August 10, 2010 at 3:42 pm EDT | by Lou Chibbaro Jr.
Gay man murdered in D.C. apartment

D.C. Police Capt. Michael Farish said Delando King was found unconscious and stabbed in his apartment shortly after 6 p.m. Monday. (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

A 34-year-old gay man who was found stabbed to death in his D.C. apartment Monday night was last seen by friends leaving a gay bar over the weekend, said the city police homicide squad’s supervisor.

Capt. Michael Farish told reporters at a news briefing Tuesday that police discovered the victim, Delando King, unconscious and suffering from stab wounds in his apartment along the 1100 block of 10th Street, N.W., shortly after 6 p.m. Monday.

A separate police statement said police and a D.C. Fire & Emergency Medical Services crew rushed to the scene in response to an emergency call.

“Upon arriving on the scene they discovered a male victim unresponsive and suffering from apparent stab wounds; he was subsequently pronounced dead,” said the statement.

Farish confirmed the location as an apartment in a high-rise building at 1117 10th Street, N.W.

A surveillance camera at the building captured video footage of King entering the building with an unidentified male guest, Farish said. He noted the surveillance video also shows the unidentified man leaving the building a short time later carrying a bag that he did not have when he entered the building with King.

He said police planned to release photo images of the unidentified man taken from the video. Farish described the unidentified man as a “person of interest” rather than a suspect until investigators gather more information about the circumstances surrounding the case.

“We know two of the clubs [the victim] was at,” said Farish. “We’re looking for the public’s assistance if they saw him in another club.”

According to Farish, King was out with friends at the two clubs police have identified.

“They were able to give us a timeline as to when he left,” he said. “It’s after 12:30 Sunday morning where it becomes a little sketchy as to where he was and where he may have met somebody else. So if anyone knows Mr. King or if he was a regular anywhere, we’re definitely looking for the public’s assistance in identifying that, especially if they saw him in the company of anybody.”

Farish declined to identify the clubs that King patronized with friends in the hours before his death, saying investigators would rather have members of the community come forward with the names of places King may have visited that investigators don’t know about.

But one source familiar with the case said King had patronized the gay club Fuego on Friday night and early Saturday morning. Fuego, which caters to the LGBT Latino community, operates only on Friday nights and rents space at a non-gay club at 1818 New York Ave., N.E.

The owner of the Fuego nightclub venue could not be immediately reached.

King’s death comes one week after D.C. police released an alert to the LGBT community noting that five separate attacks against men are being investigated. All five attacks occurred in the city between June 2 and July 30 and are believed to be motivated by anti-gay bias.

The alert said that while police were examining the cases for possible similarities, they had yet to confirm whether they cases were related or whether any two or more of the assaults were committed by the same perpetrators.

Farish said homicide detectives investigating King’s murder were aware of the separate incidents, but don’t believe they are linked to King’s death.

“What we’re dealing with in this incident has no indication of being related to those incidents,” he said.

King worked for the federal government as an employee of the U.S. Indian Health Service, which is an arm of the Department of Health & Human Services.

“We at the Indian Health Service are very saddened to learn of the death of our colleague Dalando King, who was a member of the Navajo Nation,” the IHS said in a statement released Tuesday.

“Mr. King was a dedicated employee and a friend to many in the Washington area American Indian community. We extend our deep condolences to Mr. King’s family,” the statement says.

Lou Chibbaro Jr. has reported on the LGBT civil rights movement and the LGBT community for more than 30 years, beginning as a freelance writer and later as a staff reporter and currently as Senior News Reporter for the Washington Blade. He has chronicled LGBT-related developments as they have touched on a wide range of social, religious, and governmental institutions, including the White House, Congress, the U.S. Supreme Court, the military, local and national law enforcement agencies and the Catholic Church. Chibbaro has reported on LGBT issues and LGBT participation in local and national elections since 1976. He has covered the AIDS epidemic since it first surfaced in the early 1980s. Follow Lou

  • Thanks for covering this story. Hope you keep it up.

  • Its very sad to see so many people in the gay community being snuffed out by those without a conscious…It is
    paramount that these murderous individuals be punished to the full extent of the law so as to send a message that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated in DC or its surrounding suburbs…It also shows how just meeting a stranger on the street and taking them possibly home is a a very dangerous decision.

  • Very sad. I am just hoping that this does not trigger “copycat” attacks/murders as happened in London several years back.
    I have been in DC for 2 years and every month there is always some type of incident — as in every major city. Yes, we have come a long way over the years in terms of marriage, equality laws, etc,etc…. but the bigots are still out there with their hatred and only too happy to meet out punishment — up to death — as they see fit. The DC LGBT community should always remain vigilant — see something, say something — DC has LOTS of cops, so give them more things to do !

  • What’s going on in D.C.? I keep reading stories of anti-gay violence. Don’t think I’ll be planning any trips there soon.

    • The city is a pit. There is tremendous anti-gay violence (and has been for years). Further, there are roving gangs of black thugs going into gay-identified neighborhood to assault and rob gays. The police can’t / won’t or both act to stop the violence (plus the cops are pretty homophobic). I wish there would be a national boycott by gays against the city until DC is cleaned up and safe. PLEASE, don’t bring Gay Games to DC.

  • This is heart breaking news, how can man be so cruel? The world used to be fun back in the day, now it is filled with so much hate and anger. Devistated and feeling the pain of losing another young man’s life, so much potential… taken by an evil individual. Hope they find this individual and give him the maximum punishment. Rest in peace Delondo.

  • PLEASE BE CAREFULWHEN YOU ARE OUT! ALWAYS KNOW who you meet before going home with them, or be aware if someone is following you!
    RIP Delando,…you will be missed

  • Stop bringing heterosexuals to your apartment or home and this won’t happen. There are heterosexuals out there that will pretend to be gay so they can get into your place to kill you. The robbery is an afterthought. Make sure the men you bring to your place are gay.

    • If they’re pretending to be gay, how can you “make sure” before you bring them into your home?

    • And here we thought that asshattery was reserved for homophobes! Or, perhaps, Kevin is too young to vividly remember the exploits of Andrew Cunanan? Queers abuse and/or kill other queers more often than hets inflicted hate violence on Queers; and a Queer can be motivated to steal from a hook-up because of homelessness, drug addiction, or a pathology of rage.
      Still, a good rule of thumb when hooking up with a stranger is to not do it with anyone who cannot be validated by someone you trust. That may limit the amount of dick and ass one gets, but it will keep you from becoming an item on the police blotter.

    • Are you serious? You don’t think gay men committ crimes? Hell they do. Stop bringing strangers you meet at bars/clubs, on the street and definately leave the online sex-hook up sites alone. Time for gay men to get some standards about their lives. Is hooking up all that defines you as a person? We failed the 1970’s gay/sex revolution big time.
      But that doesn’t mean this guy had to die and I’m not blaming him at all. Because it doesn’t matter gay or straight, people are dying and becoming victims of crime all the time for annonymous sex.

  • I still haven’t seen any photos relesed by the police yet, what are they waiting for? If the photos have been released, could someone post a locaiton where they can be found. I don’t understand what the hold up is on releasing the photos. DC Police Department get off you butt and release the photos before this person strikes again!!!!

  • Murder is murder and it doesn’t matter who does it or why – it’s wrong!

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