Chad Lembach was working as a delivery driver for UPS when he stopped at a red light late one afternoon at the intersection of Light and Conway streets near the Inner Harbor.
Lembach said he had made a delivery to a nearby luxury apartment building on Light Street at about 4:30 p.m. on July 7, 2022, when something caught his attention.
“I saw a man walk across the street with a baseball bat in his hand,” Lembach testified on Tuesday in Baltimore Circuit Court.
Lembach went on to describe his recollection of a confrontation that unfolded between the man and a group of squeegee workers. It ended when one of the young people shot the man five times.
Timothy Reynolds, 48, of Hampden, was later pronounced dead at the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center at the University of Maryland. He was an engineer and a married father of three.
The testimony came on the second day of the trial of a 16-year-old who’s charged with first-degree murder and related offenses in the deadly shooting. The killing ignited debate and sparked policy changes relating to squeegee workers — mostly young Black men who wash car windows at various intersections in the city in hopes of receiving cash tips.
Prosecutors called seven witnesses that included eyewitnesses, detectives and crime laboratory technicians.
Circuit Judge Jennifer B. Schiffer is presiding over the trial, which will resume Wednesday morning. The Baltimore Banner is not identifying the teen because of his age. He was 14 at the time and attended Digital Harbor High School.
In her opening statement, Assistant State’s Attorney Cynthia Banks said Reynolds was outmanned, outmaneuvered and gunned down when he stepped out of his SUV and confronted the squeegee workers.
Baltimore Police, she said, collected surveillance video from the busy intersection just a few blocks from Camden Yards that showed what happened. That’s in addition to receiving dash camera video from a car that was stopped at a red light at the intersection.
Banks alleged that one of the squeegee workers washed Reynolds’ windshield when he was stopped at a red light. The teen — who was wearing a distinctive pink T-shirt — then leaned on Reynolds’ SUV and said something to the driver that upset him, Banks asserted.
“He was upset. He was mad,” Banks said. “He was human.”
Then, Reynolds drove through the intersection, parked, retrieved a bat and walked across multiple lanes of traffic to confront the squeegee workers. Meanwhile, the teen ran across Conway Street, picked up a backpack that contained a handgun and rejoined the group, the prosecutor said.
Reynolds started to walk away with the bat held down. That’s when three squeegee workers followed him. The teen retreated again and covered his face, Banks said.
The driver swung the bat, but was struck in the head and became dazed. Banks said the teen fired five times while backpedaling.
The teen, she said, took off. Police later found a backpack that contained a gun, Banks said.
Prosecutors previously stated that the teen’s DNA was found on a strap of the bookbag.
Surveillance video, she said, shows the teen heading down Charles Street with his face covered. He later took off his shirt.
Law enforcement put out an alert for officers to be on the lookout for the shooter, Banks said. Police recognized the young man from an encounter on the Fourth of July, which was captured on body camera video, she said.
“You must be objective. Because we have it on video,” Banks said. “You cannot — cannot — overlook the fact that Mr. Reynolds was shot dead.”
But J. Wyndal Gordon, one of the teen’s attorneys, continued to question the identification of his client while asserting that the shooter acted in self-defense or defense of others.
“The state would have you believe this case is about squeegee workers,” Gordon said in his opening statement. “This case is about road rage.”
Gordon disputed the claim that squeegee workers washed the windshield of Reynolds’ SUV that afternoon and stressed that the driver was 6 foot, 3 inches tall, and 329 pounds.
“He had bad intentions,” Gordon said. “He had a problem with squeegees. He took the law into his own hands, and it ended poorly for him.”
Reynolds, he alleged, had a blood alcohol content that was above the legal limit for driving in Maryland — a claim that prosecutors disputed. Gordon called what happened “onsite road rage to the highest degree” and an “unprovoked, aggressive, alcohol-fueled bat attack.”
At one point, Gordon took a jab at Thiru Vignarajah, a former Maryland deputy attorney general who’s representing the Reynolds family and was seated in the courtroom. Gordon told members of the jury, “You’re going to hear the real facts in this courtroom.”
In other testimony, David Stivelman said that he was driving home on Light Street when he also witnessed part of the confrontation. His SUV was equipped with a dash camera that recorded a portion of the altercation.
The Banner previously obtained and published the video. Prosecutors showed the clip as well as an enhanced version to the jury.
Reynolds, he said, appeared angry and gestured with the bat. “I could tell it was tense and escalated,” Stivelman testified.
On cross-examination, Stivelman testified that no shots were fired before Reynolds swung the bat. Reynolds also approached the squeegee workers initially, not the other way around, Stivelman said.
Another witness, Kallie McDaniel, testified that she was waiting to pick someone up for dinner in Federal Hill when she saw a young man or teen jumping up and down while seeming nervous.
“I just thought it was a little strange,” McDaniel testified.
At one point, McDaniel said, the young man started rummaging through a black backpack, took off a pink T-shirt and put it inside the bag. He then put a ski mask on his head, she said.
McDaniel said she worked over the summer as a law clerk for the Baltimore State’s Attorney’s Office, but stated that she was not involved in the investigation. She testified that she later called police and gave a statement to investigators.
No witnesses who have testified so far could identify the teen as one of the squeegee workers or the shooter.
Baltimore Police Detective Michelle Burke testified that she canvassed the area for evidence and later found a black backpack. She said she notified homicide detectives.
The backpack contained a handgun — it was a Polymer80 with no serial number — that had one cartridge in the chamber and 11 in a magazine, said Nicole Wilson, a crime laboratory technician for the Baltimore Police Department.
The magazine, she testified, indicated that it could hold 17 cartridges.