When you hear the words “Chicago gang shooting,” you probably picture a bunch of guys in business suits and fedoras. Frank Sinatra and Al Capone usually come to mind. This is what Hollywood’s early days of cinema have shown us, but what happened only a block away from the police station on Friday afternoon was much more real, and to one innocent bystander, deadly.
Yvonne Nelson, 49, was that innocent bystander, an employee of the City of Chicago who worked as an operator for the city’s Office of Emergency Management and Communication service. She had just walked out of a south side Starbucks at 35th and State, when a bullet struck her directly in the chest.
Flowers mark the spot where 49yo Yvonne Nelson was shot & killed in gang crossfire after getting a cup of coffee: pic.twitter.com/Dd5KPWnAIM
— DIANE PATHIEU (@pathieuabc7) May 21, 2016
Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson told local reporters that the bullet’s intended target was a “documented gang member.” When asked about the other victim, he said, “The female victim is completely innocent. She just happened to be exiting out of a Starbucks where she was struck by a gunshot.”
— CBS News (@CBSNews) May 21, 2016
Family members identified the Chicago gang shooting victim as Yvonne Nelson, not to be confused with the Ghana-born actress whose resume includes Single and Married and House of Gold.
The intended victim was a young man who was struck in the hand and buttocks on his way to depositing a paycheck at his bank around the corner. The young man was said to be in stable condition on Friday. He is an employee of the nearby Jimmie Johns sandwich shop, whose co-owner Diane Landry said the victim may have been involved in a gang when he was 15. However, the victim’s alleged past had caused no problems during his employment.
“He was a great guy. He never missed a shift, and he was always picking up shifts for other people. We never had anyone coming into the store looking for him or anything, or any problems at all. He is just a nice guy.”
Johnson stated that the latest Chicago gang shooting is just an example of how bad crime has gotten in the windy city. “This incident right here highlights what I’ve been saying for the past month and a half about how brazen these violent offenders are.”
Yvonne Nelson will be missed by many, says the City of Chicago.
“Yvonne Nelson was a dedicated and hardworking employee of the Office of Emergency Management and Communications, where she served as a communications operator in the 311 City Services division since 2002. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family, friends and colleagues during this difficult time. She will be deeply missed by her fellow staff at 311.”
After being fatally struck in the Chicago gang shooting, Nelson was taken to Stroger Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
Johnson has pointed out that the incident happened maybe an hour after the Chicago Police had a meeting at their headquarters. The top officers had been discussing a mass arrest of gang members.
It is still unknown who the gunner was, but it is suspected to possibly be a member of the gang which the wounded young man had been affiliated with, or a rival. The fact that it happened so close to police headquarters means the gunner was either ignorant of where he or she was, or as Johnson stated, “brazen.”
The Chicago gang shooting is still under investigation, and could result in yet another nationwide call for gun control. If this happens, citizens can probably expect Presidential candidates Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and Bernie Sanders to weigh in on the issue.
[Image via Keith Levit/Shutterstock.com]