By Noel Brennan, Jeramie Bizzle
COUNTRY CLUB HILLS, Illinois (WBBM) — A teenage boy was shot and killed following a homecoming football game at Hillcrest High School Friday night.
Police say the shooting happened in the 17400 block of South Pulaski Road around 9 p.m. Officers were dispersing a group of people when shots were fired by an unknown offender.
During the incident, the victim, identified as 14-year-old Marshawn Mitchell by the Medical Examiner’s Office, was shot multiple times, police said.
He was taken to an area hospital and was later pronounced dead.
Community activist Andrew Holmes is in touch with Marshawn’s mother, Amanda Lenoir.
“As a mother that carried this child nine months and you only got one child, she’s hurting real bad, so the family is confident in her,” he said. “But she’s trying to make heads or tails or sense out of this senseless shooting, but this young man didn’t have to lose his life.”
She tells CBS 2 that Marshawn had only been a student at Hillcrest for a week. He transferred schools and was hoping to join the football team. His cousin and grandmother say he started his freshman year at Brother Rice High School but recently transferred to Hillcrest to be with friends.
Football is “all he ever wanted to do,” his mom said. He was a “good kid,” “respectful,” and “always had good grades.”
She said Friday was his “first homecoming game as a freshman, and he never made it home.”
“He just thought about football, going to the NFL, and this was her only child, so she’s very devastated,” Holmes said.
The Andrew Holmes Foundation is offering $1,000 to anyone with information that leads to the arrest and conviction of a suspect in this case.
Marshawn’s cousin and grandmother tell CBS 2’s Darius Johnson they are in a state of shock and disbelief while trying and honor and remember the young teen.
The Hillcrest Hawks football team posted the following on its social media about the shooting:
“We are all saddened by the events that happened tonight after our Homecoming Football Game against Oak Forest. There is an active investigation by all the appropriate authorities! We are praying for all involved! Please pray for our staff and students who have been affected by this unfortunate, senseless act of violence!”
According to the school’s website, the homecoming dance was scheduled for Saturday night but has since been canceled.
District 228 will offer supporting resources on Monday for anyone affected by the incident.
Cook County Commissioner Monica Gordon also issued a statement into the shooting:
This weekend’s killing of Hillcrest teenager Marshawn Mitchell is another example that no place is safe from gun violence. On an occasion when Hillcrest High School students, alumni, family members and staff should be having fun, the night ends in the senseless death of a 14-year-old.
Unfortunately, gun violence is the leading cause of death among children, teens and young adults under 25-years-old in Cook County. This cannot continue. We must find a way to keep guns out of the hands of irresponsible people. We must find a way to stop the flow of guns from neighboring states to our communities. We must find a way to make our young people see the value of their lives and others.
Last month, I announced the formation of the 5th District’s Violence Prevention Advisory Council. Tragedies like this is why we all must work together to protect our young people. Our communities, our cities and our county can’t afford to lose another promising life.
The Uvalde Foundation For Kids, a national nonprofit organization formed following the Uvalde Texas School shooting in May 2022, is also now offering a financial award for direct information leading to the arrest of the suspect.
National director of the foundation Daniel Chapin in a statement said:
“This young student at the start of their future has now had their bright light taken from family, friends & school community.. Our hearts and actions are toward this precious school community at this time. We believe that someone knows something about this. Someone saw something. Regardless of circumstances, it can be worked out. Do the right thing and come forward.”
The shooting remains under investigation by the Country Club Hills Police Department.
Please note: This content carries a strict local market embargo. If you share the same market as the contributor of this article, you may not use it on any platform.