Violent crimes spike in Boston area
MATTAPAN, Mass. -- The murders in Mattapan were just the latest in a sudden spike in violent crimes in Boston this year.
Taking into account Tuesday morning's crimes, Boston has had 53 murders in the city in 2010, which is more than a 32 percent increase from last year, and is also more than the number of murders recorded from January to September of 2008.
Boston's murder rate is now in the panic zone with this latest case.
"We cannot accept this again. We have to be strong and we have to say this is the end. We're not gonna accept this [any] more," said resident Rhonda Valbrun.
Valbrun has posted crime alerts at the scene of Boston's 50th, 51st, 52nd and 53rd murders of the year. Her anger was echoed by Boston's Mayor Tom Menino.
"Cowards kill. Cowards use guns to settle their scores. Cowards hide," said Boston Mayor Thomas Menino.
The mayor was especially appalled by the toddler's death. He was the fourth child murdered in a citywide wave of violence.
On February 10, Deyquan Gomez was killed in Hyde Park. On May 8, Jaewon Martin was gunned down on a basketball court in Roxbury, and on May 30, Nicolas Fomby-Davis was pulled off his scooter and shot dead in Dorchester.
All three boys were 14-year-old.
"It's hard for us to say whether or not there is a trend or pattern. I don't think so, but there have been some very disturbing events here, I don't think there is any question about that," said the Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel Conley.
Clergy members are also got involved to break the culture of violence. They gathered in Mattapan to comfort neighbors who were rattled and dismayed. Some have already been scared off their own street.
"I had to get off the street because I lived here for 18 years and I just got tired of all the crime that was going on," said Sheila Fingleton, who said she is tired of the violence.
Crime is catching a community in the crossfire and putting a city and the mayor on the offensive.
"We're going to get 'em, lock 'em up, and throw away the key," said Menino.
RECENT HISTORY: OTHER SHOOTINGS IN BOSTON
Tuesday's crime was the deadliest shooting in Boston since 2005, when four people were shot to death in a basement recording studio of a Dorchester home.
The shooter in that case, Calvin Carnes Jr., wanted one of the victim's handguns. He grabbed the gun, shot the victim, and shot the other three as they were trying to run away.
Carnes Jr. was convicted in that case and is serving life in prison.
In 1991, five men were shot and killed inside a basement social club in Boston’s Chinatown neighborhood. A sixth man was seriously hurt, but survived.
All of the victims were shot in the head and the killers in this case fled to China, where they were arrested.
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