A Massachusetts college student, Carl-Hens Beliard, was shot and killed in Salem after a night of Halloween festivities. The incident occurred near Salem State University on Wednesday, just before 1:30 a.m. Beliard, a freshman basketball player, was found slumped over in a vehicle in a student parking lot on Forest Avenue near Lussier Street. He had sustained gunshot wounds and was rushed to Salem Hospital, where he was pronounced dead shortly after.
Authorities have arrested an 18-year-old suspect, Missael Pena Canela, in connection with the shooting. While few details have been provided, the police have stated that there is no ongoing threat to Salem State University. An active and ongoing investigation is underway, and a motive for the violence remains unclear.
Beliard’s mother, Altagrace Beliard, expressed her shock and grief, recounting her last conversation with her son. Beliard had plans to return home for Thanksgiving and celebrate his upcoming 19th birthday on November 11. He was also days away from potentially participating in his first college basketball game scheduled for November 8.
Described as a standout athlete, Beliard had previously been a member of the varsity boys basketball team. He had even visited the Statehouse earlier this year to meet Gov. Maura Healey and Lt. Gov. Kim Driscoll after the team’s victory in the Division 1 State Championship.
Salem Mayor Dominick Pangallo condemned the shooting as a terrible act of violence and extended condolences to the Beliard family and the Salem State University community. The investigation into the incident continues.