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Man killed gang rival after attending funeral: prosecutors

Uriel Gurrola was on house arrest for a pending aggravated battery case when he killed Armando Reyes in 2017, prosecutors said.

Uriel Gurrola was charged in the fatal 2017 shooting of Armando Reyes.
Sun-Times file photo

Hours after attending a funeral for a fellow gang member, a Chicago Lawn man who was on house arrest gunned down a rival on the Southwest Side, Cook County prosecutors said Thursday.

Uriel Gurrola — violating condition of his bond for a pending aggravated battery case — was driving his grandfather’s Hyundai Santa Fe on Nov. 7, 2017 when he noticed rival gang member Armando Reyes on a sidewalk in Brighton Park, prosecutors said.

Gurrola, deciding he would shoot Reyes, circled the 3800 block of South Sacramento Avenue while one of his three passengers lowered her window and ducked, covering her ears, Assistant State’s Attorney James Murphy said.

That’s when Gurrola fired six shots at Reyes, who had just returned from grocery shopping with his wife and child, Murphy said.

Uriel Gurrola
Uriel Gurrola
Chicago police

Reyes, 28, died at Mount Sinai Hospital from gunshot wounds to his back. Reyes’ family disputes that he was affiliated with a gang.

Following the shooting, Gurrola pulled into an alley, where he and his friends allegedly disposed of the spent shell casings and handgun. The group then called a friend to pick up the car, and they separated, Murphy said.

Prosecutors didn’t explain why it took three years to apprehend Gurrola. However, they said private surveillance video given to police captured the Santa Fe and its license plate, leading detectives to Gurrola’s grandfather, who said his grandson took the car without his permission on the day of the murder.

When officers searched Gurrola’s bedroom, they found his electronic monitoring bracelet, Murphy said. Murphy didn’t say when the search was conducted, but said records show Gurrola was outside his house from 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. the day of Reyes’ murder, which took place around 4:30 p.m.

Once Gurrola was taken into custody earlier this week, he told detectives he wasn’t the shooter, but merely the driver. But then later, he allegedly admitted he knew they were committing a “revenge shooting” when he looped around the block.

The woman who ducked inside the car recently told detectives she didn’t see who fired the weapon, Murphy said.

Gurrola has worked in construction and landscaping, and lives in Chicago with his brother and grandparents, according to his attorney Ed Koziboski.

Gurrola, who was ordered held without bail for first-degree murder, is expected back in court Dec. 1.