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Group Storms Church Wake; Mourners Attacked

May 15, 1992

BOSTON (AP) _ A group of youths stormed into a church wake Thursday and singled out a mourner, chasing him around the building before stabbing him repeatedly. Others were hurt.

″It was mass hysteria,″ said the Rev. John Borders of Morning Star Baptist Church. ″It was a very violent situation.″

Jerome Brunson, 21, was stabbed nine times, police Deputy Superintendent Robert Johnson said. Brunson was taken to Boston City Hospital, where his condition was not immediately available.

Two women were hospitalized with less serious knife wounds and several others suffered minor injuries.

One of the youths fired a handgun at least three times inside the church and again outside, police said. No one was shot.

The church was holding the wake for Robert Odom, 20, who was fatally shot early Sunday at a party. Witnesses blamed several would-be party crashers.

Police did not know why the church attackers singled out Brunson, but they suspected the same group was behind the fatal shooting. Johnson said police planned tight security for Odom’s funeral on Friday.

″The church is the one place that should be sacred, and should be off- limits,″ Johnson said.

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