Apparent Gang Violence Claims First Murder of 2012 - NBC Chicago

Apparent Gang Violence Claims First Murder of 2012

19-year-old man died in Albany Park shooting



    Apparent Gang Violence Claims First Murder of 2012
    Getty Images / Marco Di Lauro

    A 19-year-old man shot Monday in the back seat of an SUV in Chicago's Albany Park neighborhood is Chicago's first murder victim of 2012, police said.

    The West Rogers Park man's identity has not been released pending notification of relatives, according to the Chicago Tribune.

    The incident happened at about 2:30 a.m. in an alley on the 3000 block of West Lawrence Avenue, police said. Officials believe it occurred near Lawrence and Kedzie avenues.

    According to police, the victim traveled in a black Ford Explorer with a group of three men and a woman. The SUV stopped in the alley so that the men, including the victim, could urinate.

    A man approached the group flashing gang signs, police said. The victim ignored the man and his group quickly got back into the SUV.

    The apparent gang member pulled out a handgun and opened fire on the SUV. He was with a group of five to eight men, said Officer Robert Perez, a police spokesman.

    The victim was hit in the head as he was sitting in the rear passenger seat. The driver of the SUV took the victim to Swedish Covenant Hospital. Hospital officials notified police.

    The hospital transferred the victim to St. Francis Hospital in Evanston, where he later died.

    Police believe the man was an innocent victim. No arrests have been made.

    This was not the first shooting of the New Year. Just 10 minutes into 2012 police fatally shot Michael Smith, 52, after authorities said he pointed a handgun at officers in Marquette Park.