Stoughton high school student identified as victim in fatal Mattapan shooting

Stoughton high school student identified as victim in fatal Mattapan shooting

Two of the individuals involved in a recent surge of gun violence in Boston, following Independence Day celebrations, were students from Stoughton Public Schools. Tragically, one of them succumbed to his injuries. The school district announced on Saturday that Christian Cousins, a rising senior in Stoughton High School’s class of 2025, was fatally shot while in Mattapan with another SHS student, who also sustained injuries but survived.

The school district expressed their sorrow in a Facebook post, stating, “It is never easy to deal with the loss of a student, especially under these circumstances. Our thoughts are with Christian’s family, friends, and teachers, as well as the whole Stoughton High community. We are also keeping the other SHS student and their family and friends in our thoughts.” The school has activated its Crisis Team to meet with the community and provide information on available support options.

The incident occurred while Cousins and the unidentified female student were sitting in a car near Gladeside Avenue and Donwood Terrace. Boston Police Superintendent Felipe Colon mentioned that the day following Independence Day was particularly active, with multiple shootings reported in Mattapan, Roxbury, the South End, and Dorchester. Colon emphasized that the Mattapan shooting did not appear to be a random attack.

The first shooting of the day was reported at 1:26 a.m. at 297 Centre St. in Jamaica Plain, where three adults were found with non-life-threatening gunshot wounds. Minutes later, at 1:33 a.m., another shooting occurred at 618 Shawmut Ave. in Roxbury, resulting in the death of a man who later succumbed to his injuries at a hospital. At 5:18 a.m., police responded to another shooting at 783 Blue Hill Ave. in Dorchester, where a victim was transported to a hospital with life-threatening injuries.

Suffolk District Attorney Kevin Hayden issued a statement on Friday night, urging community involvement in light of the recent violence. “After the violence we saw on Friday, we need community involvement more than ever. We didn’t declare victory during the dip in shootings and homicides in Boston, and we won’t declare defeat during a spike. What we will do is focus ever harder on what works: smart policing, effective prosecutions, and deep community involvement,” Hayden wrote. He encouraged anyone with information about these incidents to contact the police.

The Boston Police Department is asking anyone with information regarding the Mattapan shooting to contact detectives at 617-343-4470. Anonymous tips can be submitted to the CrimeStoppers Tip Line at 1-800-494-TIPS (8477) or by texting the word “TIP” to CRIME (27463).

Christian Cousins was identified by his family as one of the victims in Friday’s spate of violence. In a statement provided to the Globe, Cousins’ family expressed their grief, saying, “We have lost our beloved Christian Cousins. Deeply loved by his family, he was someone very special to us. He loved to travel, exploring many countries with his family, and he was well-cultured with a deep appreciation for life.”

The Stoughton Public School District first identified Cousins in an email to parents on Saturday. The district also mentioned that a second Stoughton student was shot in the same incident but is expected to survive. The district did not identify the female student but assured that they are keeping her family and friends in their thoughts.

The two Stoughton students were among seven people shot in Boston within a 12-hour span on Friday. The sudden outbreak of violence shocked a city that had seen relatively low numbers of shootings and homicides in the first half of the year. Details of each incident remained scarce on Saturday, and no arrests had been made.

The two students were shot near Donwood Terrace at Gladeside Avenue shortly before 12:30 p.m. on Friday. Officers found them in a vehicle suffering from gunshot wounds. Boston Police Superintendent Felipe Colon stated that the shooting did not appear to be random. Police did not identify either victim at the time.

Earlier on Friday, police responded to three separate shooting incidents, including one around 1:30 a.m. at 618 Shawmut Ave. in Roxbury, where Warren Julien, 40, of Jamaica Plain, was found suffering from gunshot wounds. Julien was taken to a local hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

The killings on Friday marked the fifth and sixth homicides in the city this year. Prior to Friday, the last homicide occurred on May 31 when a 27-year-old Taunton woman, Pereshah Shear-Yashub, was shot and killed in Dorchester. Fatal shootings have significantly decreased in the city this year compared to last, with 15 shooting deaths reported in Boston as of this time in 2023.

In their statement, Cousins’ family highlighted his love for basketball, his participation in AAU leagues, and his passion for entrepreneurship and cars. Cousins had recently received his Car Wrap Technician certification, allowing him to start a business with a close friend. He and his brother also ran a successful car rental business on a website called Turo in California, where Cousins planned to live after graduation and grow the business.

“Being a gentle soul, Christian freely extended love to his family and his close-knit circle of friends,” Cousins’ family said. “Christian had an amazing future ahead of him. This senseless act of violence has deprived us of the opportunity to watch this young man achieve his full potential.”

Source: The Boston Globe, WCVB, Boston Police Department

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