Lynn man sentenced to 15 years for shooting spree outside an East Boston restaurant

The Lynn man who went on a shooting rampage on Thanksgiving morning back in 2008 outside an East Boston restaurant was sentenced to at least 15 years in prison this week. The shooting seriously injuring three people and left one with permanent brain damage.

Ramon Altagracia, 31, who was living as Holvin Cruz, at the time of the incident, was convicted of all charges following his trial on three counts of armed assault with intent to murder, two counts of aggravated assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and a variety of firearms offenses.

Assistant District Attorney Holly Broadbent had recommended terms of 15 to 18 years in state prison on the lead charges plus an additional five to seven years for possessing a firearm during the commission of a felony. Suffolk Superior Court Judge Raymond Brassard sentenced Altagracia to those terms but ordered them to run concurrent with one another rather than consecutively.

“Without any warning at all, this man shot his victims again and again and again,” said District Attorney Daniel Conley said. “It wasn’t in the heat of passion or during sudden combat. It was an ambush and nothing less.”

At trial, Broadbent showed that Altagracia and some of the victims had been involved in a verbal altercation that escalated to a bar fight at the Cosmopolitan Lounge in East Boston on November 3, 2008. That incident was not reported to police, and no one was seriously injured. The victims’ father later contacted Altagracia to apologize for the group’s behavior that night.

About three weeks later the victims and members of their family spent the night before Thanksgiving at another nightclub, where they encountered Altagracia again. Though the people involved in the earlier altercation had no contact with Altagracia that night, their father did shake hands with him during a brief conversation.

Later, in the early morning hours of November 27, the group of eight men and women walked to their car on Bremen Street. Without warning, Altagracia opened fire with a 9mm handgun. One woman and her brother suffered superficial injuries; another brother, then 20, was shot in the chest and arm; and a 35-year-old cousin was shot in the face.

The latter victim lost an eye and suffered permanent brain damage as a result of his injuries.

Boston Police already in the area heard gunshots and responded to the scene. After obtaining a description of the gunman and his vehicle, officers stopped Altagracia minutes later on Summer Street. Inside the Honda Accord, officers found shell casings consistent with the rounds recovered at the shooting scene.

Altagracia was represented by attorney Tonomey Coleman.

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