Smith of Glenn Dale which apparently took place on July 10.

Benson Thorne Jr., 27, was found guilty July 11 of second-degree murder and use of a handgun in the commission of a crime of violence after allegedly killing 24-year-old Troy Foster (pictured) in 2017. (Courtesy Photo)

 PGPD Detectives responded to a call from an area hospital for a walk-in shooting victim who was later identified as Smith and their preliminary investigation concluded Smith had been shot near the intersection of 37th and Shepherd streets in Mount Rainier.

Smith was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Detectives are still working to establish a motive in this case.

Suspect Arrested in Multiple Auto Thefts 

Terry Johnson, 34, a transient with no fixed address, was arrested by Prince George’s County Police officers as a suspect linked to at least 18 thefts from automobiles in a 24-hour period. He has been charged with multiple thefts, property damage and other related offenses. 

County patrol officers quickly responded to the scene, when a  citizen called 911 to report a theft from a vehicle on Berrywood Lane on July 11, around 4:30 a.m.  During the neighborhood search, the officers spotted a man who matched the description of the suspect wanted  in connection with a series of recent car thefts in that area. 

Johnson was apprehended after a brief foot chase. He had property from several theft victims in his pockets and currently is in the custody of the Department of Corrections on a no bond status.

Capitol Heights Murder Suspect in Custody 

After a three month investigation, Homicide Unit detectives have arrested a suspect in connection with a homicide in Capitol Heights in April.   Rendell Markeith Johnson, 25, of the 1400 block of Key Parkway in Frederick is believed to have fatally shot 24-year-old Trevor Frazier of Frederick and 26-year-old Raymond Giles of Frederick.

According to police reports patrol officers were called to the 5100 block of Fable Street on April 7th just after midnight for a shooting. They discovered Frazier’s body inside a vehicle with gunshot wounds to the body. Giles was also discovered outside the car lying in the roadway also suffering from gunshot wounds. Frazier was pronounced dead on the scene. Giles was taken to the hospital where he died a short time later.  

The preliminary investigation reveals the suspect and victims were known to each other and the motive for the apparent double homicides stems from a dispute between Johnson and Frazier.

Johnson is charged with first and second degree murder and related charges. He is in custody in Washington, D.C. on a no bond status and is awaiting extradition to Prince George’s County. 

Murder Suspect Found Guilty 

Benson Thorne Jr., 27, was found guilty July 11 of second-degree murder and use of a handgun in the commission of a crime of violence.  Prosecutors were able to prove Thorne fatally shot 24-year-old Troy Foster in August 2017 when they met for the illegal sale of marijuana.

Foster’s cellphone records reportedly showed Thorne was the last person he communicated with before being shot. Authorities say Thorne  searched online for tips on how to remove gunshot residue from the body and clothes.

 He faces up to 50 years in prison.