The most disconcerting thing in Cambridge this week
The most disconcerting thing in Cambridge this week? You think that’d be an easy one — undoubtedly the high-speed chase through Kendall Square, a state trooper shooting at the suspect and an arrest on the T platform as the suspect (according to police reports) tried a final, desperate getaway after crashing his car.
Nope. Not really.
At least not for anyone who wasn’t in Kendall Square at Wednesday afternoon, when all that was going on.
For anyone watching from a distance, it was that reports of the shooting in Kendall showed up on Twitter just as the Cambridge Police sent out a press release about a report of shots fired at 12:30 a.m Saturday in Dana Park — because even though taking a minute to read the release makes it clear there’s no relationship between the two, the synchronicity seems to link them — and there’s also the fact the press release about Dana Park was almost identical to one issued June 7 about shots fired in Hoyt Field the day before at 11 p.m.
Reports of shots fired. No injuries found when police arrive. Shell casings found. No indication the incident is linked to the fatal drive-by shooting on Willow Street the previous week.
Hoyt Field and Dana Park are technically in different neighborhoods, but they’re only about a half-mile apart, walkable in 10 minutes or so, so the main difference in the reports was that the Dana Park shots came after “a heated verbal argument between several individuals.”
Oh, there’s one more difference:
The Hoyt Field press release was issued about 11 hours after the incident it reported on; the Dana Park press release was issued about 112.5 hours after its incident.
“The delay was due to the follow-up effort to determine the possibility that the Dana Park gunshots were linked to the Hoyt Field gunshots,” Cambridge Police spokesman Daniel Riviello said Thursday, and the later press release suggested as such. “Once it was found that the forensic examination would take longer than expected, we decided to share the information we had.”
As of Thursday afternoon, there still was no link established, but police are not ruling out a connection, Riviello said. As to the other thing:
“The timing was clearly unfortunate with the incident that happened in Kendall Square yesterday, but we could not have foreseen that when we issued the alert,” he said.
Okay. That was all kind of disconcerting. But what could really rattle the nerves is simply the realization that there are enough bullets being fired in Cambridge to get confused — four incidents in less than two weeks:
June 3, the Wellington-Harrington drive-by that killed Charlene Holmes, 16, and injured Thanialee Cotto, 17. June 6, a shooting without apparent injury in Hoyt Field, Riverside. Saturday, a shooting without apparent injury in Dana Park, Cambridgeport. And Wednesday, the chase in Kendall Square during which a state trooper shot at a suspect.