'He didn't want to be a statistic': Father of 1-year-old boy gunned down while smoking outside home

Marcell Johnson worked two jobs to support his young Sheridan Park family, his older brother said.

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Friday, October 28, 2022
Dad of 1-year-old gunned down outside home; widow seeks answers
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New father Marcell Johnson was killed in a Chicago shooting outside his Sheridan Park apartment, police said. His wife is seeking answers.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Jalanni Johnson has been struggling to understand the violence that claimed the love of her life.

Her husband, 30-year-old Marcell Johnson, was gunned down as he stood outside his North Side apartment building, smoking a cigarette.

"He didn't want to be a statistic of Chicago, Illinois. He was a proud father, worked two jobs to take care of his family," Jalanni said.

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The Aug. 29 attack happened in the 4600 block of North Dover Street in the city's Sheridan Park neighborhood, where Marcell lived with his wife and their 1-year-old son after moving from Columbus, Ohio.

"Yesterday, I cried myself to sleep just knowing that he's not coming back and then, I'm really hurt, because his son," said Misha Mcglory, the victim's older sister.

That evening, the couple had dinner and put the baby down, but the 29-year-old mother said it wasn't until her husband went outside to smoke that the unthinkable happened. Jalanni said she heard gunfire, looked out the window and saw her husband had been shot, then rushed to his side.

"I told him, 'Please don't leave me,' because I knew for a fact I couldn't handle him not being here with me," Jalanni said.

Marcell died of his injuries. Chicago police said two people walked up to the husband and father and opened fire on him. Relatives have no idea why Marcell was targeted, saying maybe it was a case of mistaken identity, since nothing was taken.

His older brother said Marcell worked two jobs to support his young family.

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"My brother, he wanted to make the world a better place," said Marsharay Abbott, the victim's older brother.

The Chicago natives met when they were teens and were high school sweethearts who graduated from the same college. They went on to marry, celebrating their third anniversary just days before Marcell was killed.

As investigators hope to get any leads that could help find Marcell's killers, a widow and grieving mother has been making a plea for justice.

"You've already ruined our lives. Now, we have to put our lives back together. Just please turn yourself in," Jalanni said.