Four men seated in a stopped vehicle were shot, one of them fatally, in the thickly settled Jones Hill neighborhood of Dorchester early Wednesday evening, according to Boston police.
Boston Police Commissioner William G. Gross confirmed that a man was pronounced dead at the scene.
Three other men were taken to local hospitals where they are being treated for what were believed to be non-life threatening injuries, Gross told reporters at the scene. The victims were believed to be in their mid- to -late-30s.
The slaying marks the city’s 12th homicide of the year, compared to 16 at the same point last year, said Gross.
“It definitely appears to us to be not random,” said Gross.
There is a possibility, said Gross, that the parties involved in the fatal shooting were known to each other.
Police responded to a radio call for the quadruple shooting on Windermere Road shortly before 6:30 p.m. The victims were seated in a vehicle when they were shot, said Gross. The preliminary investigation indicated that the shooter was on foot and the vehicle was stopped when the shots rang out, according to Gross.
Police were looking for the suspect Wednesday night, and officers canvassed the area for witnesses and video surveillance.
Authorities did not specify what kind of vehicle was shot up.
“We deserve to be safe here,” said Suffolk District Attorney Rachael Rollins at the scene. “We’re going to be working as hard as we can to get this family some answers.”
At the crime scene, near the corner of Windermere Road and Cushing Avenue, a small group of people watched as police investigated. The avenue was cordoned off. The police presence was heavy. At one point, inside the yellow police tape, a grief-stricken woman wailed and was comforted by a man in a suit.
“I raised my kids here,” said Marshella Sobers, a 44-year-old Cushing Avenue resident. “It’s not anything like it used to be. This is bad.”
Sobers, who works in the eye clinic at Boston Medical Center, was watching television when the shooting happened. She didn’t hear the gunshots, but saw police swarm the area. She has lived in the neighborhood for 15 years and recalled a shooting that occurred in front of her home less than two years ago.
“I don’t know what’s happening to my street, but I don’t like it,” she said.
Patricia Sorensen, a longtime Windermere Road resident, came home from her job at South Bay’s Stop & Shop to find her neighborhood thick with police and reporters. Sipping from an iced coffee and looking at the parked police vehicles, Sorensen, 49, called the shooting shocking and sad, but said she felt safe in the neighborhood, which she described as the kind of place where people look out for one another.
“They can’t stop me from getting in my house, right?” she asked.
Megan Thomas, a mother-of-two who works for a nonprofit, has lived in the neighborhood for 12 years. She said it can be a hotbed of violence.
“It has its lulls and then it sparks up again,” she said.
She said she still walks her dog in the neighborhood, but added that she knows to watch her back and that “certain parts of the hill are more dangerous than others.”
She recalled a shooting during Mother’s Day weekend several years ago in the neighborhood. She was driving up the street with her kids and “a guy was running after another guy shooting at him.” The target of the shooting did not get hit, but it was “terrifying for the kids,” said Thomas.
“I just think it’s tragic, and I just feel like why can’t we get the guns off the street?” she asked. “That will make the difference.”Danny McDonald can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @danny__mcdonald.