Baby smiled, waved at suspects before mother was fatally shot in Austin, prosecutors say

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A judge denied bail for two men accused of killing a young mother while she shielded her baby Tuesday morning in Chicago's Austin neighborhood.

RELATED: Woman, 24, shot, killed on West Side while holding baby
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A neighborhood is in turmoil after a 24-year-old woman was shot and killed as she held her daughter in her arms Tuesday morning.



Michael Washington, 39, and Eric Adams, 23, are both charged with first-degree murder, police said early Thursday.

Prosecutors revealed in bond court that the 1-year-old girl smiled and waved at the two suspects before they opened fire on her mother, 24-year-old Brittany Hill. After hearing the details of what allegedly led to Hill's murder, the judge called the crime "chilling, mind-boggling, utterly senseless if this is true."

"Brittany Hill was struck almost immediately by one of the bullets in the right side of her abdomen. Victim Hill was able to hold on to her child and turn her back to shield the child from further gunfire," Assistant State's Attorney James Murphy said.

Police say the two men pulled up in the 1200-block of North Mason. Washington allegedly firing shots from the front passenger seat of a silver Impala. Brittany Hill holding her daughter, the child's father and two others ran for cover.

Prosecutors say Adams and Washington got out of their car and continued firing shots.

"Defendant Washington is then seen pointing the gun back at the direction of victim Hill as she lay on top of her child behind a parked car," Murphy said.

The shooting was captured on surveillance video.

"Chicago police began their investigation immediately and they were able to obtain the license plate number for the Impala from the Pod video. The registration led to a person in Champaign," Murphy said.

Prosecutors say Chicago police contacted their counterparts in Champaign and that department was already in the process of setting up surveillance on Washington's home for an unrelated narcotics search warrant.

Champaign police took the men into custody that afternoon. They appeared in court Thursday on first degree murder and attempted murder charges.

Neighbor Rashod Graves saw Hill seconds before she died, as she stood outside with her boyfriend and played with her daughter.

"She was happy that day. That morning, she was happy," Graves said. "They say one day you're here and one day you're gone. I say one second you're here the next you're gone."

Investigators believe this shooting was not random, but Hill was not the intended target.
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