Charges Filed in Fatal Carjacking

Carlos Hernandez, 44, was found with gunshot wounds to the chest just two blocks away from his Waukegan home Thursday

Two north suburban men have been charged with murder after a violent carjacking left a man dead Thursday morning in Waukegan.

The recovery of a weapon in an apartment complex Dumpster helped link the pair to the crime, police said.

A third man was released without being charged, pending further investigation, according to Waukegan police.

Fredrick T. Smith, 23, of Harvey, was found hiding in the building’s ventilation system, police said. Kerwin P. Murry, 22, was found hiding in an apartment after attempting to shave his head.

Both are charged with three counts of first-degree murder and are scheduled for bond hearings Saturday morning in Waukegan, police said.

Dozens of uniformed officers and detectives spent nearly seven hours ferreting out the men, who were hiding inside apartments in Lakeside Towers, a low-income high-rise in downtown Waukegan.

Waukegan Police Chief Dan Greathouse said the "three thugs" were walking at about 6 a.m. on their way to buy cigarettes when they spotted a car, engine running, in the driveway of a home at 417 Hickory St.

The victim, Carlos Hernandez, 44, who lived at the address, was either preparing to get into the car or already inside when the men approached, according to the family. The men shoved Hernandez back into the car and sped off.

"About a block away, there was a struggle," Greathouse said. "The victim was shot twice in the stomach."

Lake County Coroner Artis Yancey said Hernandez died of multiple gunshot wounds to the torso.

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