One dead in shooting near Copley Square

A man was shot Thursday night near Copley Square in the Back Bay, startling passersby who stopped to stare at the crime scene on one of Boston’s most iconic and frequently visited stretches.

The shooting occurred just before 11:10 p.m. on the 500 block of Boylston Street, steps from a large water fountain and in the shadow of the historic Trinity Church.

Boston police Superintendent William Gross said at the scene that the unidentified victim, believed to be in his late 20s or 30s, was shot in the chest.


Officers found him lying in the middle of the street, and he was taken to Boston Medical Center, where he was listed in serious condition early Friday, Gross said.

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He said a suspect, described as a black male wearing a blue Hawaiian shirt, was seen fleeing Boylston Street toward Clarendon Street.

No arrests have been made, but police officers are planning to search local businesses and apartment complexes to look for possible video surveillance footage, Gross said.

A number of uniformed officers, detectives, and at least one K-9 unit scoured the area for evidence and appeared to focus much of their search on benches near the water fountain and on a black compact car with a flat tire parked at the scene.

A cyclist who appeared to have had a lengthy conversation with police officials declined to comment.


Several people fanning out of nearby establishments were stunned to learn that a shooting had occurred in the area.

“It’s really shocking,” said Maria Birnke, 24, who was staying at a nearby hotel on vacation from Sweden.

Her friend, Emmy Tjellmander, 23, was equally taken aback and said shootings are rare in their native country.

“It doesn’t happen at home,” she said.

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Travis Andersen can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.