Boston Magazine has dubbed Boston to be a “shooter’s paradise” after reports indicate that the city’s Police Department arrested “fewer than 4 percent of gunmen involved in non-fatal shootings” that occurred between the start of 2014 and September 20, 2016. If you do the math that means that more than 96 percent of those involved in non-fatal shootings were never apprehended.
This startling number of non-apprehended fugitives includes the person responsible for shooting 14-year-old Keira Harrison three times as she watched Fourth of July fireworks last summer. It also includes the suspect who shot a seven-year-old on Bowdoin Street. The report confirms that police have not arrested anyone in any of the 19 non-fatal shootings of Boston minors under age 17.
The Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office says it is too difficult to follow through with these types of cases because they generally take place outside, making physical evidence hard to locate and also witnesses usually will not cooperate. They say investigators are at a serious disadvantage. In fact, the arrest rate for fatal shootings is not much better at only 15 percent, leaving 85 percent of the people who committed a murder in Boston from January 2014 through September 20, 2016 not apprehended.
Within that timeframe, there were some 618 shootings, 92 being homicides, yet only 14 shooters were arrested. Of the 526 victims that survived, only 20 shooters were arrested. The total arrest rate had declined from 8 percent in 2014 to 6 percent in 2015.