3 teens killed in South Side shooting

February 21, 2009 4:04:59 PM PST
Three teenagers were shot and killed Friday afternoon at 87th and Exchange Ave.Police say an assault rifle was used in the shootings. Police also say they have solid leads but no one is in custody so far.

Three teenagers are dead, bringing the number of Chicago Public School students killed by gun fire since September of 2008 to 21.

On Friday night, the area was crowded with police. Earlier witnesses say there were lots of civilians around the corner of 87th and Exchange but they scattered quickly when the gun fire erupted just before 4:00 p.m.

"It sounded like Iraq out there. For real. There was a lot of shots. There was a lot of commotion, people was running," said Kevin Noel, witness.

Johnny Edwards, 13, was walking home from Arnold Mireles Elementary school with his 16-year-old brother, a student at Bowen High School. They heard the shots and ran for cover.

"We had told them, you hear gun shots, run in the opposite direction or else you hit the ground," said Raymond Brown, Edwards' stepfather.

Edwards was pronounced dead at University of Chicago Children's Hospital.

The shooting also killed two Bowen High School students, a 16-year-old and 17-year-old. The police are still trying to determine who, if any of the victims, was being targeted by the gunmen. Investigators believe at least one of the weapons used was an assault rifle.

"It appears that they were attacked by several individuals, one of which had an assault rifle, based upon the cartridges on the scene," said Police Superintendent Jody Weis.

Investigators are also hoping to get information on the suspects from police surveillance cameras posted nearby.

Johnny Edwards' mother is still in shock and looking for answers.

"I just can't believe it. He comes home every day, come in and hug his mom, and kiss and say 'I love you mom' and now he's not here to do it anymore. I just can't believe he's gone," said Beverly Johnson.

The medical examiner is not releasing the names of the other two victims because that generally means not all the relatives have been notified.

With this latest shooting, seven teenagers have been shot in the Chicago area in the last week.