Thursday, April 22, 2010

UPDATE - Toddler dies as shooter turns himself in

Here's the latest update, from Chicago Breaking News (at least 32 comments so far)

Update: A suspect in the shooting death of Cynia Cole has surrendered to police accompanied by the Rev. James Meeks. The man turned himself in at about 3:15 p.m at Area 2 headquarters.

"I am in the process right now, I'm standing with officers literally as we speak,'' Meeks said minutes before walking inside the police station on the Far South Side.

Jerome Hendricks dug his hands into his pockets, slumped his shoulders and wept outside Comer Children's Hospital this morning.

His daughter "Coco," just 20 months old, was fighting for her life and Hendricks said he knew the bullet that struck her in the head was meant for him. His jacket was stained with her blood.

He was still crying as he walked back inside. An hour later, his little girl was dead.

Authorities say they are looking for a man who was shot by Hendricks' friend last month. They believe the man -- 21 years old with an arrest record for guns and drugs -- was aiming for Hendricks when he fired into a car late Wednesday night in the 600 block of East 92nd Place.

But Hendricks' three young daughters were also in the car as they waited for their mother to buy some cigarettes at a neighbor's house. Suddenly, a hooded gunmen jumped from a gangway and opened fire.

"Coco shot, Coco shot!" 4-year-old Janiya shouted.

Cynia was quiet. "I seen she wasn't making no noise," Hendricks said.

The father said he reached into the back, took the little girl out of her car seat and cradled her head in his left arm as he sped away to his home around the corner.

Once there, his mother Cynthia Lyons, a nurse, applied pressure to the wound behind the girl's ear until an ambulance arrived and took her to Comer's Childrens Hospital.

Cynia's mother, Alberta Cole, said she had stepped onto to the porch and, as she waited for someone to answer the door, the gunman ran out of the gangway. "I didn't holler or anything," she said. "I just eased back so he wouldn't know I was there."

When his hood fell, she said she recognized him from the neighborhood. Hendricks told reporters the man was wounded by a friend of his last month.

According to court records, Michael Wilson, 22, was arrested for shooting the man now being sought for killing Cynia. Wilson is accused of wounding the man in the groin on March 7. Wilson lives on the block where last night's shooting occurred and, according to court records, has a gang tattoo on his upper right arm.

Police said they were also investigating whether the incident was related to two other recent shootings in the neighborhood.

A 27-year-old man was shot to death on his porch only a few doors from where the girl was shot Wednesday night. Another man was found shot to death in his car that had crashed into a Popeye's chicken restaurant early Tuesday morning.

Coco's grandmother Cynthia Lyons said everyone knew Cynia was one of her favorite grandchildren. And it didn't matter.

"She has a little doll face," she said.

But not a little personality. "She thinks she's the big sister," Lyons said.

Coco would often bake cakes with her grandmother, and her favorite part was licking the bowl.

She loved watching Dora and the Disney Channel -- especially Hannah Montana. She would have turned 2 in August.

Lyons pleaded for people to come forward and cooperate with police.

"I would like for anybody who knows anything to please come forward. If anybody's at home and knows that their relative, their brother, cousin or anybody might have done something wrong and is running scared."

"Somebody has to pay for this," Lyons said. "A 2-year-old baby is no longer with us.

"Catch this guy, please. Catch him. This is like taking the heart out of me. They took my heart."

Neighbors said the violence in their Burnside community is getting out of control.

"I don't understand why this crime keeps going on in this neighborhood," Rhonda Cook, a neighbor, told WGN-Ch. 9. "I was coming out of my house (when the child was shot) and heard some shooting. I think it's ridiculous. I think they should put some cameras on this block. This is the third time on this block someone got killed."

"Around here it's just goofy gang banging," said another neighbor, Brian White. "Just ridiculous. I used to be one, but what's going on today it's way worse than when I was growing up. I don't want my son to even go to school around here. He's in pre-school.

"It's too crazy around here. It's retaliation. It's never going to stop. I know that. A little girl...that doesn't make any sense. I got a plan. I'm gonna put some fliers out here to stop the violence. I want to start a program so we can march around the neighborhood. I want my son to be able to walk to the park without worry about getting shot."

-- Duaa Eldeib, Serena Maria Daniels, Jeremy Gorner, Liam Ford and Carlos Sadovi
Meanwhile, the Sun-times reports that the mother recognized the shooter (and gave us a more exact address)...
April 22, 2010
Sun-Times Media Wire

A “hysterical’’ mother and father of a baby girl witnessed the child getting shot in the head Wednesday night in the Chatham neighborhood on the South Side.

At 6:30 a.m. a Gresham District police lieutenant said the little girl who was shot is only 20-months-old and the gunman has not been arrested as of 6:30 a.m.
The shooting happened about 22 hours after a man was slain in almost exactly the same area.

The young child was shot about 11 p.m. on the 640 block of East 92nd Place, according to police News Affairs Officer Hector Alfaro.

A girl was a passenger in a vehicle when somebody opened fire, striking her in the head, Fire Media Affairs Director Larry Langford said, who said the child was two years old.

She was taken in “very critical” condition to University of Chicago Comer Children’s
Hospital, where she was still breathing upon arrival, Langford said.

The little girl was in the back seat of an older model Oldsmobile car that was
double-parked in front of a residence at the 92nd Place address when she was
shot, Gresham District police said.

The baby’s father -- who police believe was probably the target -- was in the driver’s seat and the girl’s mother was outside sitting on a front porch of the residence when the shooter came out of a gangway a couple of houses down and fired several shots into the vehicle, police said.

The bullet went through the trunk of the car, through the back seat and hit the child in the head, according to police who said she was in serious condition and undergoing a CT scan at Comer to find exactly where the bullet was.

The mother was “hysterical’’ and told police she recognized the shooter. Police would not disclose the "named offender's" identity though they said they were “hot on his trail,’’ about 1 a.m. police said.

It was not known why the man was the suspected target and no one else was injured.
Police said they did not see a car seat in the back seat of the Oldsmobile and the family was not in front of their own home.

Police said there has been a lot of gang activity, including shootings and a murder earlier the same day at almost exactly the same address where the girl was shot.

Ronald Rosenthal, 27, was standing on his porch on the 640 block of East 92nd Place
when he was shot 1:04 a.m according to police and the Cook County Medical Examiner's office.

Rosenthal, 27, was pronounced dead at 2:15 a.m. at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, a medical examiner's spokesperson said. A Wednesday autopsy revealed he died from multiple gunshot wounds and his death was ruled a homicide.

Calumet Area detectives are investigating both shootings.
This is tragic...i just don't know what to say right now, other than whatever community you are in, step up and step out...let's KNOW our neighbors, and let them know that this behavior is UNACCEPTABLE, and let them know there is another way....

All of us at The Sixth Ward blog care deeply about this issue, and would like this blog to be a powerful forum in helping our community avoid the violence and instead go on the successful path that Chatham residents of years past have gone.

1 comment:

  1. God be the glory ..this have hurt my family to the up most and now they let the killer go so there is no value to life anymore if we make it OK to kill.. I'm sorry if you are black there no value


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