This story was updated at 4:05 p.m. Dec. 4, 2012.
Residents of the Whetstone Apartments in Gaithersburg describe the area as “really quiet,” safe, and pleasant. But the quiet row of apartments was the scene of a fatal stabbing early Monday.
Bruce Goldfarb, a special assistant to the state’s Chief Medical Examiner said Tuesday that Cesar Gregory Smith, 45, of Gaithersburg, died from multiple stab wounds to the torso. Smith was found dead in a unit of the apartment complex at 22 Whetstone Drive, Montgomery County police said.
Shortly after midnight, officers from the Gaithersburg Police Department and Montgomery County police responded to a report of a shooting at the Whetstone Apartments at 22 Whetstone Drive in Gaithersburg, according to Montgomery County police.
Police found Smith in an apartment unit, having suffered “blunt force trauma” to his body, Montgomery County police spokesman Capt. Paul Starks said.
Smith was pronounced dead on the scene by county Fire and Rescue personnel, according to police.
Starks said police had not yet confirmed the nature of the association between Smith and his killers and that the investigation is still ongoing.
Smith was in the apartment with another man when multiple suspects entered the apartment and separated the two, police said. After a brief amount of time, the suspects were heard arguing with the victim and then left the apartment, police said.
The surviving man found the injured victim inside the apartment and called police.
Investigators believe that the crime was not random and that the victim and suspects may have known each other, Starks said.
A resident who lives in a building nearby said she heard shots.
“I just heard a pow, pow, pow,” she said.
Clifton Bowie, a neighbor who has lived in the complex for the last five years, said such incidents are unheard of.
“I haven’t heard of even any break-ins,” he said.
“[Smith] was a loner and didn’t fool with too many people,” said Delah Jay, a woman living in a nearby apartment.
He was dating a friend of hers, she said.
“I was up until 1:30 a.m. and I didn’t hear anything,” said Sharee Henson, who lives in an apartment building across the lot from where police found Smith.
Henson said Smith, or “Goldie,” was a friend of her mother’s.
“This is really scary,” she said, adding that she walks by the apartment on her way to her job at a nearby mall.
“That doesn’t sit well with me,” she said.
A manager of the apartment complex said Smith was not a resident. Starks said that the apartment was one of the former places where he had lived, and that he may have lived in more than one place.
Police are asking anyone with information regarding this crime to contact the Major Crimes Division at 240-773-5070. Those who wish to remain anonymous may call Crime Solvers of Montgomery County at 866-411-TIPS (8477). Crime Solvers will pay a cash reward of up to $1,000 for information that leads to an arrest and/or indictment for this crime.
Staff Writer Kara Rose contributed to this report.