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Boy, 14, among five charged with murder in SW Side home invasion

An 18-year-old man killed in a deadly home invasion on the Southwest Side was targeted because the group that attacked him, including a 14-year-old boy, believed that the victim had marijuana, cash and electronic equipment, Cook County prosecutors said Wednesday.

Upon the culprits’ arrests, it was the scared 14-year-old boy who began “trembling” and told the police officers what had transpired, according to an arrest report.

“I wanna go home,” the juvenile offender allegedly told police following Ricardo Ruvalcaba’s murder.

Ruvalcaba was sleeping, his 12-year-old brother was playing video games and his 16-year-old brother was walking to a nearby store when Schanise Barfield allegedly drove up to the residence with four others Monday morning.

No adults were in the apartment in the 5500 block of West 63rd Place.

The 16-year-old said his parents were at work at the time.

He saw Quinton Washington and Diamond Gamble walk toward his apartment and then saw Nathaniel Jefferson and the 14-year-old — who the Ruvalcabas knew — emerge from the alley and walk up the stairs to the residence, Assistant State’s Attorney Jamie Santini said.

All four then ordered the 16-year-old into the apartment at gunpoint and demanded he give them the drugs and money, Santini said.

By now, Washington, 24, and Gamble, 23, were wearing masks, but the 16-year-old recognized Washington’s maroon jacket from earlier, Santini said.

Once inside, the four suspects placed a sheet over the 12-year-old boy’s head and threatened to kill him if the brothers didn’t give up their property, Santini said.

The group proceeded to take the victims’ belongings, including electronics and a television and put them in a duffel bag, the 16-year-old said.

It was then that the 16-year-old agreed to give the suspects money and led Jefferson, 24, toward the rear bedroom where Ruvalcaba had been sleeping, Santini said.

As he came closer, the 16-year-old began raising his voice in hopes that his older brother would hear and wake up.

Ruvalcaba, who police said had documented gang ties, was awakened when his door was opened.

He got up and ran after Jefferson, Santini said.

During the chase, Washington allegedly fired the gun, striking Ruvalcaba in the stomach and chest.

Jefferson ran outside and Ruvalcaba collapsed on the front stairs, Santini said.

The 16-year-old was able to knock the gun out of Washington’s hand and take Gamble’s mask off, but he was beaten by the pair and the 14-year-old during the struggle, Santini said.

Ruvalcaba’s brothers ran to a nearby store to call 911 because the group had taken their cellphones, Santini said.

Meanwhile, Barfield, 22, picked the four others up and started driving toward the West Side of Chicago where some of the group lived.

But they were stopped at 9 N. Leclaire Avenue when patrol officers noticed Barfield’s Saturn was missing taillights, according to the arrest reports.

Barfield didn’t have a license or insurance and when the officer noticed a 9mm handgun in the trunk, all were taken to the police station, the reports said.

When the officers separated the 14-year-old from the group, he allegedly started telling them about the murder.

The older male suspects were identified and Washington implicated himself and his cohorts, Santini said.

Barfield also admitted to police that she was the getaway driver, Santini said.

Judge Peggy Chiampas ordered Washington, Jefferson and Gamble held without bond on murder and home-invasion charges Wednesday.

Barfield, of the 200 block of North Leclaire Avenue, was ordered held in lieu of $1 million bail.

The 14-year-old was ordered held in custody by Juvenile Court Judge Steven Bernstein.

The boy’s mother and grandmother had walked to the Leighton Criminal Courthouse Wednesday because police told them he would be there.

“I don’t give a – – – – about them. I care about him,” the boy’s mother said, upset she missed her son’s hearing at Cook County Juvenile Court.

“He’s a good kid. He started hanging out with the bad crowd . . . the gang-bangers.”

The 14-year-old’s mother said she knew her son smoked marijuana and knew he was going to buy some Monday when she last saw him.

He had been pretty much holed up inside his apartment since Thanksgiving when his other grandparents’ residence had the windows broken out, she said.

The mother, 34, said her boy called her after his arrest and assured her he’ll maybe face ten years in prison if he’s found delinquent.

“He was with them but he didn’t pull the trigger,” the boy’s mother said.

“His grandparents moved to Las Vegas and I had planned to send him there as well. I couldn’t get him out of Chicago quick enough.”

The 14-year-old boy’s mother said she lives near the shooting but asked her ex-husband to take her younger kids, ages 6 and 11, out of the apartment because she knows someone will seek vengeance for Ruvalcaba’s murder.

The 16-year-old didn’t want to talk about his brother’s shooting Wednesday.

Gamble, of the 5000 block of West West End Avenue, had a warrant for his arrest and was also charged with possession of a controlled substance.

Washington, of the 4900 block of West West End Avenue, was currently on parole for aggravated battery to a police officer, Santini said.

And Jefferson, of the 100 block of North Laramie Avenue, has previous drug convictions.