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Discussion Starter · #1 ·

Police identified a 20-year-old man who was shot to death in the Corky Row section of the city Wednesday night as Eric Sullivan.

By Jay Pateakos
GateHouse News Service
Posted Oct 30, 2008 @ 11:20 AM
Last update Oct 30, 2008 @ 07:05 PM

Fall River -

More than three years after four alleged crack dealers were gunned down in the former Larry's Sports Pub in Corky Row, 20-year-old Eric "Roz" Sullivan was shot and killed Wednesday night across the street from the now-boarded-up bar.
Police were called around 9:30 p.m. Wednesday to the area of Fifth and Morgan streets, where they found Sullivan with a single gunshot wound that witnesses said was in the area of his abdomen. Sullivan, of 411 Fourth St., was found afterward inside the hallway of 263 Morgan St. He was transported to Rhode Island Hospital and subsequently died. His death marks the third homicide in the city this year.
Sullivan's foster sister, Kendra Anderson, said police had already been to her home throughout Thursday morning and the family, who helped raise Sullivan since he was 15, were in shock. Anderson said they were his only family and that Sullivan's biological mother was dead and his father was in jail.
"He was a good kid. He had a job at Comcast. He had his own apartment and he always paid his bills on time. I saw him just yesterday driving up Rodman Street and he said, 'Take it easy Kendra,'" she said. "He was going to be 21 in December, and he was looking forward to it."
His birthday plans were already under way to rent a bar so that everyone would be together to celebrate.
Yhonna Barnes, a resident of Fifth Street, said she heard the gun go off Wednesday and mistook it for someone breaking glass outside, as if someone broke into a car. After being shot, Barnes said, Sullivan was seen banging on a number of doors along Fifth Street before he ended up in the hallway at 263 Morgan St.
"This was a jealousy shooting. It wasn't a robbery," said Barnes.
Witnesses said Sullivan's cell phone and a bag of marijuana were found at the scene, but no blood, which in not uncommon with abdominal wounds.
"When the ambulance came and he was put in the stretcher, his arms just fell down, and I believe he died right there," Barnes added
She admitted that her neighborhood doesn't have the best reputation, but said things have been very quiet there for the many months leading up to this shooting.
"I was surprised when the summer came and went and there were no shootings," Barnes said.
Sullivan had a lengthy rap sheet in Fall River District Court, including possession of Class D drug, resisting arrest, vandalizing property, armed assault to murder, receiving a stolen motor vehicle and possession of alcohol by a minor, but most of the charges were dismissed, according to court records. Sullivan did serve one six-month term in the Bristol County House of Correction for a conviction on a third possession charge.
Valerie Strollo, a friend of Sullivan, said acquaintances doubted he was involved in any gang-type activity but were not certain. He had a good job and many friends, she said.
"This is a shame, something so cowardly, and it's getting to the point that people can't go outside without being shot," said Strollo. "He was the kind of person that could make everyone laugh no matter how bad of a mood you are in. He came through for people. I hope they catch whoever did this, and that it's not another Fall River unsolved homicide. I don't want someone to think it's OK to take the life of a 20-year-old for nothing."
None of his friends or family members knew what he was doing near Larry's Sports Bar Wednesday night.
Sullivan's foster mother, Donna Anderson, said what Sullivan may have lacked in the common-sense category, he made up for in pure intellect and kindness.
"The boy was genius, a highly intelligent person. I am a former English teacher, and Eric wrote a book that could have easily been published. He was a respectful person and only asked people to respect him back," his foster mother said. "He always had his private side that nobody knew about, but he was always friendly and respectful."
"He always talked to me about doing the right thing," said Sullivan's younger foster sister, Kelsey, fighting back tears. "He told me the other day that I knew him better than he knew himself. We had a very strong brother/sister relationship."
Donna Anderson, 56, grew up in Corky Row and remembers when life there was different.
"That was the cleanest, most decent neighborhood in the city, where you never heard of guns or knives. And nothing went on like what is going on today," she said. "When you got in trouble in that neighborhood, and you were seven homes away from your house, all the adults would be outside telling you were in trouble before you got home."
Although detectives spent considerable time at the Anderson home and confirmed Sullivan's death, many of his family and friends were still in shock throughout the day Thursday, expecting him to drive up any minute.
"Until I see him in the casket, I just can't believe he's gone," said Kendra Anderson.
Police continue to search for the shooter. Anyone with information regarding the homicide is urged to contact Fall River Police at 508-676-8511, call the district attorney's tip line at 1-866-SOLVE-07 or e-mail [email protected].

