2 Men Sentenced To Life In Prison In Fatal Caribbean Festival Shooting

BOSTON (WBZ-AM) -- Relatives of a young woman shot and killed during the 2014 Caribbean Festival parade gave emotional victim impact statements Monday morning, before the two men charged in her death faced sentencing.

Wesson Colas, 25, and Keith Williams, 21, were convicted of first degree murder of Dawnn Jaffier, 26, a city youth worker and innocent bystander who was watching the parade.

"This case was a devastating blow to the city, because Dawnn Jaffier was a shining light in our city," Suffolk DA Dan Conley told reporters after the sentencing. "A mentor, a great example of what it means to be a young, contributing member of our city."

Ian Jaffier, Dawnn's father, addressed the court before Colas and Williams were sentenced.

"These defendants have robbed me of the opportunity of being a father of the bride," he said. "I'll never see my superstar again."

Dawnn's brother, Ian Jr., said the men "changed his life forever."

"The last three years have been pretty challenging for my family," he told the court.

Ian Jr. told reporters after that the sentencing brought some measure of closure to his family.

"This verdict's not going to bring my sister back, and my family and myself, we understand that," he said. "But it is a message that justice is alive and well, and it can be and will be served as a really cold dish if it needs to be."

He said he hopes this sad case makes at least one young person in the city think twice before picking up a gun.

Dawnn Jaffier was hit by a stray bullet when Colas and Williams, two members of rival gangs, went after each other at the festival.

The Suffolk DA's office said Jaffier was standing a block from where the shots were fired on Blue Hill Avenue. A second victim who was standing about three blocks away suffered a non-fatal gunshot wound.

Williams fired the fatal shot, but both men were convicted.

"This is the third time since I've been District Attorney that a non-shooter has been held accountable for the murder of a victim when he started the fight," Suffolk DA Dan Conley told WBZ NewsRadio 1030. "And we're going to continue to do that."

He said the jury spoke for the entire community to say that arming oneself and shooting at one another in the city would not be tolerated.

But Jaffier's father said there were no winners here.

"It's almost like a lose-lose situation, because the defendants' parents are hurting," he said. "Maybe not as much as me, but they're hurting, too."

WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Carl Stevens reports

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