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Man gets 52 years for shooting man in case of mistaken identity

Esteban Sotelo | Chicago Police

A man who shot a man he mistakenly thought was a rival gang member while the victim was placing his baby daughter in a car on the Southwest Side in 2013 has been sentenced to prison.

Esteban Sotelo, 22, a Latin King, was previously convicted of attempted murder, aggravated battery and aggravated discharge of a firearm, according to a statement from the Cook County state’s attorney’s office. Judge Evelyn Clay sentenced him to 52 years in prison Thursday.

The shooting happened as the 28-year-old victim stood near a car in front of his mother’s home with his mother, wife and 20-month-old daughter in the 2700 block of West 24th Street on July 25, 2013, prosecutors said.

According to prosecutors, the Latin Kings were feuding with a rival gang and Sotelo came up with a plan to have a 14-year-old accomplice shoot a rival gang member to complete his gang initiation.

Sotelo and the teen walked to rival gang territory to carry out the shooting, but the teen became nervous, prosecutors said. Sotelo ordered him to serve as a lookout and Sotelo fired six shots at the man as he placed his daughter in the car.

Sotelo and the teen then ran from the scene. They were later arrested by Chicago Police and the gun used in the shooting was recovered.

The victim–shot in the torso, shoulder and neck–lost sight in one eye and has undergone multiple surgeries, prosecutors said. He was not a gang member.

“He continues to suffer long-term debilitating effects as several bullets remain lodged in his body,” the statement from prosecutors said.

The 14-year-old accomplice was charged as a juvenile, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to a juvenile facility, from which he is currently on probation.