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Man charged in fatal shooting of Michigan State student in Chatham

Lafayette Hodges, 18, turned himself in to officers about 4:05 a.m. Saturday and was charged with involuntary manslaughter, police said.

Sheriff Tom Dart announced March 24, 2020, a third Cook County Jail detainee tested positive for COVID-19 after showing flu-like symptoms.
A man was charged Dec. 28, 2019 in the fatal shooting of a 19-year-old Michigan State University student at a Chatham apartment while she was home on break.
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A man has been charged in the shooting death of a 19-year-old Michigan State University student who was killed Friday evening at a Chatham apartment while she was home on break, according to Chicago police.

Lafayette Hodges, 18, has been charged with a felony count of involuntary manslaughter, according to Chicago police.

Lafayette Hodges
Lafayette Hodges
Chicago police

About 9:50 p.m. Friday, a person reported hearing a gunshot and found 19-year-old Lyniah Bell wounded in the bedroom of an apartment in the 8100 block of South Maryland Avenue, according to Chicago police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

Bell had suffered a gunshot wound to the head and was pronounced dead at the scene, authorities said. Her death was ruled a homicide following an autopsy Saturday.

Lyniah Bell
Lyniah Bell
North Lawndale College Prep/Facebook

Hodges turned himself in to officers about 4:05 a.m. Saturday and was charged Sunday, police said. The shooting is believed to have been related to a domestic situation.

Bell, who was in her freshman year at Michigan State, graduated from North Lawndale College Prep and was a recipient of a Phoenix Pact scholarship, according to Dr. Garland Thomas-McDavid, president of the west side charter school.

“We just can’t say enough good about the positive impact she had on the school community,” Thomas-McDavid wrote. “She will be missed dearly, and our hearts grieve alongside her mother and family.”

North Lawndale College Prep
North Lawndale College Prep
Google Maps

In high school, Bell was a member of the National Honor Society and a Peace Warrior, according to Thomas-McDavid. She also participated in the theater club and the HoopsHIGH program, which teaches students sports broadcasting, and CAPS, a student mentorship program.

The school will offer support services for students Monday and Tuesday on the school’s campus at 1313 Sacramento Drive. Students will have access to counselors and can “create expressions that will be delivered to [Bell’s] family.”

Michigan State University officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment Saturday.

Hodges is due in Central Bond Court on Monday.

Area South detectives are investigating.

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