One security guard was killed and another was wounded in what police are calling a targeted attack.
The ambush happened around 1 a.m. Friday in the parking lot of a Capitol Heights apartment complex.
Police said the armed guards were in or around their personal cars when a gunman opened fire, killing 26-year-old Adrian Kinard of Northeast D.C.
The second guard ran onto Central Avenue where he was found by police and paramedics.
The attack was carried out near the leasing office for the Central Gardens Apartments and within feet of a security camera mounted on the side of the building.
Police spent the day looking for a black Dodge Charger seen leaving the parking lot.
By daylight, officers found a car matching the description at a nearby car wash. They spent time going through the car, but it is not related to the ambush.
Three men detained near the scene earlier Friday were also ruled out.
Police are working to review surveillance video as they continue to search for the person who carried out the attack.
The surviving guard suffered non-life-threatening injuries.
"Oh, I miss my son," said Kinard's mother, Cynthia. "It was senseless. They didn't have to shoot at them. I just don't understand."
Kinard could barely stand when reminiscing about her slain son.
"He's a loving, caring, young man," said Cynthia. "He loved his family. He loved his music. He just loved life. He was two weeks shy of going out for [Prince George's] County police."
Langston Sharps said his brother in recent weeks expressed concerns about safety in this neighborhood.
"The shooting and the killing and the drug use and all that, he just wanted to do his job and go home," said Sharps. "He didn't want trouble from nobody."
Trouble apparently found the aspiring police officer.
Adrian Kinard leaves behind 1-year-old daughter, Arianna, a soon-to-be-fiancee and his mother, brother and two sisters.
"The violence is not necessary," said Sharps.
"I'm angry to the fact that my children had to come out and see this," said Latania, who lives in the Capitol Heights neighborhood where Kinard was killed.
She only provided her first name as she talked about the families and lives torn apart.
Kinard's mother said it best: "It's just senseless. One family is suffering because of a death. The other one may suffer because you're going to be in jail."
A family member says Kinard's job as a security guard may have cost him his life. The family member says Kinard reported illegal activity in the neighborhood to police and his family thinks he was killed in retaliation.
Kinard's mother said this is the second son she has loss from gun violence. His family has set up a Go-fund me account for funeral costs.