Chicago high school student shot and killed

April 3, 2009 3:19:28 PM PDT
Another Chicago public school student has been killed by violence in the streets. Tommie Williams, 18, was gunned down Thursday night while walking with a group of friends on the city's South Side.

Williams is the 31st Chicago public school student and the fourth Chicago Vocational Career Academy (CVCA) student to be killed by gun violence this academic year.

Crisis counselors were on hand at CVCA Friday as a cycle of gun violence continues to claim the lives of Chicago public school students.

Williams' family says he wasn't in a gang but had friends who were, and that may have cost him is life.

"That's my grandson," Williams' grandmother Lois Davis said tearfully.

Davis was having a hard time Friday accepting her new reality that the grandson she has raised and nurtured is gone. Williams was shot to death Thursday night less than a block away from his home.

Witnesses say it was as he walked with a group of friends that shots rang out.

"I ran out, and I saw him bleeding in the back,and I just held his hand and was talking to him. He looked like he was doing a little bit better. He was breathing, just looking at me. I don't know what happened," the victim's brother Thomas Williams said.

Williams died a short time later.

City officials say they remain outraged by the violence and are looking at if a change in school district boundaries may have contributed to the problem.

"It's obviously an active gang conflict. We're working with police to ensure the right intelligence is there so we can correctly identify who's involved and take action before another tragic event happens," Chicago Public Schools CEO Ron Huberman.

"We've got new anti-violence initiatives going on, but you can't be everywhere, every minute of the day. Gang," said Chicago police Supt. Jody Weis.

Investigators say the attack on Williams may have been gang-related. They say they are looking to see if police cameras in the area captured the crime.

In the meantime, the family of Tommie Williams grieves.

"He always kept the house. He'll keep you with a smile on your face. That's what he did. That's what I like best about my brother," said Timothy Williams.

Twenty-six Chicago public school students died violently during the last school year.

As police investigate, detectives are looking into if Williams was possibly targeted by rival gang members.

As of Friday evening, there were no suspects in custody and no arrests had been made.


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