Saturday, August 15, 2009

Another Charged In Officer Valadez's Murder

Third man charged in police killing ordered held
August 15, 2009 4:53 PM | 1 Comment | UPDATED STORY
A third Chicago man was charged in connection with the fatal shooting of a Chicago police officer in June, police said today.

Christopher Harris, 20 of the 6200 block of South Paulina Street, was charged Friday with first-degree murder. He was ordered held without bail today by Circuit Court Judge Peggy Chiampas.

Harris was taken into custody Friday after a witness identified him as a third person involved in the June 1 shooting of Chicago Police Officer Alejandro "Alex" Valadez.

Kevin Walker, 21, of the 2500 block of West 70th Street, and Shawn Gaston, 20, of the 6200 block of South Paulina Street, have each pleaded not guilty to murder charges. Last month the officer was honored posthumously in a city council resolution.

Assistant Cook County State's Atty. John Dillon said in court today that Harris fired one of the shots that struck Valadez. Dillon said Harris was riding in the back seat of the car with the two other men charged in the killing. Harris allegedly fired a .357-caliber handgun that was one of the three guns later found in the car allegedly used.

Harris' hand tested positive for evidence of gunshot residue shortly after the shooting, Dillon said, indicating Harris had recently fired a weapon. Dillon declined to comment on why there was a delay of more than two months between that positive test and Harris being charged.

Harris admitted he agreed to return to the area where he, Walker and Gaston had been fired at, according to Dillon. He also admitted to firing shots from the back seat of the car, Dillon said. Previously, police said Gaston was the shooter and Walker was the driver.

Harris' criminal background consists of two misdemeanor drug cases. He is scheduled to return to court at noon Monday for a preliminary hearing on the murder charge. His public defender said Harris was a Harper High School graduate currently attending Kennedy-King College.

Valadez, a plainclothes Chicago police officer, died on June 1 at about 2:40 p.m. after being shot in the head and critically wounded early that morning in the West Englewood neighborhood on the South Side, authorities said.

Walker, Gaston and Harris had earlier been shot at by people they believed to be rival gang members near the corner of West 60th Street and South Hermitage Avenue, police said. The men then went to another location, picked up guns and returned to the scene to retaliate, police said.

Valadez and his partner had responded to reports of the initial gunfire and were in the 6000 block of South Hermitage Avenue talking to a citizen when Gaston opened fire from a car driven by Walker, according to police. Valadez was in plainclothes at the time, but was wearing a bulletproof vest and a police star.

Valadez was the third officer killed in the line of duty in the past year.


Hogday said...

You can almost see the defence's case being aired in that article. Thanks for keeping us posted, B's in B.

Marcus said...

Let's hope the guy rots in jail for a long time.

Sidenote - found this site while searching though blogger - very cool. I'll be following. Stop in at my site if you get a moment.

KO said...

I echo Marcus, they are scum.... You know the system wont treat them the way they should

and my Side note...

Hey Hows it going, I'm back in the Blog world, checking out your blog again, check mine out it's back, alittle different more on my life , rather then my job (Got my knuckles smacked)

All my follower are gone, so click to follow again... thats if u still like


Anonymous said...

God Bless the Valadez family. Another one of our officers who is still in need of prayers is Densey Cole. His accident occurred in 022 Dist. An individual got into the Tahoe stole his gun,clip & money & then kept moving him around threatening to shoot him. It is believed that caused his severe condition. His birthday (39th) is on Halloween & we being his neighbors thought it would be great if we could get people from everywhere to send him a card. He just returned from Colorado on Friday & the 001 Dist. will accept & deliver the mail to him. Send to: 001Dist 1718 S. State St Chgo. Ill & write in big letters:For Officer Densey Cole II. Thanks for your help.