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Shots lead officer to killing

The gunshots sounded loud, so Tampa Police Officer Stuart Weiss, on routine patrol early Monday morning, knew the shooting was nearby. As he headed south on N Willow Avenue toward W Chestnut Street, just 80 yards from his patrol car, Weiss saw it _ a man pumping shot after shot into a 1977 gray Chevrolet Impala.

Police spokesman Don Peters said Weiss chased the shooting suspect several blocks, catching him at Spruce Street when he stumbled and fell near Blake Junior High School. The driver of the Impala also took off, but was found nearby slumped over the steering wheel.

The man in the car, 27-year-old David Dennis McKee of 5902 Memorial Highway, Apt. 301, Tampa, was taken to a hospital, where he died a short time later, police records said.

Homicide Sgt. Harold Sells said the shooting, which happened in an area known for drug sales, was drug-related.

Charged with first-degree murder is Donald Baldwin, 17, of 1706 N Freemont Ave. in Tampa. He was booked into the Hillsborough County Jail, where he was being held Monday without bail, a jail spokeswoman said.

Emergency room doctors told police that McKee bled to death after suffering numerous gunshots to his chest, back and head, Peters said. Detectives were still trying to determine the motive in the shooting, he said.

Weiss, who has been with the department for a year, heard the shots about 4:45 a.m. He drove toward the shots and saw the gunman, a 9mm automatic in his hands, shooting at the Impala. Gunshots shattered the rear window of the car and pierced the trunk, records said.

According to county records, Baldwin had been arrested and charged as an adult once before in August with one count of possession of cocaine and one count of possession of marijuana.