Baltimore man charged with pulling gun on elementary school basketball coaches

Published 3/16/2023 4:31 p.m. EDT, Updated 3/16/2023 5:12 p.m. EDT

A police line do not cross tape blocks a pathway near Penn Station.

A West Baltimore father has been arrested for allegedly pulling a loaded handgun on two coaches during an elementary school basketball game last week.

In charging documents, school police officers wrote Troy Antwaun Spencer, 48, was upset that his son wasn’t playing. Spencer allegedly pulled the handgun from his waistband and pointed it at two coaches.

“You better put my son into the game,” Spencer told them, according to charging documents.

The incident happened March 6 at Leith Walk Elementary Middle School in Northeast Baltimore. School Police Officer Martez Carter wrote in charging documents the two coaches “got into a brief struggle over said firearm on the sideline of the basketball court. [They were] able to tactically remove said loaded firearm from Mr. Troy Spencer.”

The scene caused a panic among children and parents. One woman and staff member grabbed her children, ran with them out of the building, and into her car.

One of the coaches, meanwhile, locked the gun away in his car until police arrived. School police recovered a loaded 9mm handgun from the car, they wrote in charging documents.

No one was hurt, and Spencer drove away, the officers wrote.

He was arrested Wednesday and a Baltimore district judge ordered him held without bail. Online court records do not yet list his attorney.

Spencer is charged with 23 counts, including assault, reckless endangerment, illegally possessing a weapon on school property, and illegally possessing a firearm with a previous felony conviction.

Court records show Spencer pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the late 1990s. He was sentenced to 30 years in prison with 18 years suspended and five years of probation.

He’s scheduled for a preliminary hearing April 18 in Baltimore District Court.

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“The allegations in this case are a prime example of why we need to take illegal gun possession seriously,” Baltimore State’s Attorney Ivan Bates said in an email from his office. “Normal disputes can escalate into life threatening situations when individuals are walking around with illegal firearms. Our lawmakers need to use instances like this to guide their actions in Annapolis.”