A 26-year-old man was charged Saturday in a shooting that killed two people, including a toddler, in the North Lawndale neighborhood this week.
Devon Swan faces murder charges in the shooting of 2-year-old Lavontay White and 26-year-old Lazaric Collins in the 2300-block of South Kenneth Avenue on Tuesday. A pregnant 21-year-old woman was also wounded in the shooting.
Police said they believe Collins was the intended target of the shooting, which stemmed from a dispute between Collins and a group of individuals. Chicago Police Commander Brendan Deenihan said police are searching for more suspects.
Swan has a prior criminal history and has been arrested nine times previously for armed robbery, illegal gun charges and narcotics possession, police said. The I-Team reports that Swan was paroled from the Illinois Sheridan Correctional Center in LaSalle County less than a year ago, on April 8, 2016.
Moments before the shooting, the woman, who was three months pregnant, was driving and using Facebook Live to stream the group as they were singing and driving, capturing images of the toddler sitting in the backseat. While she was streaming, a blue Chevrolet Spark pulled alongside their vehicle with Swan and three others. Two of the individuals began firing at the victims’ vehicle, prosecutors said.
The woman fled from the shooting. Collins was shot five times in the abdomen, back and legs. Lavonte was shot in the back of his head and the bullet exited through his cheek, prosecutors said.
Prosecutors said the Chevrolet Spark belongs to Swan’s girlfriend, who he dropped off to work one hour before the shooting. Swan allegedly told multiple people that he was involved in the shooting and that it was retaliation for the shooting of his friend, prosecutors said.
Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson credited community members and Saint Sabina Pastor Fr. Michael Pfleger for coming forward with information leading to the arrest of Swan.
On Friday, community leaders offered a $10,500 reward for information leading to a suspect in the shooting.
Lavontay was one of three children who died this week after being shot in Chicago.
Antwan Jones was charged with the murder of 11-year-old Takiya Holmes. Her classmates released balloons in her memory on Friday.
Police were still searching Saturday for the person who killed 12-year-old Kanari Bowers-Gentry, who was shot within a half hour of Takiya a week ago.
Earlier Saturday, Takiya’s family pleaded with the public to come forward with information about Kanari’s murder.
“When they said they got the guy who shot Takiya, it lifted a heavy weight off my heart. It gave me a little peace. And I want you guys to have the same peace,” said Patsy Holmes, Takiya’s grandmother.
“Please help this family because somebody came to help ours. We need to be there for them too,” said Yulonda Scott, another of Takiya’s grandmother.
Community activist Andrew Holmes went door-to-door with fliers in the city’s West Englewood neighbhorhood, where the 12-year-old was shot.
“Three children should have been playing today. They should have been to the park. They should have been with their grandparents,” Holmes said.