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Durham man who battled gun violence killed in shooting

Posted July 13, 2015

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— Durham police are investigating a shooting that left one man dead and another hurt Sunday evening.

Officers were dispatched to the 1400 block of Maplewood Drive about 5 p.m. and found Arthur Holeman Taylor Jr., 37, of Durham, lying in a driveway. He had been shot multiple times and was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Timothy Wade Samuel, 25, of Durham, was also shot. He was treated for injuries that were not life-threatening, police said.

Investigators said Samuel and Taylor appear to be victims of an ongoing dispute. Friends said the shootings might be related to issues Taylor had with a group of men who ride dirt bikes in the area.

Taylor was a longtime dirt bike rider who friends said wanted to help youth by turning their focus from violence to something more positive.

"Anytime something happened in his city, that's what he always said, 'Bikes up, guns down,'" said Deanna Thorpe, the mother of Taylor's daughter. "Anybody that knows A.J. knows he was trying to start a movement to stop the violence and teach kids something different besides violence and gangbanging. He was trying to do something positive because of his past. He was trying to show them something different."

Thorpe added that Taylor's efforts to stop gun violence make his death by gunfire even more difficult to handle.

On Monday, friends put his bike out on display in his memory.

Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call Durham police at 919-560-4440, extension 29336, or Crime Stoppers at 919-683-1200.


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