CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -
Three men have been charged and will appear in court Monday in connection to a weekend shooting witnessed by a Chicago alderman.
William Lewis, a 28-year-old photographer, was standing on the street in the 1300 block of West Devon Avenue about 3:20 p.m. when someone approached on foot, produced a weapon and shot him in the back, according to police and the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.
Those who knew Lewis say he recently moved to the area because he thought it was a safe neighborhood.
Lewis, of the 4700 block of North Hermitage Avenue, was taken to Presence Saint Francis Hospital in Evanston, where he was pronounced dead at 3:58 p.m., authorities said. He was scheduled to start a new job Monday.
Early Monday morning, officials charged 31-year-old Eric Vaughn with first degree murder, attempted first degree murder and reckless driving. Vaughn was scheduled to appear in court Monday.
Vaughn was sentenced in the past to seven years in prison for a 2004 attempted murder conviction. Now, he is being held without bond on murder charges for his alleged role in the Saturday afternoon shooting.
Vaughn, a purported member of the Conservative Vice Lords street gang, was driving his car when another person in the car saw a rival gang member walking in the 1300 block of West Devon Avenue about 3:20 p.m. Saturday, said Assistant State’s Attorney Glen Runk.
Vaughn stopped the car, pulled a gun from the center console, gave it to one of the passengers and said “wet that T-shirt up,” meaning make the rival gang member bleed, Runk said.
Two passengers exited the car and fired about 10 shots at the suspected rival, Runk said. The 19-year-old intended target was not struck, but Lewis was shot in the back as he waited at a nearby bus stop, Runk said.
Later Monday morning, police announced weapons charges against 21-year-old Dayvon Freeman and 20-year-old Larry Willis. Chicago police officials say the victim of the murder was an unintended target of gang violence.
“I happened to be on Devon only a block from the shooting and heard the gunfire,” 49th Ward Alderman Joe Moore said in a statement. “I looked up to see the assailant, who appeared to be a teenager, continue to fire his weapon at a group of fleeing youths. It is something I will never forget.”
Chicago police officials say the victim of the murder was an unintended target of gang violence.
“I am told that police believe the shooting was a result of a gang dispute in another neighborhood that spilled into our own,” he said. “But the fact the violence may not have been homegrown doesn’t make this shooting any less a concern for us in Rogers Park.”
Officials say several other people are being questioned in connection to the shooting that occurred Sunday afternoon in Rogers Park.
Lewis, of the 4700 block of North Hermitage Avenue, died at Presence Saint Francis Hospital in Evanston less than an hour later, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.
Lewis attended art school in Milwaukee and moved to Chicago about two years ago, his friend Warren Rader said. He and his wife had moved in to Rogers Park just two weeks ago and he was set to start a new job Monday as a staff photographer for Trunk Club, an online men’s clothing store.
On Monday, Judge Donald Panarese ordered Vaughn held without bond.
Vaughn has two children, ages 1 and 3, and lives with his pregnant fiance, his lawyer said. He obtained a G.E.D. and had been working at a car wash.
The shooter and his accomplice were photographed by a witness, but have not yet been charged for the murder, authorities said.
The Sun Times Media Wire contributed to this story.