Accused of taking part in a gang-related shooting that wounded two innocent girls attending an end-of-year school picnic, the two boys — 16 and 17 — stood silently before a Cook County Juvenile Justice Division judge Monday morning, hoping they’d be set free.
“Both offenders live in Indiana, and there’s a substantial flight risk,” argued Cook County Assistant State’s Attorney Emily Czerniejewski. “And electronic monitoring would not be able to monitor them in Indiana.”
The boys, who both had short dreadlocks and wore brown county-issued sweatshirts, were charged with two counts of attempted murder and two counts of aggravated battery with a firearm.
“This was in broad daylight,” Czerniejewski said of the brazenness of the drive-by shooting, which occurred Friday afternoon outside Warren Elementary School, in the 9200 block of South Jeffery.
Judge Cynthia Ramirez agreed the boys were a flight risk and reaffirmed the decision a separate Cook County judge made at an initial hearing held Sunday that the boys are a risk to the public and should remain in custody.
Also charged with two counts of attempted murder in the shooting was Raekwon Hudson, 19, who, moments before shots were fired from a back seat window, allegedly flashed gang signs from the front seat for the “Pimp Boss Gang L City Faction,” Czerniejewski said.
Hudson, charged as an adult, was also ordered to remain locked up at a hearing Sunday where Cook County Judge Peggy Chiampas refused to grant him bail.
A grandmother for one of the boys attended Monday’s hearing and confirmed she was the boy’s legal guardian but otherwise remained silent.
At least 11 shots were fired from a stolen Jeep the boys were allegedly riding in.
Authorities have not said who they believe pulled the trigger.
The intended targets of the shooting were three students who showed up to the picnic but were denied access by a security guard because they had not been allowed to participate in the school’s graduation ceremony for disciplinary reasons, a prosecutor at Hudson’s bond hearing said.
The prosecutor said the occupants of the Jeep spotted the trio and opened fire because they were rival gang members.
The three fled through the school playground, drawing fire into a group of kids at the picnic, some of whom were filling water balloons.
A 7-year-old girl was shot in her right thigh and suffered graze wounds to the pinkie and index fingers on her right hand.
A bullet went through the right hand of another girl, 13, fracturing her ring finger, a wound that may require surgery, Yassan said.
Minutes after the shooting, police on patrol a few blocks away saw the Jeep in a garage as the garage door began to close. Hudson and two teens ran, but police caught up and arrested them.