1 dead, 2 hurt in shooting at Hyattsville strip club

A security guard is dead, and two others are injured after suspects opened fire on a Hyattsville gentlemen’s club overnight Tuesday.

Prince George’s County police identified the security guard killed as 28-year-old Alex Lynch of Landover, Maryland.

While on scene, FOX 5’s Melanie Alnwick says 50 or more evidence markers could be seen scattered on the ground outside "Area Code Gentlemen's Club" on Chillum Road. 

The victim’s brother tells FOX 5 Lynch also worked as a Red Lobster waiter and was the life of their gatherings. The 28-year-old leaves behind a 4-year-old son.

"I thought I was dreaming at first," said the victim’s brother, Aaron Watkins. "Get a phone call: ‘Hey, your little brother is gone.’ What? Nah, I’m dreaming. And actually to find out that they took my little brother was heartbreaking."

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Police say the shooting happened around 12:40 a.m. Tuesday. At least two suspects are believed to have been in a vehicle that drove up to the club and opened fire from outside. Lynch was apparently unarmed. 

Family told FOX 5 a possible stolen vehicle was involved. 

Two other people, an adult man and adult woman, were shot while still inside the club. Police say those two are expected to be okay. 

By Tuesday afternoon, investigators were still unable to shed light on a possible motive. It’s still not clear wither Lynch was the target of that gunfire.

"A coward," said Watkins speaking of the suspects. "What did my little brother do to you? What'd he do? Because I don’t know no beef that he had. He never told me about anything. I don’t even know what he did. I need some closure."

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"We want to bring these suspects to justice, so I don’t want to, uh, put too much information out there and describe the scene any less or more than what you already described," Prince George’s County Police Chief Malik Aziz said.

The chief announced a $25,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

Prince George’s County’s Department of Permitting, Inspections and Enforcement slapped signs on the club’s bullet-ridden front door, saying the business has been shut down.

The department spokesperson wrote to FOX 5 in a statement:

DPIE inspectors conducted an investigation at the site today. The owner of the establishment, located at 2430 Chillum Road in Chillum, was issued a Violation Notice for allowing the tenant to operate a nightclub without a valid Use and Occupancy Permit (U&O). A U&O was issued in 2007 for a night club/supper club/restaurant. The establishment operated for years as the Mustang. At some point, the tenancy changed, requiring a new U&O. The new tenant operated the nightclub as the Area Code without applying for the appropriate permits. The violations noted today by DPIE include the establishment not having a valid U&O and not having a sign permit. The facility will be posted this afternoon as not approved for occupancy.

The club’s owner has not responded to FOX 5’s request for comment.

Anyone with information is asked to call police at 1-866-411-TIPS.