Video: Two young Brockton mothers, Boston man shot to death in Dorchester

Maria Papadopoulos

Shante Gaines says she last spoke to her sister, Shacora, by cell phone around 9 p.m. Saturday, and at the time, her sister had planned to stay in with friends.

“She told me she was going to stay home,” Gaines, 23, recalled from their Wilmington Street home Monday afternoon, clutching her sister’s photograph. “She was waiting for my cousin and her friend to get here and they were just going to hang out a little bit.”

Plans soon changed and Shacora Gaines, 20, decided to go to a late-night party in Boston with her friend, Chantal Palmer, 20, of Brockton. 

It would be a rare night out for the two Brockton friends, who were both young mothers and had lived houses away from each other on Brockton’s north side. 

It would also be their last night out, as both young women were gunned down while sitting in a vehicle outside a party on Mount Ida Road in Dorchester early Sunday morning, according to Boston police.

Investigators believe there was an argument before the shooting. Officers responded to 41 Mount Ida Road in Dorchester at 4:07 a.m. Sunday, after receiving a report of shots fired.

There, officers found three people suffering from gunshot wounds: Gaines, Palmer and Anthony Peoples, 19, of Boston. Peoples and Gaines were pronounced dead at the scene. Palmer was taken to Boston Medical Center, where she died of her injuries. 

“Unfortunately, they ran into some trouble, which had nothing to do with them and they lost their lives over it,” Shante Gaines said of her sister and the two other victims.

Born in Boston, Shacora Gaines moved to Brockton about three years ago, her sister said. 

Last week, the young mother celebrated the first birthday of her son, Shakor. She was taking classes at Massasoit Community College and trying to decide on a major, her sister said.

“She was everything,” Gaines said, looking at a photograph on her cell phone of her sister holding her son at the boy’s birthday party. 

“She was always there for her family, her friends. She was loved. She’s missed by everybody,” Gaines said. “I just hope there’s justice. I really do.”

A few houses away on Pleasantview Avenue on Monday, tears welled up in Andrea Simpson’s eyes as she recalled her friend and former neighbor, Chantal Palmer. 

Palmer, a 2007 graduate of Brockton High School who friends say ran cross country and track, had formerly worked as a hostess at Texas Roadhouse in Brockton before giving birth to a son about five months ago, Simpson said.

“If she wasn’t taking care of the baby, then she was out trying to find a new job,” Simpson said. “It was like, the first time she decides to go out, this happens.” 

Palmer’s family could not be reached for comment Monday.

Carrie Simpson, Andrea’s mother, recalled Palmer as a friendly woman who had grown up on Pleasantview Avenue. 

“She never passed you by without saying hello. Very, very respectful,” Simpson, 55, said while pointing to a photo of Palmer and her daughter in a family photo album.

Simpson pointed to Palmer’s former home across the street, still boarded up after a fire destroyed the house in 2007.

On Nov. 24, 2007, Chantal Palmer had called 911 after her family’s home at 16 Pleasantview Ave. caught fire.

Inside the home, family photographs and other items had been destroyed, although no injuries were reported. 

Palmer, then 18, described the two-alarm blaze in an interview outside her damaged home with The Enterprise.

“We smelled smoke. Everybody started coming out. I saw a bunch of flames coming from the attic,” Palmer said at the time while holding her black cat Shadow in her arms. “I was scared and started crying.”

The shootings remain under investigation. Anyone with information is urged to call Boston Police at 617-343-4470 or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-494-TIPS or text ‘TIP’ to CRIME. The Boston Police will protect the identities of those who wish to be anonymous.

Maria Papadopoulos can be reached at