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Woman held on obstruction charge connected to homicide

By Will Richmond
Herald News Staff Reporter
Posted Nov 03, 2008 @ 10:06 PM
Last update Nov 03, 2008 @ 11:12 PM

Fall River -
A woman accused of misleading police investigating the murder of Eric Sullivan will need to post $10,000 in cash to regain her freedom.
District Court Judge Toby S. Mooney imposed bail after Brianna M. Gatta, 18, of 187 Rock St., fourth floor, appeared in court Monday to be arraigned on a single charge of misleading police with the intent to obstruct or delay.
Assistant District Attorney Jack Stapleton had requested bail be set at $15,000, while William Tenczar, Gatta's court appointed attorney for the bail hearing, asked for Gatta to be released on personal recognizance.
Gatta indicated to the court that she would seek to hire her own attorney.
After Mooney set Gatta's bail, a woman identified to the court as Gatta's mother and two other men immediately left the courtroom. The mother then returned sticking her head in the courtroom's door and shouted, "You've got the wrong person. They grabbed him last night and let him go yesterday. He's in Boston now."
Sullivan, 20, of 411 Fourth St., was shot outside 270 Fifth St. around 9:40 p.m. on Oct. 29 and managed to make it inside 263 Morgan St. before collapsing. Gatta is the first person to be charged in connection with Sullivan's murder.
According to a police report, investigators obtained a list of all incoming and outgoing calls from Sullivan's phone from before and after his death.
Police were able to track each of the numbers to Sullivan's family, friends or coworkers except for one number. Police subsequently traced that number to Gatta and determined 10 calls were made from Gatta's phone to Sullivan's between 7 p.m. and 9:18 p.m., the police report said.
During the investigation, police also learned Gatta may be in the company of a Elijah Judge, who police allege is a known drug dealer who could be in possession of a firearm, according to the report.
Police then went to Gatta's apartment on Friday and searched the residence after getting consent from Gatta. During the search, police reported finding court documents containing Judge's name, men's clothing, a photo of Judge and other documents related to him, police said.
Gatta was then taken to the Fall River Police Department for questioning.
At the station, she informed police the phone number did belong to her, but she had not used it in some time, as the minutes had run out, the report said.
After initially denying she even knew Judge, Gatta also admitted to police she had a former relationship with Judge but that it had ended. Under further questioning, Gatta admitted the clothes belonged to Judge and denied having any knowledge of Sullivan's death, according to police.
She later said she allowed an unknown group of teenagers to use her phone one night to arrange for a ride, but when asked about the multiple phone calls, she could not provide an explanation. She also stated that she did not allow Judge to use her phone on the night of Sullivan's death, the police report said.
Police told Gatta that neighbors had reported seeing a man meeting Judge's description leave Gatta's home earlier that day. Gatta continued to deny having any knowledge of Judge's whereabouts, according to the report.
After the interview, police placed Gatta under arrest and held her in a cell until a clerk magistrate appeared and released Gatta on her own recognizance.
Bristol County District Attorney Sam Sutter said he is pleased with Mooney's bail decision.
"It seems evident that she (Mooney) sees the charge as seriously as we do at the District Attorney's Office," Sutter said.
The first-term district attorney did make note of his displeasure that Gatta was released on bail by a clerk magistrate during the weekend, saying the seriousness of the charge should have had Gatta behind bars until a judge could make the bail decision.
"I'm very disappointed with the clerk magistrate's decision to release on personal recognizance," Sutter said. "The decision that was made is an overwhelmingly poor decision and defeats the purpose of what we are trying to do. When a clerk makes a decision like this, it is a serious mistake."

