Family pleads for end to street violence


A Roxbury teen fatally shot in Dorchester last week was mourning the death of his pal, who was gunned down by a masked man in a neighborhood barbershop only a day earlier, the boy’s uncle told the Herald yesterday.

“It’s part of the culture here to memorialize. He was at the memorial for his friend — it could happen to anybody,” Juan Martinez, 41, said in Spanish while speaking of his 16-year-old nephew Jerry Gomes.

Police said Gomes was killed on Payson Avenue Sept. 6 at about 11:15 p.m. The day before, cops said Alberto Monteiro-Pire, 21, of Dorchester, was killed in a brazen morning shooting while inside a barber shop. A witness said Monteiro-Pire was sitting in a barber chair at the Creole International Style on Stoughton Street, when a masked man burst into the store and fired three or four shots.

Martinez described his nephew as a “happy and smart” boy who was best friends with his 14-year-old son, who idolized his older cousin.

Gomes was not in a gang, Martinez said.

Boston police spokesman Lt. Detective Michael McCarthy said in an email: “There is no indication that either incident was random. We are looking into the possibility that gang affiliation may have contributed to the incidents.”

Cops said as of yesterday afternoon, there have been 37 slayings in the city compared to 29 during the same time last year. Gomes’ homicide marked the third teen, ages 13 to 17, killed this year. That equaled the number of teen victims slain last year during the same period, police said.

“Every time a person that young, 16, dies, it’s a sharp loss because we know that person could have done great things,” said Emmett Folgert of the Dorchester Youth Collaborative.

He called on parents, teachers, government agencies and the private sector to step up in order to keep children safe from street violence.

“Everybody talks about police engagement — what about the rest of us?” he added.

Gomes’ godmother Eugenia Gomes, 52, yesterday lamented the violence that claimed the teen.

“Jerry is my baby. Jerry is my everything,” she said. “Stop crime in our community because there is a lot of crime around here. Teens. Babies. Sixteen years old, they don’t know anything yet. He was just starting life.”

Martinez said his teen son was so shaken by Gomes’ slaying, he had to be hospitalized.

Martinez also has a teen daughter and he said, living in his Dorchester neighborhood, his nephew’s homicide has made him a more protective…


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