Judge to man accused of shooting and killing mother of his children: ‘When a gun is in a felon’s hands, bad things happen’

Robbie York, 42, faces manslaughter and weapons charges in connection to the deadly shooting of Melinda Anderson.

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Melinda Anderson

Melinda Anderson


A repeat felon was charged with manslaughter for allegedly firing a gun, killing the mother of three of his children.

Robbie York was also charged with being an armed habitual criminal and unlawful use of a weapon for the May 4 shooting that claimed the life of his ex-girlfriend, 28-year-old Melinda Anderson.

York doesn’t dispute that he fired the .22-caliber, derringer-style handgun, his lawyer, Nick Kournetas, said during a court hearing livestreamed on YouTube Thursday.

“He admittedly said he did shoot [Anderson] but never wavered at all saying that it was an accident and that he would never have intended something like that would happen,” Kournetas said.

That the shooting was allegedly an accident was of cold comfort to Cook County Judge John F. Lyke Jr., who tore into York, an eight-time convicted felon.

“This defendant admits to having this .22 derringer, and that’s why the law’s there, because they know that when a gun is in a felon’s hands, bad things happen,” Lyke said before ordering York held on $350,000 bail.

In interviews with parole boards for his convictions, which date back to 1995, York would have been repeatedly told he could not possess a gun, the judge said.

“And you’ve got a young lady, innocently dead,” Lyke said.

Melinda Anderson’s twin sister also said she didn’t believe York’s claim that the shooting was accidental, citing the Cook County medical examiner’s office findings that the gunshot was close enough that the bullet penetrated her skull.

Melissa Anderson told the Chicago Sun-Times she believes York pulled the trigger “because he didn’t want my sister to move on from him.”

The manslaughter charges are “not justice,” she said.

“That was murder. I don’t care what anybody said,” said Melissa Anderson, who added that she is doing “what I got to do” in order to take care of her slain sister’s five kids.

Before turning himself in to police, York, 42, allegedly gave multiple conflicting statements about how Melinda Anderson was shot in the head in the 5600 block of West Madison Street.

Robbie York arrest photo

Robbie York

Chicago police

York took the still conscious Melinda Anderson to West Suburban Medical Center in Oak Park, first telling an Oak Park officer that he was at home when she told him she was shot, prosecutors said. He left before he could be questioned further.

Melinda Anderson was initially able to walk into the emergency room and talk to staff, prosecutors said, but her condition deteriorated and she was later transferred to Stroger Hospital, where she died the following day.

York later told his ex-girlfriend’s family that she had somehow shot herself but later admitted that the gun had gone off while he was “opening and closing” it, prosecutors said.

York turned himself in to police on Monday and allegedly told detectives that he and Melinda Anderson were in a car together when he dropped the gun on the passenger-side floorboard, prosecutors said. He said the gun went off when he picked it up.

The weapon has not been recovered, and York told detectives he doesn’t know what happened to it, prosecutors said.

Melinda Anderson’s death was ruled a homicide by the medical examiner’s office.

York has previous convictions for armed robbery, unlawful possession of a weapon as a felon, and drug and burglary offenses, court records show.

York is expected back in court May 21.

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