$5K reward offered in teen's death

32nd CPS student to die in violence this school year
April 9, 2009 5:27:27 AM PDT
A $5,000 reward was offered Wednesday night for help in finding the person who shot and killed a Chicago Public Schools student. The teenager was shot to death in the 7700-block of South Carpenter Wednesday afternoon.On Wednesday night, Fr. Michael Pfleger and other community activists went door to door near 77th and Carpenter, asking residents to call police if they know who shot 15-year-old Marquell Blake.

Family members say Blake might have been shot during a robbery attempt.

"People know who shot this person and people know where he is right now turn him in, turn him in," said Fr. Michael Pfleger, Saint Sabina's Church.

Blake was shot in the street around 12:30 p.m. His family said he was one block from his house. His distraught loved ones ran to the scene, but were forced back by police. Blake's father fell to the street in his anguish.

"The emotions are running high because the family members were out here but it's still a criminal investigation so we have to maintain integrity of the crime scene," said Cmdr. Eddie Johnson, Chicago police.

Police also believe Blake might have been the victim of a robbery. They do not believe it was gang-related.

"Too young to die. Really, you got two young black guys. One dead and one who did it," said Raymond Kendall, neighborhood resident.

Blake attended Chicago International Charter School on 95th Street. He is the 32nd Chicago Public Schools student to die in violence this school year. He is the 29th to be shot.

"Great kid, went to school, mind his own business. So, we don't understand what happened," said Linda Henderson, victim's aunt.

"You never think about it happening to you. You know what I'm saying? You never see yourself or you never know how people are really feeling until you (are) in that situation," said Eugenia Baxter, victim's aunt.

Last week, Chicago Public Schools and Chicago Police Department held a joint news conference about safety over spring break, which is this week. Blake had planned to spend his spring break with friends and family, according to his aunts.

Police are searching for a suspect in the case.


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