by Mike Donoghue, Vermont News First
Burlington Police Department and U.S. Marshals Service have made arrests associated with an attempted murder that occurred near Church and Main Streets on Saturday, April 29.
Tyrin “Kap” Smith, 19, was arrested on an attempted first-degree murder charge after two suspects were observed leaving an apartment at an unspecified address on North Street in Burlington on Monday.
A 17-year-old female, whose name was withheld by police, was also taken into custody. Significant quantities of drugs were recovered from Smith.
Officers subsequently executed a search warrant at the North Street address and recovered additional amounts of drugs.
Since the shooting incident, the investigation developed probable cause that Smith — while wearing a mask, ski goggles, and gloves— and his brother Fortune Smith, 22, also masked, made their way to an apartment at 165 Main Street in search of a person with whom they had exchanged adversarial and threatening electronic messages. His name is Malcolm Sovey, but no direct contact was made.
The Smith brothers climbed a fire escape into the location, traveled across a roof, climbed another fire escape, and entered a hallway. They then pounded on the door of the apartment. When they could not enter in that manner, they physically broke through the wall separating the hallway and the apartment.
Tyrin Smith then shot a victim, Aquill Nickson, in the upper chest. Nickson, who police said was in his 40s, was not the person with whom Smith had been exchanging threatening messages.
Nickson had been staying with Katelynn Charbonneau at 165 Main Street, across from City Hall and she had been robbed of her purse and cellphone and punched the night before the shooting in the hallway. Later she said one of the local drug dealers was using it.
Police said Nickson reported the bullet broke 5 ribs and would be left in him.
The wounded Nickson fled the apartment to the southwest corner of Church Street and Main Street, where he was found by responding officers and personnel from the Burlington Fire Department.
As Nickson fled he discarded a large quantity of crack cocaine. Nickson was subsequently arrested for felony drug possession.
Other individuals fled from the apartment by jumping from a third-story window.
Police said Tyrin Smith was captured on video with his brother, Fortune Smith, leaving an apartment at 134 North Street, near Rose Street about a half hour before the shooting.
Information is preliminary and subject to change.
Detectives interviewed witnesses, canvassed for video, and collected other evidence. That investigatory work led to their identifying Smith as the suspect. It is believed the Smith brothers initially fled to New Jersey, but eventually returned.
Smith is being held without bail. He denied both the attempted murder and burglary into an occupied dwelling on Tuesday.
The juvenile female is being investigated as an accessory after the fact. Police did not say the status of Fortune Smith.
Tyrin Smith does not have a known Vermont criminal history, but has 36 police contacts in Valcour, the statewide computer system used by law enforcement agencies.
Smith is the suspect in four incidents of burglary/robbery.
Aquill Nickson has an extensive criminal history in Pennsylvania, including but not limited to illegal possession of a firearm, robbery, simple and aggravated assaults, drug offenses, terroristic threats, and flight to avoid trial.
Sovey has 107 police contacts in Valcour, while Charbonneu has 85, police said.
The BPD would like to thank the United States Marshals Service, the Milton Police Department, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives for their invaluable assistance in
All of the above is from court records and Burlington Police.