Three arraigned in Stoughton shooting tied to puppy theft

Maureen Boyle

Rescue workers found the 29-year-old man on the ground behind a Route 27 home, tightening a belt around his calf as a tourniquet to stem the bleeding from a gunshot wound.

Another man, who also had been shot, sped off minutes earlier toward Good Samaritan Medical Center, about 2 1/2 miles away in Brockton, to get treatment for his injuries.

The two had been shot Wednesday night, police would later be told, by men who stole two pit bull-mix puppies that were being sold privately by the victims.

A third puppy was left behind after the incident in the driveway of the two-family house at 380 Park St. (Route 27).

Brockton police caught the suspects, who had sped off after the shooting, following a brief pursuit Wednesday night. But not before, according to police reports, they tried to run down an officer who then opened fire on the vehicle.

No injuries were reported in the arrest, and the puppies were recovered.

It was not immediately clear if the victims and suspects knew each other or how the sale of the puppies had been arranged.

Eduardo Fontes, 22, of 20 Jacqueline St., Plymouth; John Centeio Silva, 19, of 135 Nelson St., Brockton; and Vanderlee Fernandes, 23, of 38 Vega Ave., Brockton, were arraigned Thursday in Stoughton District Court on charges of armed robbery, possession of a firearm without a license, discharging a firearm within 500 feet of a dwelling, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, assault with intent to murder and receiving stolen property and conspiracy to commit a crime.

Fernandes is being held on $500,000 cash bail. Silva, who has a tattoo reading “Thug Life” on his left shoulder, was held on $250,000 bail. Fontes was ordered held in lieu of $175,000 cash bail.

All three, according to court papers, have criminal records. Silva was already on probation and out on bail on charges of assault and threats to commit a crime. Fernandes was also on probation.

The three were arrested after Brockton officers Robert Smith and Scott Landry spotted the suspects’ vehicle shortly after Stoughton police broadcast a description furnished by a motorist who heard gunfire and saw the car speed off, according to police reports and court paperwork.

At one point, Smith pulled in front of the vehicle near Boylston Street in Brockton, forcing it to stop. When Landry got out of the cruiser, he heard the motor racing as the car backed up quickly and sped off on Spring Street toward Belmont Street, the reports said.

That’s when the suspects’ vehicle skidded to a stop to avoid a cruiser driven by officer James Sniger and then peeled off toward Smith and Landry, who were standing in the street 20 yards away, police said.

The car crossed over the center line and into the path of Smith, who fired three rounds, hitting the driver’s-side fender near the door. The car veered away from Smith, jumped a curb and drove off, police said.

Officers William Carpenter and Domingos Nunes joined Sniger in the pursuit and caught the suspects, who drove into several trees in a Linwood Park yard in Brockton.

Acting Stoughton Police Chief Thomas Murphy said Stoughton police received a call at 8:39 p.m. Wednesday about a shooting in the area of 380 Park St.

When officers arrived, they found the 29-year-old man who had been shot in the leg and learned a 23-year-old man who had been shot in the abdominal area had been driven or drove himself to Good Samaritan Medical Center.

A witness provided police with the license plate number of the suspects’ getaway vehicle, and the information was broadcast to police in neighboring communities, he said.

The two victims were recovering from their wounds, Murphy said. Authorities said they are not releasing their names at this time.

One neighbor, who didn’t want to be identified, heard gunshots and later saw one of the victims being worked on by rescue workers.

An adult pit bull was seen in the backyard of the house Thursday. Further details on dog sales at the house were not available Thursday.

Enterprise writer Maureen Boyle can be reached at mboyle@enterprisenews.com.