Court Documents – NBC4 Washington

Brian Ward’s family celebrated their third Thanksgiving without him since his disappearance in September 2020, and court documents outline a painful scenario for the family. Police believe he was shot during a marijuana deal, to which he went armed with a pistol.

“Sometimes I think I’m going to grieve to death because some days it’s just overwhelming,” Ward’s father said.

Ward’s family struggled with his disappearance for over a year until police found his body in December. Police made an arrest in the case last week.

Jonathan Ward said he has many questions about his son’s death. Brian Ward was last seen on September 29, 2020 at the 300 block of Allison Street NW – a few blocks from his home.

DC police responded to the sound of gunshots but found only broken glass on the sidewalk. Then, in December 2021, Ward’s body was found in woods off Contee Road in Laurel, Maryland.

Court documents say the man charged with Ward’s murder, 25-year-old Brandon Nguyen, has told detectives where to find his body.

Nguyen confessed to shooting Brian in self-defense. He said the teenager arranged to meet him on Allison Street to buy marijuana but instead pulled out a gun and “tried to rob him.” Nguyen said there was a fight and “one of us was going to die”. He said he grabbed the gun, shot Ward, panicked, and drove his body to Laurel.

The documents show Nguyen, who was identified using Ward’s cellphone, repeatedly lied to detectives.

Police tracked down the 2013 Acura TL that Nguyen was driving to Allison Street NW that day. It was sold the day after Ward was shot and still smelled of bleach, the new owner told detectives.

Court documents also state that a warrant for Ward’s iCloud account found photos of Ward with a handgun days before his disappearance.

Jonathan Ward said he was trying to keep up with what his son was doing.

“My son never had a charge, never, you know, caused any kind of charge, any kind of trouble with the police or anything,” he said. “He was at school and the day he asked me to go out he FaceTimed me and I was on my way home and, you know, they were doing virtual school at the time and I told him, well, just wait till I get home and make sure you finish whatever your work, whatever, your schoolwork, stuff like that. You make sure if we see how the house is in case I need you to do anything.”