Charges: Man fatally shot girlfriend’s ex after assault at St. Paul bus stop

A man is facing murder charges for allegedly shooting and killing his girlfriend’s ex-boyfriend at a St. Paul bus stop right after the woman was assaulted by her ex.

The incident happened at around 2 p.m. Thursday near the intersection of Third and Earl streets.

When police arrived, they reported finding 30-year-old Jermaine Ray John Baker lying in the street and suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Friday, prosecutors charged 31-year-old Lazarus Lamar Burns II with his murder.

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Multiple witnesses told police that Baker got off a bus and ran up to a man and woman at the bus stop, court documents state. Baker then reportedly started assaulting the woman, knocking her to the ground and “smashing her face in,” according to one witness’s account.

When Baker finally stopped hitting the woman — later identified as his ex-girlfriend — that’s when witnesses and surveillance video showed Burns fire multiple shots at Baker, who started running away before collapsing in the street.

A criminal complaint states that surveillance video reviewed by police showed Baker appearing to look for someone before he bolted off the bus. Eight seconds elapsed from when Baker reached the woman to the time he was back in the street, the document adds.

When police talked to the woman, she noted she had been dating Baker on and off for four years but started dating Burns a few days ago. She added that Baker routinely assaulted her but she never reported it, and during the assault at the bus stop, she heard Burns telling Backer to chill out before she heard the gunshots.

The complaint adds that the woman had a swollen face and multiple bumps on her head.

Burns told police that he didn’t know Baker but heard him say, “This my (expletive), bro,” as he started assaulting the woman. Charging documents state that Burns told officers he’s seen men abuse women several times in his life and when he saw Baker attack his girlfriend he “blacked out” and shot him. He also noted he had a permit to carry from Wisconsin.

Burns is now charged with second-degree murder and faces up to 40 years in prison if convicted. He was scheduled to make his first court appearance Friday afternoon.

St. Paul police at the scene of a homicide at Third and Earl Streets on July 27, 2023. (KSTP-TV)