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Pittsburgh Police 'very close' to making an arrest in fatal shooting outside Oliver Citywide Academy

A Pittsburgh Police cruiser parked outside of the Bureau's headquarters on the city's North Side.
Kiley Koscinski
90.5 WESA
A Pittsburgh Police cruiser parked outside of the Bureau's headquarters on the city's North Side.

An arrest could be coming soon in connection with the death of a 15-year-old Oliver Citywide Academy student, according to Pittsburgh Police. “I feel we’re very close on that case, to closing that case,” Major Crimes Commander Richard Ford said at a press conference Thursday.

Marquis Campbell was shot inside a school van near Oliver Citywide Academy in January. He died soon after at Allegheny General Hospital.

Ford said that although the shooting happened nearly six months ago, investigators have been working daily to solve the case. He said detectives had to retrace details of the incident without the help of tools like security footage and witnesses.

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“There’s a lot of follow up, a lot of things that have to be backtracked. And it takes a long time,” he said. Ford added that investigators have confronted obstacles in the investigation, though he did not describe what those challenges were.

“I’m very pleased with where we’re at right now” in the investigation, Ford said. “I would hope that in the very near future we’ll have an announcement.”

Airbnb shooting

Police said they’re also still actively investigating the Easter morning shooting at a house party at a North Side Airbnb. Two minors were killed and eight others were injured in the incident. Police said investigators have made progress, but declined to estimate when an arrest might be made.

“It’s a very complicated scene as everybody knows,” Ford said. “There’s a lot of evidence to process. There’s new things that have come out that we’re not aware of and we have to investigate those.”

Ford said investigators have had to interview the same witnesses multiple times. He repeated pleas to the public for any new witnesses to come forward or for anyone with new information to call police.

Police provided the updates as part of a new weekly press conference hosted at the Bureau’s North Side headquarters. Also present was Mayor Ed Gainey, who commended officers for committing to weekly updates for the public.

“This is a way that we better connect to the city,” he said. “We want to thank the public. … Some of the tips that you heard today came straight from the public. And we just want them to know that we’re working diligently hard.”

Kiley Koscinski covers city government, policy and how Pittsburghers engage with city services. She also works as a fill-in host for All Things Considered. Kiley has previously served as a producer on The Confluence and Morning Edition.