· MassCops Angel
121,617 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Arrest related to homicide case

By Will Richmond
Herald News Staff Reporter
Posted Dec 03, 2008 @ 09:09 PM

Fall River -

A second person has been arrested for allegedly misleading police in their investigation into the October homicide of Eric Sullivan.
Elijah Judge, 21, of 25 Withington St., Boston, was apprehended by a joint State Police/Boston Police gang unit at approximately 1:15 a.m. Wednesday after a warrant was issued for his arrest on a charge of misleading police with intent to obstruct or delay.
Bristol County District Attorney's office spokesman Gregg Miliote said he could not comment on the potential for further charges against Judge.
Judge is facing the same charge that landed Brianna Gatta in jail, after police said she misled their investigation into Sullivan's death by lying about her relationship with Judge, despite the presence of clothing and court documents found in Gatta's bedroom. Bristol County Sheriff's Department spokesman Bernard Sullivan Wednesday said Gatta remains in custody.
Like Gatta, District Court Judge Gilbert Nadeau ordered Judge be held on $10,000, however, Judge was awaiting trial on a Brockton charge of trafficking 14 grams or more of cocaine, which caused Nadeau to revoke Judge's bail on that charge.
Sullivan, 20, suffering from a single gunshot to the abdomen, was found inside a Morgan Street apartment on the night of Oct. 29. He was transported to Rhode Island Hospital and subsequently died. It was the city's third homicide of the year.
According to a police report on Judge's arrest, two state police officers first confronted Judge on Nov. 5 after learning he would be in a Brockton Superior Courthouse to appear on the drug trafficking case.
After locating Judge, police said they asked if he would be willing to voluntarily speak with them about a Fall River case.
Agreeing to do so after his case was done for the day, the two officers brought Judge to a basement office in the court and questioned him about his relationship with Gatta and his background.
Judge proceeded to tell police that he was not dating Gatta, saying he hadn't seen her in a couple of months but that her parents contacted him following her arrest. The officers then proceeded to ask Judge if he was familiar with three street names, but he indicated only knowing one as a guy from Boston.
Judge also told police that "he is a Boston guy, but that his brother Shane, and sister, Helena, live in Fall River."
Both Shane and Helena Judge were victims in a 2005 shooting at the former Larry's Sports Pub, located on Morgan Street across the street from where Sullivan's body was found.
The police report also describes an interview done with a friend of Gatta's, Saleemha Winters.
Notes from the interview indicate Gatta and Winters had become close friends years ago and Winters knew Gatta and Judge had dated. She told police that during the relationship she found Gatta to be scared of and manipulated by Judge, noting an incident when Judge pulled a gun on Gatta during an argument.
Winters proceeded to tell police that during the past year Gatta had indicated that she was selling crack for Judge and that she would hold the drugs during delivery or while Judge was out of town.
Winters also indicated she talked to Gatta on the night of Sullivan's death, including one conversation where Gatta indicated she was going to make a sale that night.
Winters and Gatta next talked around 11 p.m. that night when Winters watched a television news report about a shooting in Fall River and advised Gatta to turn on the television.
Winters then told police she knew Judge was a "stick up" guy who would rob people in Fall River and Boston, who would retreat to either city to hide out.
Police also indicated in their report that several phone calls were either made from or received by Gatta's cell phone on the night of Sullivan's death, including a call from Sullivan at 9:11 p.m. and an outgoing call that resulted in a message left by Judge on another person's cell phone.
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