Falls Police Criminal Investigation Division detectives have made an arrest in a bold, midday murder in the city's North End on May 30.
Investigators charged Rodney Barnes-Staley, 21, of the Falls, with single counts of second-degree murder and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon in the slaying of Demetrius Grey.
Barnes-Staley, who surrendered to police with his attorney, pleaded not guilty to the charges during an arraigned in Niagara Falls City Court Tuesday afternoon.
He was ordered held without bail pending further proceedings on July 23.
Investigators had been seeking Barnes-Staley and had no comment on the arrest other than to say that their investigation was "ongoing."
The shooting in the 1600 block of Linwood Avenue left Grey dead and a second, unidentified man, injured.
Detectives said they were initially hampered in their investigation by a lack of cooperation from witnesses to the incident. Police had been called to a report of “shots fired and a man down” in the 1600 block of Linwood Avenue just before 1 p.m. on May 30.
When patrol officers arrived on the scene, they found Grey, 28, suffering from a gunshot wound to his upper body. Police said a passerby and two responding officers attempted CPR on Grey, but were unable to revive him.
He was pronounced dead at the scene.
The second victim, a 27-year-old Falls man, was taken to Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center for treatment of a gunshot wound to his foot. The wound was described as non-life-threatening.
Both victims were reportedly standing in front of 1667 Linwood Ave., the scene of a shooting on March 27. In the May 30 shooting, investigators said an unidentified car pulled into the intersection of 18th Street and Linwood Avenue, a short distance from where Grey and the other man were standing.
The car stopped in the intersection, and police said a gunman got out of the vehicle and began firing at the victims. The gunman then jumped back into the car and the vehicle sped away from the scene.
Detectives have not said whether Barnes-Staley was that gunman.
Falls Police Crime Scene Unit detectives recovered eight spent shell casings in and near the intersection of 18th Street and Linwood Avenue.
The March 27 incident involved the host of a large party in the building at 1667 Linwood Ave. being shot several times. The 30-year-old male victim was taken to the Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo for treatment of his wounds.
Police have not provided any recent updates on the status of that victim or their investigation of the shooting.
The building at 1667 Linwood Ave. has been described by sources as a “make-shift bar.” Sources have also told the Gazette that individuals involved with the operation of that location may also have had ties to a former Highland Avenue speakeasy known as the “Red Room” or “Red House”.
That violence-plagued party house was finally shut down after Falls city building inspectors condemned the property.