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Gang members on ‘security’ duty behind 2015 Garfield Ridge murder

SHARE Gang members on ‘security’ duty behind 2015 Garfield Ridge murder
SHARE Gang members on ‘security’ duty behind 2015 Garfield Ridge murder

Cook County prosecutors have charged one of two alleged shooters in a 2015 murder in Garfield Ridge, and the second gunman is in custody.

The two men were working as “security” for a towing company that hired Satan’s Disciples gang members to protect its trucks from rival towing companies, which in turn were protected by rivals of the Satan’s Disciples, Assistant State’s Attorney Jamie Santini said Tuesday during a bond hearing at the Leighton Criminal Courthouse.

Carlos Cregan, 30, and another member of the Satan’s Disciples were apparently on call the night of Aug. 22, 2015, when they went to a bar in Clearing, Santini said. At the bar, the pair met Leonardo Morales, who, during the course of the evening, told the two men he was a former member of the rival 2-6 street gang.

At closing time, the three men chatted outside the bar, when Cregan and his fellow Satan’s Disciples member got a call that a tow truck driver was squaring off against a driver from a competing company, Santini said. All three piled into a dark-color sedan and drove to the scene of the tow truck drivers’ stand-off.

When they left the altercation, Morales rode in the tow truck, thinking he would get a ride home. Cregan’s fellow gang member called the truck and told the driver to follow their sedan,Santini said. The two vehicles drove to an alley in the 5200 block of South Menard, where the three men got out. As Morales lit up a cigarette, Cregan’s companion said he was going to “smoke that mother—-r” and shot Morales in the head from close range, Santini said.

Morales, 34, fell to the ground, and both Cregan and the second Satan’s Disciple stood over his body and allegedly fired into Morales’ body. Morales was shot four times, suffering wounds to his neck, head and thigh. Police found multiple .40-caliber and 9-millimeter shells at the scene. A witness in the alley at the time of the shooting identified Cregan and the second shooter, and Cregan later would brag about the killing to another witness, Santini said.

Surveillance video showed the three men outside the bar, then leaving together in a dark-color sedan shortly before Morales was killed, and video shows the sedan and tow truck pulling into the alley where Morales’ body was found, Santini said.

Cregan on Tuesday was ordered held without bond on a single count of first-degree murder, and the second shooter is in custody and was expected to appear in court Wednesday, Santini said.

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