Two teenage girls, believed to be 15 and 16 years old, were arrested, and a loaded pistol with a laser sight was allegedly recovered, after Boston police officers reported hearing bullets in the parking lot of the Area B-2 station in Roxbury on Monday, officials said
The two girls face several charges as juvenile delinquents, including multiple counts each of attempted assault and battery on police officers, unlawfully discharging a firearm within 500 feet of a building, illegal possession of a firearm, and illegal possession of a high-capacity device, officials said.
Craig E. Collins, the defense attorney for the girl who allegedly was in possession of the gun when police stopped them, said law enforcement has provided no evidence that the gunfire was directed at the officers or anyone else, and have also failed to demonstrate that his client was the shooter.
“They have made that formal accusation” that the shots were aimed at police, Collins said. “But the evidence of that is very questionable as to the location where the shots were fired, whether anyone was specifically targeting anyone, either the officers or anyone else.”
According to police, the incident unfolded around 5:41 p.m. at the police station in Nubian Square at 2400 Washington St. when officers standing near their cruisers and personal cars parked behind the station “heard what sounded like gunshots in their immediate vicinity,’' Boston police said in a report.
“Officers described hearing the sound of bullets traveling through the air above their heads,” police wrote.
Police said they saw bullet holes in an officer’s personal car and were then notified of a ShotSpotter activation on St. James Street and the St. James Street Park, which overlooks the station and the Roxbury Municipal Court.
Officers responded to the St. James Street Park area and the surrounding neighborhood. While driving on Akron Street toward Regent Street, police saw three people. “Officers approached these three individuals, stopping near Dabney Street,” police wrote. “One individual fled. Two females tried to run back down Dabney towards Regent and officers were able to stop them on Dabney Street.”
One of the girls, police allege, tried to dispose of a handgun. An officer “saw the second one take a black handgun out of her black jacket pocket and place it on the ground in front of” a home in the single digits of Dabney Street, police wrote.
The handgun was identified as a loaded .40-caliber Glock Model 22 pistol with an attached laser sight, police said.
But Collins, the defense attorney, said police reports filed in court describe a pursuit riddled with errors. He said police wrote about searching two houses on Dabney Street for a teenage boy - and only realized they were at the wrong address when an officer reviewed body camera video showing a third house was the right one to search.
“The police were engaged in a very chaotic pursuit,” he said. “It just goes to show that police officers can make mistakes like the rest of us.”
Collins also said that police reports show that a witness to the incident identified the other girl, not his client, as the person who actually fired the shots. “We have a witness who said it was not my client who fired the shots, it was the other person,” he said.
He noted that while a witness says his client was not the shooter, both girls are facing the same charges under the legal principle of joint venture.
He said at least one officer is identified in police reports as having on an active body camera, but he does not yet know if the moment when his client allegedly placed the pistol on the ground was also recorded on body camera.
Collins said his client and the second girl were both detained pending a dangerousness hearing now scheduled for Friday in Suffolk Juvenile Court.
Sergeant Detective John Boyle, a department spokesman, said some of the officers who responded to St. James Street were wearing body cameras, but he could not say if a recording was made of the girl as she allegedly dropped the weapon. He said the department would not release any video recorded during the incident because an investigation is ongoing and the suspects are juveniles.
Ballistic evidence found in the park, along with ShotSpotter reports, indicates that five shots were fired in the direction of the station, Boyle said.