The city was shocked and rocked to the core last Saturday morning after learning of two tragic fatal shootings in the nighttime hours – with many particularly bothered by a shooting that involved an innocent mother getting hit by a stray bullet as she looked out the window of her Shawmut Street apartment at an escalating disturbance between youths on the street.
Katerin “Catherine” Gomez, 35, of Shawmut Street, was killed just after midnight Saturday morning when she heard a disturbance outside and looked out the window, only to be struck by a stray bullet that tragically hit her square.
She died at the scene and had children in the apartment.
State Police and Chelsea Police moved quickly on the outrageous case and arrested Hector Ramires, 21 (his birthday is today, Oct. 23), of Chelsea, and he has been arraigned for murder charges. Not unexpectedly, Ramires had two open cases for street robberies in Chelsea Court and his bail was revoked on those cases, resulting in him being held without bail.
Police said they are confident that Gomez was not the intended target.
Rather, they believe that Ramires and another group were in an altercation on the street. Ramires is alleged to have turned that incident into a shooting incident, pulling out a handgun and firing at the second group involved in the disturbance. When firing, one of those rounds is believed to have errantly entered Gomez’s Shawmut Street home and hit her as she looked out the window to see the disturbance.
Police quickly put out a quality image of Ramires and another man from a nearby surveillance camera. That image, along with witness accounts, led to the quick identification of Ramires as the alleged shooter.
He will return to court on Nov. 20, but will not be able to make bail in the interim.
Meanwhile, just a little over an hour later, at 1:20 a.m. on Saturday morning inside the French Club, Juan Rodriguez, 36, of Lynn, was shot and killed during an altercation. Rodriguez, who has six children, is believed to have been shot by Antonio Rivera, 23, of Chelsea, when an argument inside the Club erupted into gunfire.
Rodriguez was shot and died later of his injuries at Mass General Some sources indicated that the two might have been related, and that the family had recently had a funeral for an elderly member of the family.
An all-out manhunt had been on for Rivera since Monday night, but that ended late Wednesday afternoon when he surrendered at the Chelsea Police Station. He is charged now with murder and illegal possession of a firearm. He is expected to be arraigned in Chelsea District Court today, Oct. 23.
“Both Chief Kyes and I have been in constant contact with each other and with leaders in our community. There is a universal condemnation of the actions, sympathy for the victims and a desire to do even more to make sure such tragedies don’t happen again,” said City Manager Jay Ash this week, in speaking about both murders.
Anyone with information may contact Chelsea Police detectives at 617-466-4843 or the Suffolk County State Police Detective Unit at 617-727-8817. Tipsters who wish to remain anonymous may also call the Chelsea Police CrimeStoppers tip line at 617-466-4880, text the word CHELSEA and their information to TIP411 (847411), or submit information online at www.ChelseaPolice.com.