A Cook County judge ruled Tuesday that statements the alleged gunman accused of killing 15-year-old honors student Hadiya Pendleton made to detectives can be admitted into evidence at his trial.
Assistant Public Defender Julie Koehler argued that even though Micheail Ward said he had “nothing to say” during the several hour interrogation in 2013, police reinitiated the conversation, rousing the then sleeping 18-year-old, forcing him to talk.
Ward was not read his Miranda rights against self incrimination a second time, and the cops created a “hostile environment” by telling Ward that President Barack Obama was paying attention to the high-profile shooting, pointing out that the First Lady Michelle Obama came to the “f——” wake, Koehler said.
But Judge Nicholas Ford agreed with prosecutors and said that Ward was “fully and fairly aware of his situation” and was “not the powerless entity subject to the whim and whimsies of detectives.”
Hadiya was killed in gang crossfire on Jan. 29, 2013 in a South Side park a mile away from the Obama’s family’s Kenwood home.
Just a week before, the teenager had performed as a baton-twirling majorette with her King College Prep band mates at Obama’s inaugural festivities.
According to transcripts, Ward, now, 21, denied being at the scene of the shooting.
But he later admits to detectives he pulled the trigger six times, the transcripts show.
“That girl had nothing to do with it. She was just there. She got shot, s—,” Ward allegedly told detectives.
“. . . Nobody knew, nobody expected that girl to die, none of that.”
Ward’s first name has also been spelled “Michael” and “Mickeal” in court documents.
The alleged getaway driver in the shooting, Kenneth William, 23, is also waiting trial.