Triple Shooting Rocks Sea Street Neighborhood
By: James Kinsella
Police are investigating a triple shooting last Saturday on Nautical Road—the second such shooting in Hyannis in two months.
Of the three victims, one was critically wounded, although doctors expect him to survive.
Now a neighborhood meeting has been called to discuss how to increase safety on Nautical Road and nearby streets.
The gathering, titled "A Neighborhood Meeting With Chief Paul MacDonald and the Barnstable Police," is scheduled for 6:45 PM on Monday at the police station on Phinney's Lane in Hyannis.
"Are you concerned about the recent gun activity on Nautical Road?" a flyer about the meeting asks. "Enough is enough. Let's find out how we can work together to provide a safer community for our children. See you there!"
The flyer was written by Jennifer Cullum, a neighborhood resident who owns and operates the Sea Street Market, a short distance from where the shooting occurred.
"We're a default crime neighborhood," Ms. Cullum said Tuesday. "People know they can come here and get away with it."
Ms. Cullum, who has owned and operated the market for the past four and one-half years, said most people in the neighborhood, which includes Sea Street and nearby short residential streets such as Nautical Road, Murray Way and Seabrook Road, are decent and hard-working.
But she said a small, transient element has used the neighborhood as a place to sell drugs.
"We just have to reclaim the community and give it back to the people who care," Ms. Cullum said.
Saturday's triple shooting was the latest incident to focus wider attention on the neighborhood, previously identified as a criminal "hot spot" by the Barnstable police.
In the shooting, one man, Nicholas J. Mullins, 23, of Hyannis received multiple gunshot wounds in the legs, torso and shoulder. He was listed in critical condition earlier this week at Boston Medical Center.
Of the other two victims, Randall B. Newell 3rd, 22, of Yarmouth, was shot in the foot and Amir A. Beyah, 21, of Hyannis, was shot in the lower leg.
Hyannis Fire-Rescue transported Mr. Mullins and Mr. Beyah to Cape Cod Hospital in Hyannis. Mr. Mullins was transferred to Boston Medical Center. Both Mr. Beyah and Mr. Newell, who also wound up at Cape Cod Hospital, were treated and released, according to Barnstable police.
Police are asking the public's help in identifying the suspect or suspects in the case, as well as the motive for the shooting.
Investigators are exploring the link between the three victims, all of whom are known to local law enforcement (Mr. Beyah is facing an indictment in Barnstable Superior Court on drug charges), as well as why they were in the Nautical Road area.
Barnstable police also said the Nautical Road shooting does not appear linked to the previous triple shooting in Hyannis, which occurred outside Pufferbellies nightclub in the early morning of September 5. No individuals yet have been charged in that case.
Barnstable Detective Sergeant John Murphy said police believe Mr. Mullins was the intended target. Police have been waiting for his medical condition to improve before questioning him.
Det. Sgt. Murphy said Wednesday the police had no suspects or a motive for the shooting, although they were following up a number of solid leads. He also said it was too early to say whether the shooting was an outcome of a narcotics business disagreement, although one possible scenario for the violence was, “for lack of a better word, a turf battle.” Police do not see the Nautical Road shooting as retaliation in any way for the Pufferbellies shooting.
The Nautical Road incident occurred shortly after midnight last Saturday.
At 12:29 AM, several 911 calls about a disturbance on Nautical Road involving numerous gunshots sent Barnstable police to the street, according to a statement from the department.
Police found two of the victims, Mr. Mullins and Mr. Newell, outside 76 Nautical Road. The initial on-scene investigation led police to search for a vehicle that had fled the scene following the shooting.
Barnstable Police Patrolman Brendan Burchell found and stopped the vehicle on Sea Street. Four adult males were inside, including the third victim, Mr. Beyah.
Barnstable police said early indications are that the suspect or suspects and the victims knew each other.
"This was not a random 'drive-by' shooting," Barnstable police said in the statement.
Police said the incident is similar to the September 5 triple shooting. Both shootings occurred early in the morning and appear not to be random.
In the Pufferbellies incident, police said they believe a group of individuals were waiting for a Plymouth man, Rasharn J. Lynch, to come out of the nightclub. When Mr. Lynch and other nightclub patrons came out of Pufferbellies at closing time, a gunman opened fire, hitting Mr. Lynch, who was near the exit, and two other patrons, who were about 90 feet away in the parking lot. All three individuals were treated at hospitals for their wounds and released.
Barnstable police have said Mr. Lynch is not cooperating with their investigation.
At Nautical Road, police investigators found numerous spent shell casings and a small quantity of narcotics at the shooting scene. Among the investigators working the crime scene were Barnstable police detectives, state police detectives assigned to the Cape and Islands District Attorney's Office, and personnel from the state police crime scene services and Barnstable Sheriff's Department Bureau of Criminal Investigation.
Investigators are conducting interviews in hopes of identifying the intended target and motive of the shooting.
Nautical Road is a short residential street off Sea Street. The area was included among several Hyannis locations in a crime sweep conducted in May by the Barnstable police because of violence and drug-dealing.
In January, Barnstable police executed a search warrant at a house at 55 Nautical Road. They said they found drugs and guns in the house. The search led to the indictment of two brothers, Denzel and Kenneth Chisholm, on weapons and drug distribution charges. The Chisholm cases are pending in Barnstable Superior Court. Police said the Chisholm family no longer lives at the address.
Following Saturday’s shooting, the Barnstable police moved their mobile command post to the neighborhood, just as they did in the Hiramar/Fresh Holes Road neighborhood a couple of years ago following an outbreak of gunshots on and near those streets. The post was parked earlier this week on Sea Street next to the Oak Grove Cemetery. Chief MacDonald said the department also was creating a new patrol sector just for the neighborhood.
What: A Neighborhood Meeting With Police Chief Paul MacDonald
When: Monday, 6:45 PM
Where: Barnstable Police Station, Phinney's Lane, Hyannis
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