Cook County

Roommate ‘Spazzed Out,' Fatally Shot Man in South Chicago Because His Mom Owed Him Money: Prosecutors

The shooting happened on the evening of April 13 in the 2900 block of East 81st Street

A 19-year-old man allegedly shot his roommate in the chest, killing him, because he was frustrated that he was owed money, Cook County prosecutors say.

Carlo Beck was walking with the victim and a witness the evening of April 13 in South Chicago when Beck became aggressive and said he needed the money now, Assistant State’s Attorney James Murphy said Friday in a bail hearing.

Michael Archer, Jr. tried explaining that his mom couldn’t pay him back right then “because of everything that is going on,” but Beck became “aggressive” and, in one witness’ words, “spazzed out,” Murphy said.

Beck took out a gun, pointed it at Archer’s chest and fired it once, prosecutors said. Archer was rushed from the 2900 block of East 81st Street to a hospital, where he died.

The witness panicked and ran through a gangway, losing a shoe in the process, Murphy said.

The witness reached the home where they all lived and told the people inside about the shooting, Murphy said. Beck showed up moments later and said it was an accident and that he did not mean to shoot him, Murphy said.

Home surveillance video of the shooting shows someone wearing a blue jacket extend an arm, followed by another person falling to the ground, Murphy said. CTA video shows Beck and Murphy together before the shooting, with Beck wearing a blue jacket.

Police also found a loaded .380 Smith and Wesson in a backyard, but DNA testing is pending, Murphy said.

Beck’s defense attorney argued that his current charge of first-degree murder is unwarranted, given that an argument preceded the shooting, and should be reduced to 2nd-degree murder. Beck is a life-long resident of Chicago with no criminal record, his attorney said.

Judge David Navarro ordered Beck held without bail. He is due back in court May 27.

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