Wilson Chavis Credit: Prince George's County Police Department

A tragic shooting incident unfolded at a cemetery in Suitland, Maryland, resulting in the death of one individual. The Prince George’s County Police Department’s Homicide Unit has charged a 48-year-old man, identified as Wilson Chavis of Hughesville, MD, in connection with the fatal shooting. The victim has been identified as 30-year-old Ronald Steven Banks from Washington, DC, who was serving as a pallbearer during a burial service at the cemetery.

On June 6, 2023, at approximately 1:20 pm, authorities received a distressing report of a shooting at a cemetery located in the 4100 block of Suitland Road. Upon arrival, officers discovered Banks suffering from a gunshot wound. Tragically, he succumbed to his injuries shortly after being transported to a nearby hospital. Another adult female victim was also injured, sustaining a graze wound.

Preliminary investigations conducted by law enforcement revealed that Chavis owns a funeral service company responsible for providing funeral and burial services for a young child being laid to rest at the cemetery. Before the commencement of the burial service, Chavis confronted two individuals associated with another funeral service company, with whom he had an ongoing business dispute. The situation escalated as attendees expressed their disapproval of Chavis’ actions, resulting in a confrontation. According to initial findings, Chavis brandished a firearm and discharged two shots, striking both victims. Subsequently, he fled the scene in his vehicle. Fortunately, within minutes, an officer from the Morningside Police Department spotted Chavis and conducted a traffic stop, leading to his arrest.

The suspect, Wilson Chavis, now faces charges of first and second-degree murder, attempted first and second-degree murder, and other related offenses. He is currently in the custody of the Department of Corrections as the investigation continues.

Authorities are urging anyone with information relevant to this case to come forward and assist in the ongoing investigation. Detectives can be reached at 301-516-2512. Crime Solvers offers a hotline at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477) for those who wish to remain anonymous. Additionally, anonymous tips can be submitted online at www.pgcrimesolvers.com or through the “P3 Tips” mobile app, available for download on Apple Store or Google Play. Please reference case number 23-0033316 when providing information.

The tragic shooting incident has shocked the community and highlights the need for conflict resolution and de-escalation techniques, particularly in situations as sensitive as funeral services. The Prince George’s County Police Department is committed to thoroughly investigating this incident and ensuring justice for the victims and their families.

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

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