A 14-year-old boy was a key witness who identified one of three gunman who wounded his older brother and killed the older brother’s friend in Englewood, Cook County prosecutors said Thursday.
The boy saw the April 5 shooting from the window of his grandmother’s apartment and ran out when he thought the gunmen finished firing in the 6100 block of North Marshfield Avenue, Assistant State’s Attorney James Murphy said.
That’s when he saw 22-year-old Jamelle Carraway pull down his face mask as he stood over Vonshea Norman, Murphy said. Carraway then allegedly fired 10 more times into 20-year-old Norman’s body.
Carraway locked eyes with the boy, raised his gun, but then fled with two other gunmen, Murphy said.
The boy’s 20-year-old brother was also shot in the chest and legs but survived. Police recovered 30 shell casings at the crime scene, Murphy said.
Before he was killed, Norman drove to the neighborhood to show the teenage boy’s brother his new car, Murphy said.
The longtime friends were standing near the front passenger side of the car when a silver Volkswagen pulled up on the street and Carraway and the two others got out, Murphy said.
When one of Carraway’s cohorts said “yeah,” the teenage boy’s brother immediately recognized voice as someone he had known since the third grade, Murphy said.
That man, Carraway and the other gunman then pulled out their weapons with extended magazines before opening fire at Norman and the boy’s brother, Murphy said.
Right then, the 14-year-old looked out the window.
The boy gave police a physical description of Carraway and Carraway’s nickname. The teen later identified Carraway in a photo array, Murphy said.
Carraway made posts on social media about Norman’s murder on the day of his funeral, Murphy said. Cellphone data also shows his phone moving from the south suburbs toward the crime scene. The phone was turned off right before the shooting a mile away. But then 45 minutes later, the cellphone — still in the same area — was turned back on, Murphy said.
Detectives tracked Carraway’s cellphone again later that month when he went to Midway Airport and got onto a flight to Atlanta, Murphy said.
Carraway was taken into custody at his home Wednesday by police and U.S. Marshals on a warrant for Norman’s murder, his arrest report said.
Carraway lives with his two brothers and has been unemployed since he was laid off from his job at Krispy Kreme during the coronavirus pandemic, his defense attorney said.
Judge Mary Marubio cited the boy’s identification of Carraway in her decision to hold him held without bond for murder and attempted murder charges. Marubio warned Carraway there would be “zero tolerance” for him, or anyone else who attempted to contact witnesses in the case.
The Chicago Sun-Times asked the state’s attorney’s office Thursday if any services or protection had been offered to the 14-year-old witness through the its Victim Witness Unit, but a spokeswoman for State’s Attorney Kim Foxx said the office cannot comment on pending cases.
‘We have to figure out how to cope’
A year ago, a group of South and West side ministers hand-delivered a letter to Foxx’s office asking for the county to create a new program to better protect witnesses in violent crime cases and called the current resources “an abysmal failure that needs to be trashed.”
Foxx’s spokeswoman was not immediately able to provide information about any changes that have been made to the program since the letter was delivered.
Earlier this week, Cleopatra Cowley, the mother of Hadiya Pendleton — the teen gunned down at a South Side park in 2013 weeks after she performed at President Barack Obama’s inauguration — also called on the county to do more for victims and their families as they cope with the impact of violent crime has on them.
“No one reaches out to help us. We have to figure out how to cope,” Cowley told reporters at the courthouse Tuesday following a sentencing hearing for the getaway driver in Hadiya’s murder. “No one is saying “here, here, here’s this free counseling, here’s this program … I want to appeal to those that are in charge to make it a priority.”
Carraway is expected back in court Aug. 11.