Use this search box to find articles that have run in our newspapers over the last several years.

Scott asks for community's help in solving third murder of the year

Date: 10/13/2009

By G. Michael Dobbs

Managing Editor

HOLYOKE -- Police Chief Anthony Scott is hoping the public will share information with police to helps solve the city's third murder this year.

On Oct. 7, police found Raymond Diaz Jr. of Springfield at 550 South Bridge St. He had been shot approximately eight times.

Preliminary information indicated that Diaz had been lured to the location as part of a drug transaction.

Diaz had been arraigned 13 times in Springfield, Holyoke and Northampton District Courts on charges that included possession with intent to distribute phencyclidine; operating a car with a suspended license; possession of a controlled substance near a school; illegal possession of electronic weapon -- a stun gun; illegal possession of a dangerous weapon -- a hand gun; assault with a dangerous weapon -- a hand gun; breaking and entering; and larceny from a building.

The Holyoke Police Department and the state police are investigating the homicide jointly.

"Unfortunately this is the city's third homicide of the year and we are working diligently to identify the perpetrator or perpetrators. We have video evidence that there were 25 to 50 people in the street where the shooting occurred an everyone we interviewed so far reported they did not see anything," Scott said.

Scott recommended that people with information use the Text-A-Tip service. Text-A-Tip allows residents to share information completely anon-ymously. If residents in Holyoke see something suspicious they can text to 274637. Starting a message with the world "solve," they can then send their information.

The text message goes to a server in Canada, which then encrypts it so it is completely anonymous. The Hampden County Sheriff's Department takes the encrypted message and sends it to the proper law enforcement unit. The Sheriff's Department personnel can conduct a two-way message with the resident, who remains anonymous, before it sends it to the participating departments. That department only sees the encrypted alias assigned to the message.

"We are asking the residents to please help us to help them to remove these criminals from their neighborhood," Scott said.