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Dorchester shooting was attempted murder-suicide involving husband and wife, Suffolk DA says

It was quiet Friday evening outside the Lawrence Street home in Dorchester where police believe a man shot his wife and then himself shortly after midnight.Jeremy C. Fox for the Boston Globe

A man was killed and a woman was wounded during an attempted murder-suicide early Friday in Dorchester, according to Suffolk District Attorney Kevin R. Hayden’s office.

The couple were married, prosecutors said. No other details of their relationship were immediately available Friday.

According to Hayden’s office, the man shot the woman and then turned the gun on himself.

The incident took place around 12:11 a.m. near the intersection of Lawrence Avenue and Mascoma Street when officers responded to the neighborhood and discovered both people suffering from gunshot wounds, officials said Friday.

A neighbor called 911 after hearing two gunshots and then seeing someone lying in the street, according to Broadcastify.com recording of Boston police dispatchers.


One minute later, it was reported that there were “two possible victims in the roadway,” police said.

The caller reported seeing a man on the porch, and police urged arriving officers to “use caution” after a black handgun was spotted near the man, according to the recording.

Police said they found the man and woman, both with gunshot wounds to the head.

The woman’s injuries were not life-threatening, said Boston Police Sergeant Detective John Boyle, a department spokesman. She was taken to a hospital for treatment of her injuries, officials said. She was in stable condition as of Friday afternoon, according to police.

Police said there is no threat to the general public.

The shooting is under investigation by homicide detectives and Hayden’s office.

No one answered the door at the couple’s home on Lawrence Avenue early Friday evening.

A package addressed to the woman lay undisturbed on the front porch. Members of the Boston Neighborhood Trauma Team made their way down the street, dropping off informational literature at each door.

Neighbors said the couple were friendly and kind, and there were no signs of trouble in their household. The man drove a taxi and sometimes gave neighbors a ride. The woman recently gave Juan and Margret Solano, who live two doors away, left-over donuts for their family.


“When we first moved in here, he was the first person to say, ‘Hey, welcome to the neighborhood,’ " Margret Solano said. “Even our kids, he always says, ‘Hi, how are you doing? How’s school going?’ "

But on Thursday night, the Solano’s were surprised by a sudden burst of gunfire coming from their neighbor’s home.

They had gone to bed around 11:30 p.m. and opened a window to allow a breeze into their third floor apartment. A short time later, they heard “Pop, pop, pop,” in quick succession, followed by a woman’s scream.

About two minutes after that, they heard a fourth shot, they said. The Solanos checked to make sure that their seven children were safe, and within about 10 minutes they heard police and ambulances arriving outside.

The Solanos watched as police taped off their street and then saw an officer outside the home two doors down place a gun in an evidence box and seal the box, and two people placed into ambulances, they said.

As the Solanos watched, a woman arrived and cried out to police, “What happened to my mom?” they said.

Juan Solano recalled the man as a friendly face in an often-troubled neighborhood.

“You know what kind of neighborhood we live in. You don’t encounter nice people too often. And he was really nice,” he said.


Another neighbor, who lives across the street, she had been friendly with the man but hadn’t known his name, and she had always called him “Taxi-man.”

“He always talks to everyone. He’s so nice,” said the woman, who identified herself only by her first name, Ann.

The man would often remind her and others on the block to move their cars on street-cleaning days. She said the woman had been home less often because she was at work and was active in her church.

“Those are the last two people that you would expect something like this from,” said Ann, who is 54. “But you never know about people’s personal lives.”

Julissa Cruz, 42, who also lives across the street, said the woman works for the MBTA and that her husband was an immigrant from Jamaica who had never adjusted to Boston winters.

“He was so sweet, a family oriented guy, Christian,” Cruz said. “They were always together, cleaning the home, cleaning the yard … vacuuming the car,” she said.

She was shocked to look outside her home and see the police response early Friday morning.

“I was terrified, and then when I found out what really happened, that it was him, it was more like I was disappointed,” she said.

The neighborhood’s postal carrier stopped outside the couple’s home as she worked her route Friday afternoon, saying she was shocked to hear of the violence. She had spoken to the couple when she dropped off their mail on Tuesday, she said.


“It was happy. I was like, ‘The weather is nice, hope you’re having a good day,’ ” said the postal worker, who declined to give her name. “Everybody was happy and smiling.”

John R. Ellement can be reached at john.ellement@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @JREbosglobe. Jeremy C. Fox can be reached at jeremy.fox@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @jeremycfox.