After years of fighting extradition, a man accused of a 2009 triple slaying in Dorchester who had fled to Trinidad has been returned to Boston to face murder charges.
Keron Pierre, 27, will be arraigned Monday in Suffolk Superior Court on charges of shooting and killing Shacora Gaines, a 20-year-old Brockton mother of two; her friend Chantal Palmer, 20, also a mother from Brockton; and Anthony Peoples, 19, of Boston on March 29, 2009. About 18 months after the killings, Pierre was arrested in Trinidad on unrelated drug charges, authorities said. In January 2010, he was indicted on charges related to the Dorchester case.
Pierre recently gave up his fight against extradition, authorities said. On Friday, US marshals escorted him some 2,200 miles to Logan Airport, where he was placed under arrest, according to the office of Suffolk District Attorney Daniel F. Conley. “He’d fought extradition proceedings repeatedly over the last several years and each time courts had ruled against him,” said Jake Wark, Conley’s spokesman. “He had one final appeal and, ultimately, decided not to pursue that appeal in a Trinidadian court.”
Pierre, a former Mattapan resident, is considered the principal defendant in the murders, occurred on Mount Ida Road.
According to the district attorney’s office, investigators believe that Pierre and the victims got into “a heated verbal exchange.” Pierre then shot at the victims as they sat in a car after leaving a party to raise funds for Boston’s annual Caribbean festival, authorities said. A fourth person, a woman whose name has not been released, was with the three victims but was not injured, authorities said.
The four friends were leaving the party when a man followed them, trying to get the women’s phone numbers, the Globe reported shortly after after shooting.
The women reportedly turned down the requests, and Peoples told the pursuer to leave them alone.
Moments later, shots were fired into the Nissan Sentra.
Claudia Brown, Palmer’s mother, said Sunday night that she plans to attend Pierre’s arraignment. “It’s very emotional for all of us,” Brown, 50, said by phone. “It’s been a long, long wait. Hopefully we’ll get some justice for my daughter and the other families.”
Palmer’s son, Zaire Justice Palmer, was 4 months old when his mother died. Juna Francois, 24, the boy’s godmother, said she, Brown, and the boy’s father now care for Zaire.
She said Zaire, who will turn 5 in November, visited his mother’s gravesite for the first time this year and is just beginning to grasp the loss.
“He’s started to say ‘I miss my mom,’ ” said Francois.
She said he looks like his mother and sometimes he talks and acts like her too.
Francois doesn’t plan to attend Monday’s hearing. Instead, she will focus on Zaire. “My plan for the future is to finish nursing school and to be able to give him whatever he wants,” Francois said.
Pierre had fled Massachusetts days after the shooting, authorities said. He was identified as a suspect in December 2009. A month later, he was indicted by a Suffolk County grand jury on three counts of first-degree murder, one count of armed assault with intent to murder, and firearms offenses.
Pierre was arrested in Trinidad in September 2010 after police there said they found him with marijuana in the town of Diego Martin, where he had been living with his wife, authorities said.
According to the Trinidad Express newspaper, Pierre pleaded guilty later that month to possession of marijuana.
Nigel A. Nichols, 27, of Brockton, is also in custody. He is accused of driving Pierre from the scene after the shootings. Nichols was indicted in January 2010 on charges of being an accessory after the fact to the murders, authorities said. He pleaded not guilty and was ordered held on $150,000 bail, which was later lowered to $10,000. He posted bail but was arrested again when Boston police allegedly found him with a loaded .45-caliber handgun in October 2011. Authorities said he has been in custody ever since.