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Shots fired in South Boston neighborhood; 19-year-old arrested (UPDATED)

South Boston NewsSouth Boston NewsSouth Boston News
The scene where gunshots were fired on Traver Avenue in South Boston. Bottom, Harvey Johnson Jr., who has been charged in connection with the incident.
SoVaNow.com / March 18, 2019
Police have taken a suspect into custody after multiple shots were fired on Traver Avenue in South Boston Monday morning, damaging at least one parked vehicle and leaving shell casings strewn in the street.

South Boston Police Chief Jim Binner said from the scene that police believe at least two suspects were involved in the shooting, which caused no apparent injuries.

Arrested was Harvey Johnson Jr., a 19-year-old who has been charged with possession of a firearm as a felony offender. He was taken to the Halifax Adult Detention Center where he is being held without bond. Johnson was taken into custody by SBPD Corporal Mitch Bowen. Further charges are anticipated in the investigation, which is continuing.

The shots rang out around 10:50 a.m. and police rushed to the neighborhood after receiving 911 calls from residents. Their initial investigation effort was focused around the intersection of Traver and Irish Street, where the assailants crossed the yard of a homeowner as they fled the scene, knocking over a birdbath. The vehicle that was shot up belongs to the occupant of the home that sits on the corner of Traver and Irish. The car was not occupied when it was struck by bullets.

“We’re still interviewing witnesses to get a better sense of who we’re dealing with,” said Binner from the scene on Monday morning.

Johnson was caught by South Boston officers who responded to Vaughan Street and found the suspect attempting to flee inside a residence. He was raised in the neighborhood.

One of the witnesses who spoke to police is South Boston vice mayor Tina Wyatt Younger, whose house on Irish looks out onto the Traver intersection. Wyatt Younger said she was sitting at home, gazing out a front window, when she saw two young black men tear through a neighbor’s yard across the street and knock over the birdbath. Wyatt Younger said the car that received the bullet hits belongs to the neighbor.

“It’s a very quiet neighborhood,” said Wyatt-Younger. “It’s not something we hear all the time. Not so close to home.

“I’m just looking out the window and heard four shots fired back-to-back,” she continued. It was then that she saw the two men running up Irish Street toward Marshall, which connects with Vaughan a short distance away.

Police brought in a K-9 tracking dog as they continued the search for the second suspect and anyone else who may have been involved in the shooting. There was no immediate sign that any homes had been hit by gunfire, but the investigation is ongoing and Binner said police have interviewed multiple people to gain more information on what happened.

Police placed markers on Traver to indicate where shell casings were recovered. Some half-dozen markers were visible from the street as officers roamed Traver and Irish Street.

This story will be updated.



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I have been aware of Harvey since he was in the 4th grade, then he was just a regular kid. In the fifth grade he changed, he became difficult. Reported concerns to various authorities. For years he became a menace in his local area. I dealt with his parents numerous times. Hope the Courts thoroughly review his history: family, influences, the schools.

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This boy is going to end up spending his life in prison or get killed if something doesn't change. 19 years old and already a felon? Carrying a gun? Where did he steal that from?


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