‘Repeat offenders’: Boston men with history of firearm convictions held without bail, DA says

BOSTON — Two Boston men with a history of firearm convictions are being held without bail following their latest arrests on gun charges during recent traffic stops, the district attorney said.

And Suffolk District Attorney Kevin Hayden on Sunday called the gun-related arrests and arraignments of the two men with “numerous” prior gun convictions a “prime example of a fairly small group of repeat offenders driving the illegal gun possession menace” in Boston.

Hayden’s comments came after two men, one 30 and the other believed to be in his 20s, were shot to death in Boston on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning, respectively. Both cases are under investigation.

“These gun possession arrests are cases where prior convictions and prior incarcerations have apparently done little to dissuade these individuals from repeating the offenses that led them to prison in the first place,” Hayden said in a statement. “These cases also highlight the need for us as a society to recognize the concentration of guns among a core group of individuals—in this case, two repeat offenders—and to find ways to break the cycle, which so often leads to violence and tragedy, as we just witnessed on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning.”

Daniel Larkins, 40, and Jamison Gatson, 27, were both apprehended in unrelated traffic stops. Both have served prison sentences for prior firearm convictions, prosecutors said at their arraignments in Boston Municipal Court in Dorchester.

Larkins was charged with unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, carrying a loaded firearm without a license, second offense; carrying a firearm without a license, fourth offense; possession of ammunition without an FID card, subsequent offense, and firearm violation with three prior violent or drug crimes.

Larkins has been ordered held without bail after Judge Erika Reis found him dangerous on Friday, Hayden said. He is accused of leading police on a high-speed chase on Oct. 8.

At about 1:12 a.m. on Oct. 8, Boston police saw a white 2007 BMW fail to stop at a marked stop line before a crosswalk and make a right turn off Wheatland Avenue onto Washington Street at a high rate of speed. Police then saw the vehicle accelerate to a higher rate of speed down Washington Street, Hayden said. The vehicle was traveling so fast that it took several blocks for police to catch up.

Police stopped the vehicle, which was being driven by Larkins. Police learned that Larkins’s license had been suspended since May and that he had been convicted of previous firearm offenses.

While searching the vehicle, officers found a Jimenez Arms pistol with five .22-caliber rounds in the magazine under the driver’s seat, Hayden said. Officers also found a large quantity of fireworks packaged for commercial sale in the trunk.

Larkins has served two sentences on his previous firearm convictions, one in the Suffolk County House of Correction and one in state prison.

Separately, Gatson was charged with unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, resisting arrest, carrying a firearm without a license, third offense; firearm violation with two prior violent or drug crimes, defacing a firearm, possession of a large capacity firearm, carrying a loaded firearm without a license, possession of ammunition without an FID card, subsequent offense; possession of a defaced firearm, possession of a firearm in felony possession, possession of a stun gun, and possession to distribute a class A substance.

At about 12:07 a.m. on Thursday, Boston police saw a gray Chevrolet Malibu traveling at a high rate of speed on Harvard Street and fail to stop at a stop sign. Officers conducted a traffic stop at the intersection of Blue Hill Avenue and Ellington Street and saw two occupants in the vehicle. The driver, later identified as Gatson, was unable to provide a driver’s license.

Officers observed a small plastic bag containing a white substance in the passenger’s hand and a bulge in Gaston’s sweatshirt. Gatson refused to exit the vehicle and tried to drive off but the vehicle did not start, Hayden said. After a struggle that caused officers to jump into the vehicle to gain control, officers recovered a black and green .45 Caliber Glock 30 with one round in the chamber and 13 rounds in the magazine from Gatson’s sweatshirt pocket.

Officers also located a Taser and a bag containing a glass measuring cup, a box of sandwich bags, and a scale containing what appeared to be cocaine, Hayden said.

The passenger is expected to be charged with possession of a class B substance.

Gatson has previously served a state prison sentence for firearm-related offenses in Worcester County.

“The combination of illegal guns and people more than willing to pull the trigger endanger our neighborhoods, threaten our first responders, impact or end lives too early and leave grief and suffering among the victims and survivors, Hayden said. “We will continue to arrest and arraign and seek appropriate dangerousness hearings and incarcerations, but the solution has to involve more than police, prosecutors and prisons.”

Judge Joseph Griffin ordered Gatson held without bail pending a dangerousness hearing on Oct. 20.

Larkins is due back in court on Nov. 8.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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