PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — A man was shot and killed in Providence Tuesday morning and the gunman was subsequently charged with marijuana possession, Providence Police said.
Police believe the shooting may have been the result of an attempted home invasion.
According to Providence Police Maj. David Lapatin, the shooting occurred at about 2:30 a.m. at a home at 61-63 Moore Street. When officers arrived, they found a masked man dying in the backyard.
He was identified by police as Robert Aitchison, 26, of Johnston.
Lapatin said it’s believed multiple people tried to enter the home and one of the residents opened fire, killing Aitchison. Police are now searching for the other alleged intruders.
“We do believe they targeted that specific house for a specific reason,” Lapatin said.
Eyewitness News witnessed police removing bags full of marijuana plants and other evidence Tuesday afternoon, including lights and a kiddie pool, from both units of the home.
Police say Juan Mejia, 30, who fired the gun that killed Aitchison, has been charged with possession of marijuana with intent to deliver. Lapatin said Mejia has a medical marijuana caregiver card, but went over the plant limit.
Mejia has not been charged with a crime related to the shooting, which is still under investigation.
A second resident of the home was also taken into custody, but police say he has not been charged with anything.
“This happening was targeted,” said Lapatin. “The shooter is in our custody. We are looking for one or more individuals, but I think the people on Moore Street can be safe as far as any other incidents of this type.”
Investigators recovered a gun from the scene and are now looking into whether it belonged to the alleged intruders or the residents of the home.
Police say this situation is unrelated to several other pot busts in the city.