Teen shot to death in Maywood

June 3, 2008 4:29:51 PM PDT
A 17-year-old suburban high school student is dead. Tawanna Ford was shot Monday night in Maywood. What police are calling a "senseless" shooting has claimed the life of a teenage girl from the western suburbs. Seventeen-year-old Tawanna Ford of Bellwood was shot and killed while sitting in a car with a friend Monday night in Maywood. Police say Ford was an innocent victim.

Ford's mother is calling on the two people responsible for killing her daughter to turn themselves into police.

Tawanna Ford's mother and grandfather say this has been a very difficult day for the family. Her grandfather added that the killings and senseless violence must stop and that everyone needs to get together to try and put an end to the violence across the country -- taking the lives of our young children.

Tawanna Ford's mother Dana says it is not possible her daughter could have been the intended target.

"She was sweet, lovable, she'd give you the shirt off her back if she had it," said Dana Ford, victim's mother.

Monday night, just before 8 p.m., the 17-year-old left her house with her boyfriend. According to Maywood Police, Ford was shot in the head while sitting in the passenger seat in his car at the intersection of 9th Avenue and Washington. Police say the young man got into an argument with some people standing at the intersection when gunfire erupted.

Tawanna's mother now says she knows what too many other parents in the Chicago area are going through.

"Now I'm in that situation, I know what everyone is going through. Mine was only 17. I just believe she was in the wrong place at the wrong time," said Dana Ford.

Ford, a Bellwood resident , was a senior at Proviso East High School in Maywood. She was set to graduate this December, and had plans to go to Triton College, and then to the University of Miami.

Proviso principal Milton Patch said he has known Ford since she was in second grade.

"Always a smiling face, always happy. Tawanna was the kind of kid, always active, she was on our drill team. She played basketball. She was on a dance team," said Patch.

Tawanna's mother is a Cook County Sherriff's sergeant. She has words specifically for the person who shot her daughter to death.

"If you have any type of conscience, turn yourself in and make matters easier on yourself, because if they have to find you and catch you, it's going to be much worse, much worse, because you did not have to go out like this," Dana Ford said.

Maywood Police Sergeant Tim Curry says this was a senseless killing, with no apparent motive, that Ford was an innocent bystander who had a clean criminal record.

People are being questioned but no one is in custody.


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