Charges Dropped in Chatham Triple Homicide

Nicko Grayson was accused of killing three people Nov. 5, including a young mother who had just returned to a car with a cake for her 2-year-old daughter’s birthday

Friday, Jan 20, 2012  |  Updated 10:09 PM CDT
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Prosecutors on Friday dropped charges against a 17-year-old accused of killing three people outside a South Side bakery in November.

Nicko Grayson was charged in the Nov. 5, 2011 deaths of Chanda Thompson, 21; Cortez Champion, 21; and Shawn Russell.

“While the charges against Grayson were brought in good faith based on witness accounts and identifications, additional information has developed during the ongoing investigation that warranted dismissal of the murder charges against Grayson at this time,” a statement from the State’s Attorney’s office said.

Thompson had just returned to a car with a cake for her 2-year-old daughter’s birthday when Grayson ran up to her car, reached in a kept firing, prosecutors said when Grayson was charged days later.

Thompson was hit in the neck and back, and Champion and Russell were shot in the head and back as they sat in a parking lot in the 400 block of East 87th Street near A Piece of Cake Bakery shortly after 5 p.m.

"The murders of Cortez Champion, Shawn Russell and Chanda Thompson remain a continuing investigation being conducted by the Chicago Police Department and the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office."

Investigators said they believe the shooting was part of a gang retribution ambush.

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