LAWRENCE — An 18-year-old Lowell man was shot and killed outside a house party on Broadway early yesterday morning — the second murder this year in the city.
Police said Richard Bonilla, 653 Broadway, Apt. 2, Lowell, was shot in the head about 1 a.m. Sunday. He was flown to a Boston hospital, but succumbed to his injuries late yesterday afternoon.
The victim’s cousin, Benito Rivera, told police he and Bonilla where at the house party at 400 Broadway when three females showed up but were refused access to the home, sparking an argument outside between the women and homeowners, according to a police report by Detective Brian Voisine.
The argument escalated to a fist fight and eventually shots were fired, the police report said. Rivera told police he ducked behind a car and could only tell police the shooter was wearing black, the report said.
Police Chief John Romero declined to speculate about a motive or whether the shooting was related to gang activity. Romero said police have some leads, but no arrests have been made.
Lawrence police detectives along with state troopers assigned to District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett’s office are investigating, the chief said.
The city’s first murder this year was in September, when Martin Angelone Butt, 27, was shot in the head and chest near 121 Union St. Two people, Jose “Junior” Rivera, 32, of Lawrence and Albert “Gordo” Vasquez, 18, of Methuen, have been charged with killing Butt as retribution for a previous heroin robbery.