Statement of Charges For Torrey Moore; Man Accused of Killing Shell Station Employee and 8-Month Pregnant Woman in White Oak

Statement of Charges, per the Montgomery County State’s Attorney: “On 12/8/22 at 3:00 PM, Montgomery County Police responded to a convenience store at the Shell Gas station located at 11150 New Hampshire Ave, Silver Spring, Montgomery County, Maryland for a report of a shooting. Upon arrival, officers found the victim, Ayalew Wondimu, a black male with date of birth of 11/6/61, suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. Investigation revealed the victim was working inside the store, behind the register when he was shot. Wondimu was pronounced deceased on the scene.

Your affiant (Detective Dimitry Ruvin) reviewed surveillance video from inside and outside the store. The video showed the suspect entering the store at 2:58PM. The suspect selected a soft drink and then approached the victim, who was standing behind the cash register. The suspect appeared to have a conversation with the victim and then picked up several items from on top of the counter and threw them at the victim. The victim picked up a pole and attempted to strike the suspect. The suspect then backed up and produced a handgun and fired at the victim.

The victim fell down behind the register. The suspect then approached the counter, leaned over and fired several more shots into the victim’s body. The suspect then picked up the soft drink and left the store. Torrey Damien Moore, a black male with date of birth of 4/13/91, was developed as a suspect and your affiant obtained an arrest warrant charging the suspect with First Degree Murder (CR 2-201) and Use of a Firearm in a Felony / Violent Crime (CR 4-204 (b)).

Your affiant also obtained a search warrant for the suspect’s residence located at 11235 Oak Leaf Drive, Apartment 809, Silver Spring, Montgomery County, Maryland. The search warrant was served on 12/9/22. The suspect was arrested inside the residence. A Jimenez Arms semiautomatic handgun was recovered from the residence during the execution of the search warrant. A body of a deceased female was discovered on the floor of the bedroom of the apartment residence. The body was in an advanced stage of decomposition.

The suspect was transported to the Montgomery County Police headquarters, advised of his Miranda rights and interviewed. The suspect confessed to going to the store in question, engaging in an altercation with the store clerk and shooting him. The suspect was asked about the deceased female in his apartment and he stated that it was his girlfriend, Denise Middleton, a black female with date of birth of 3/14/96.

While talking to the suspect, your affiant discussed a possibility that Denise Middleton was shot with the same gun as victim, Ayalew Wondimu, at the gas station store. The suspect responded, “I’m pretty positive she was shot with the same gun”

‘The suspect stated that he briefly left the residence and when he returned he discovered the victim deceased and found a gun in his residence. He later used this gun to shoot the store’s clerk. The suspect denied killing the victim, Denise Middleton. Your affiant asked the suspect to go over the circumstances surrounding Denise Middleton’s death and he described the following:

Sometime in October of 2022, the suspect responded to New York City to bring Denise Middleton back to Maryland. When asked to narrow the timeframe, the suspect stated he left for New York right after he contacted the Montgomery County Police about a vandalism to his apartment door. Montgomery County police records showed that he filed that report on 10/5/22. The suspect stated the two returned back to Montgomery County from New York city shortly thereafter. On the day of Denise Middleton’s death, they left the apartment to get food. According to the suspect he began arguing with Denise Middleton on the way back to the apartment. The suspect stated, “I pushed her down” in front of his apartment residence. The suspect stated Denise Middleton was “acing like I was trying to kill her”. The suspect stated he told Denise Middleton to “get off the ground” and “stop putting on a show”. The suspect stated once at the residence, Denise Middleton was “still kirking out a little bit.” The suspect stated, “a slap was probably thrown” and “I probably choked her a little bit. The suspect stated he and Denise Middleton then went into the bedroom and that he was trying to calm Denise Middleton down. The suspect stated he then left to buy some marijuana. The suspect stated he returned within an hour and discovered Denise Middleton deceased. When asked if Denise Middleton had any gun shot wounds or other wounds the suspect stated that he was not sure. The suspect further stated that Denise Middleton was pregnant and that she told him that the baby was his. The suspect stated that the baby was due in October and that it was a boy. The suspect continued to deny killing Denise Middleton. The suspect also stated a few days after discovering Denise Middleton deceased, he travelled to California and stayed there for over a month. He recently returned back to Maryland and to his residence.

Your affiant wants to note the following about the ballistic evidence in this case. Four (4) FC 9mm luger spent shell casings were recovered at the Shell gas station store scene. The handgun recovered in the suspect’s residence contained one (1) live FC 9mm luger round in the chamber and six (6) rounds in the handgun’s magazine. Two (2) spent FC 9mm luger shell casings were found near Denise Middleton’s body.

On 12/10/22, your affiant attended the autopsy conducted at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) for the State of Maryland. Your affiant learned Denise Middleton was shot seven (7) times and several projectiles were recovered from her body. A male fetus was discovered during the autopsy. Your affiant was advised by a forensic pathologist that the fetus was viable.

The suspect’s criminal history includes arrests for Armed Robbery, First and Second Degree Assaults, Robbery with Deadly Weapon, Kidnapping, CDS Possession with Intent to Distribute, Loaded handgun on person and other charges. Your affiant also learned the suspect was currently wanted for an aggravated assault on victim Denise Middleton from Norfolk, Virginia. Your affiant obtained a police report dated 6/2/22 from Norfolk Police. In that case, Denise Middleton told police that the suspect “had punched and then choked her for about three minutes to the point she could not breath”.

Based on the above stated facts, your affiant has probable cause to believe that the suspect, Torrey Moore, murdered the victim, Denise Middleton. Your affiant further believes in doing so, the suspect caused the death of a viable fetus. Based on the above stated facts, your affiant requests an arrest warrant be issued for Torrey Damien Moore charging him with First Degree Murder (CR 2-201) (Victim – Denise Middleton) and Murder or Manslaughter of Viable Fetus (CR 2-103).

The above stated events occurred in Silver Spring, Montgomery County, Maryland.”

After reviewing the report by the Office of Court-Ordered Evaluations and Placements (OCEP) within the Department of Health (MDH), Judge Amy Bills ruled last week that Moore is not competent to stand trial and is scheduled a date for a competency hearing on June 13th, 2023. She also scheduled a preliminary hearing for January 6th, 2023.

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