Teen Charged in CTA Shoving Death

Prince Watson continued to steal iPhones from commuters after Sally Katona-King's death, police say

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Sally Katona-King's church leaders and her daughter reflect on the woman who was pushed down the stairs at a CTA El stop. (Published Saturday, Apr 2, 2011)

    A Chicago teen has been charged in the March shoving death of a 68-year-old church deacon at a North Side 'L' stop.

    Prince Watson, 17, was charged with murder and robbery for allegedly pushing Sally Katona-King down a flight of stairs at the Chicago Transit Authority's Fullerton station, according to the Cook County State's Attorney's Office.

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    [CHI] Woman Turned Tragic Life Events into Mission of Giving
    The deaths of Sally Katona-King's husband and a grandson never made her turn her back on others, her family says. (Published Tuesday, Mar 29, 2011)

    The picture police paint is hardly that of a remorseful suspect.  Investigators said he committed two virtually identical crimes after the woman's death, stealing iPhones from commuters at the Brown Line's Sedgwick station on April 17, and again at the Red Line's Clark and Division stop on May 15.

    "That's how we became aware of him," said Area 3 detective Michele Wood. "We also became aware of him because an officer who saw one of the videos we had of the offender, thought it might be Prince Watson."

    Friend: Katona-King More Than a Crime Statistic

    [CHI] Friend: Katona-King More Than a Crime Statistic
    Sally Katona-King, a 68-year-old church deacon, died Tuesday, hours after being knocked down the stairs at a north side El stop by a fleeing robber. (Published Thursday, Aug 11, 2011)

    Police would not elaborate on their video evidence, but they said Watson had made a statement, and that they believe they have a strong case.

    "Storeowners and homeowners let us in to watch videos and look at pictures," said detective John Korolis.  "And witnesses were part of today's charges."

    Investigators said Watson was arrested after the May robbery and was in custody when they linked him to the March 28 Fullerton assault on Katona-King.

    About 200 mourners gathered to remember Katona-King, a deacon at First Lutheran Church of Logan Square. Her daughter, Eileen Katona, said her mother was devoted to her community. She praised her art of baking and lamented that so many of the plans her mother had made for the year would not happen.

    Watson is due in court on Thursday.

    Prince Watson