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$500K bond for man charged with murder of 80-year-old

Ted Merchant | Chicago Police

Bond was set at $500,000 for a 67-year-old man charged with the fatal shooting of an 80-year-old man at the senior living facility where both stayed Monday morning in the South Shore neighborhood.

Allen Smith, 80; and 67-year-old Ted Merchant, both residents at the Senior Suites of Rainbow Beach at 2804 E. 77th Pl., headed out onto the facility’s back patio area about 1:10 a.m. Monday, prosecutors said in court Wednesday. Smith was walking and Merchant was riding a motorized scooter.

Smith left the patio briefly to look at a vehicle as Merchant stayed on the patio, prosecutors said. When Smith returned, approached Merchant and stood in front of him, Merchant got out a firearm and shot Smith several times.

Merchant went back into the facility before walking back outside, getting into a 2002 black Lincoln Town Car and driving away, prosecutors said.

Smith’s body was not found until 6 a.m., prosecutors said. He was pronounced dead at the scene, and his death was ruled a homicide.

When officers responded, they found Merchant in the Town Car in the senior living facility’s parking lot.

The shooting was captured on the facility’s surveillance video, and Merchant was identified by three people as the shooter, prosecutors said. He faces one count of first-degree murder.

Merchant’s public defender said he is retired and worked in real estate.

Judge Donald Panarese ordered Merchant held on a $500,000 bond in court Wednesday.