UPDATE – Details Released: Police Arrest Man Involved in Murder of 19-Year-Old Male Lexington Park

January 14, 2022
Latres Javontae Cockerham, age 23 of Lexington Park

Latres Javontae Cockerham, age 23 of Lexington Park

UPDATE 1/14/2022 @ 11:30 a.m.: According to court documents, Joseph James Oakes, age 19 of Lexington Park was in the vehicle with five other subjects at the time of his murder.

Oakes died from a gunshot wound to his upper body. A second victim sustained a gunshot wound to his right arm, and a third victim sustained an injury to his right leg from what appears to be a (bullet) grazing his leg.

Investigation revealed the shooting occurred on Pegg Road in the area of Ronald Drive, where officers recovered seven spent 9mm shell casings.

Surveillance videos showed the victims Nissan SUV, and the suspects dark colored Nissan Sentra were side by side on Pegg Road when the shooting occurred. Surveillance shown is clear that multiple subjects discharged firearms from the four-door vehicle towards the victim’s vehicle as they continued to travel down Pegg Road. The rear passenger window on the four-door vehicle became visible and it is clear that it is rolled down and the passenger seated in the rear driver’s side seat has his/her arm extended from the vehicle in the direction of the victim’s vehicle.

After the shooting the victim’s vehicle was then observed accelerating quickly and almost losing control.

Detectives were contacted by a confidential informant who stated the suspect is a male goes by the nickname of “Tooter”.

Another confidential informant was able to provide a nickname of “Big Toots” for the suspect involved in the shooting and gave a description of the dark colored 2015 Nissan Sentra that he drives, they also gave the suspects real name as Latres Cockerham.

Police learned Cockerham was currently being monitored by a court ordered GPS tracking device and it was confirmed Cockerham was on Pegg Road and in a vehicle when the shooting occurred based on the speed he was travelling.

Police spoke to the registered owner of the Nissan Sentra, and she told police that her boyfriend “Tooter” commonly used the vehicle while she was at work and that on the day of the murder, he drove her to work and had possession of the vehicle for the remainder of the day.

Cockerham told police that he was in possession, and sole operator of the 2015 Nissan Sentra while the registered owner was at work, and that he travelled on Pegg Road several times that day.

Latres Javontae Cockerham (Previous Booking Photo)

Latres Javontae Cockerham (Previous Booking Photo)

UPDATE 1/14/2022 @ 9:30 a.m.: Latres Javontae Cockerham, age 23 of Lexington Park, was arrested on Friday, January 14, 2022, and Charged with the murder of Joseph James Oakes, age 19 of Lexington Park.

Preliminary investigation determined the victims were traveling in a vehicle in the area of Pegg Road and Watt Drive in Lexington Park when they were shot. The vehicle continued onto Westbury Boulevard and ultimately came to a rest after striking the median.

Anyone with information on this incident is asked to contact Detective Taylore Nauman at (301) 475-4200 extension 78109.

Latres Javontae Cockerham was charged with the following:

  • MURDER – FIRST DEGREE
  • MURDER-SECOND DEGREE
  • ATT 1ST DEG. MURDER (Five Counts)
  • ATT 2ND DEG. MURDER (Five Counts)
  • ASSAULT-FIRST DEGREE (Five Counts)
  • ASSAULT-SEC DEGREE (Five Counts)
  • HANDGUN IN VEHICLE
  • LOADED HANDGUN IN VEHICLE
  • HANDGUN ON PERSON
  • LOADED HANDGUN ON PERSON
  • FIREARM USE/FEL-VIOL CRIME

Updates will be provided later today.

UPDATE 1/13/2022 @ 1:40 p.m.: The deceased victim has been identified as Joseph James Oakes, age 19 of Lexington Park.

UPDATE 1/13/2022 @ 12:30 a.m.: Police recovered seven shell casings and other evidence on Pegg Road after the shooting.

UPDATE 1/12/2022 @ 9:45 P.M., On Wednesday, January 12, 2022, at 3:21 p.m. deputies from the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office responded to the 21400 block of Pegg Road, in the area of Westbury Boulevard in Lexington Park, for the reported shooting.

Deputies arrived on scene and located two male victims suffering from gunshot wounds.

Lifesaving measures were attempted, but a 19-year-old victim from Lexington Park, was pronounced deceased on scene. A 17-year-old victim, also from Lexington Park, was flown to an area trauma center for treatment.

Detectives and crime lab personnel from the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division responded to the scene and continued the investigation.

Preliminary investigation determined the victims were traveling in a vehicle in the area of Pegg Road and Watt Drive in Lexington Park when they were shot. The vehicle continued onto Westbury Boulevard and ultimately came to a rest after striking the median.

Anyone with information on this incident is asked to contact Detective Taylore Nauman at (301) 475-4200 extension 78109.

Citizens may remain anonymous and contact Crime Solvers at (301) 475-3333, or text a tip to “TIP239” plus their message to “CRIMES” (274637). Through the Crime Solvers Program tipsters are eligible for an award of up to $1,000 for information about a crime in St. Mary’s County that leads to an arrest or indictment.

The third victim was in the vehicle at the time of the shooting and suffered an injury as a result from the incident, however, it is unknown how the victim obtained the injury and police are still investigating. Emergency personnel initially reported the injury was a gunshot wound.

At approximately 5:30 p.m., emergency medical personnel responded to the 23000 block of Camden Way in California and transported a 18-year-old male to an area hospital for unknown injuries.

Updates will be provided when they become available.

UPDATE 1/12/2022 @ 4:05 p.m.: Crews on the scene reported a third victim arrived on the scene with a gunshot wound to the upper leg, the injuries were reported as non-life-threatening. The gunshot victim with CPR in progress has been declared deceased on the scene.

1/12/2022 @ 3:30 p.m.:  On Wednesday, January 12, 2022, at approximately 3:23 p.m., police, fire and rescue personnel responded to the area of Westbury Boulevard and Warwick Drive in Lexington Park, for the reported shooting with multiple victims.

Crews arrived on the scene to find a single vehicle collision with one gunshot victim laying outside of the vehicle not breathing.

Firefighters pronounced CPR in progress on one victim and located a second gunshot victim a short time after arrival..

Maryland State Police Helicopter Trooper 7 has been requested for the second victim with reported non-life-threatening injuries.

Police are on the scene and the area will be closed for an extended period of time. The vehicle was struck by projectiles at least six times.

Updates will be provided when they become available.