Two brothers charged with second-degree murder for stabbing death outside hotel

A Suffolk County grand jury this week indicted two brothers on charges they used a detachable steering wheel and a knife in a brawl outside a party at the DoubleTree Hotel on Mt. Vernon Street that ended with one of their opponents dead of stab wounds.

Shawn Coleman, 22, of the South End, was charged with second-degree murder and was allegedly the attacker who inflicted Christopher Borgella's fatal injuries early on March 1.

His brother, Harold Coleman, 26, of Dorchester, was also indicted for second-degree murder for his role in the brawl, according to the Suffolk County District Attorney's office and Boston Police.

According to prosecutors, the brothers were part of a group attending a party at the hotel, as was another group that included Borgella. After responding several times to noise complaints about the party, hotel management asked everybody to leave, prosecutors say:

"The respective groups went outside and became involved in a physical altercation in the parking lot, where Harold Coleman allegedly used a detachable steering wheel to beat two friends of the victim.

"In the course of the brawl, [Assistant District Attorney Masai] King said, Borgella produced a knife but did not use it on anyone. Prosecutors say he gave the knife to a friend, who later threw it at the defendants' group before he and his own group retreated into a car. Harold Coleman allegedly struck that car with the detachable steering wheel several times, cracking the windshield and shattering the front passenger;s side window.

"Harold Coleman and Shawn Coleman allegedly renewed the attack, and it was during this encounter that Borgella sustained multiple stab wounds that would claim his life at Boston Medical Center. Another victim sustained a stab wound that was not life-threatening; investigators believe he was unarmed at the time.

"In addition to gathering witness statements, investigators recovered a knife from the scene of the incident. Testing by Boston Police criminalists revealed that it contained three DNA profiles - those of Borgella and the surviving victim on the blade, and that of Shawn Coleman on the handle."

At their arraignment today, King asked that the brothers be held without bail. Clerk Magistrate Gary D. Wilson imposed $250,000 cash bail for each defendant, the DA's office reports.



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