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Cop suspended in shooting
By Michele McPhee
Thursday, February 3, 2005

A Boston police officer was suspended for driving the getaway car after his cousin allegedly gunned down a reputed gang leader outside a Randolph nightclub, sources said.

Baltazar Darosa, 26, a two-year veteran assigned to District C-11 in Dorchester, was placed on administrative duty Monday ``pending the outcome of an Internal Affairs investigation,'' said Boston police spokesman Lt. Kevin Foley.

Darosa's cousin, Carlos Depina, 25, remains at large four days after he allegedly opened fire outside Copa Grande Oasis as revelers left the club early Sunday.

His target, Jose (Joseph) Lopes, 23, was shot in the chest and died a short time later.

It was unclear what Darosa's role in the slaying was; witnesses saw him behind the wheel of the car with Depina next to him after the shooting, several law enforcement sources said.

Boston police brass referred questions about Darosa's alleged actions to Norfolk District Attorney William Keating yesterday. Keating's spokesman, David Traub, declined to comment on the accusation against the Boston police officer.

``There is an arrest warrant out for a single individual, Carlos Depina, and we continue to actively seek his apprehension,'' Traub said. ``The investigation into this killing continues. We urge anyone with information on Depina's whereabouts to contact police, for his safety and for the public's safety.''

The accusation against Depina stunned his hard-working Cape Verdean family and fellow community activists in Dorchester, who said the 25-year-old had steadfastly fought against the violence that claimed the life of his older brother.

Nathaniel Depina, 24, was shot in the head by masked gunmen who ambushed his car as he and his girlfriend, Nikki Amado, left a family barbecue June 7, 2003.

After the slaying, Amado, now 26, turned to her boyfriend's family to help overcome the horror of watching him die as she sat less than a foot away from him. Amado got the the most comfort from ``Nate's little brother, Carlos,'' she said yesterday.

``He was dealing with it. He never talked about revenge. I just had a talk with him right before this happened, about how he regrets some of the things he did when he was younger, because now he can't get a job,'' she said. ``I can't believe a few days later he would go and shoot someone.''

Darosa, who was often proudly introduced by his cousins as a Boston police officer, was also a familiar face at family parties, Amado said. Because the incident occurred off-duty, Darosa is not represented by a Patrolmen's Benevolent Association attorney and he could not be reached for comment.

``He is very quiet, very polite,'' she said. ``It's terrible now that he's in trouble too because of this.''
 
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