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Chicago Man Charged With Killing Homeless Man With Fire Extinguisher

Yancarlo Garcia (Credit: Elgin Police Department)

Yancarlo Garcia (Credit: Elgin Police Department)

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Updated 09/07/11 – 6:02 p.m.

ELGIN (CBS) – A Chicago man has been charged with killing a homeless man in Elgin by throwing a fire extinguisher off the top of a parking garage.

Elgin police said that Yancarlo Garcia, 23, tossed a fire extinguisher from the top of the Fulton Street Parking Deck, 245 Fulton St., at a homeless man who was sleeping in the alley below on Aug. 11.

The victim, Richard Gibbons, 60, was found with serious injuries to his abdomen and he was taken to St. Joseph Provena Hospital in Elgin before he was transferred to Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge.

Gibbons died at Lutheran General on Sunday, police said. An autopsy Monday determined Gibbons died of multiple injuries from an assault and his death was ruled a homicide, according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

“In a statement prior to his death, (Gibbons) said he woke up to the sound of laughter,” police spokeswoman Sue Olafson told the Sun-Times Media Wire. Then he was hit by the fire extinguisher.

Olafson said that police had no evidence that Gibbons and Garcia had met or been in an altercation before Garcia allegedly tossed the fire extinguisher.

Police found evidence at the scene that led them to Garcia, who was already being held in Cook County Jail on an unrelated charge, police said. He was charged with first-degree murder on Wednesday.

“This was a senseless crime of a defenseless man,” said Elgin Police Chief Jeff Swoboda. “It’s particularly sad when someone decides to randomly harm another who posed no imminent threat to anyone.”

After Garcia is released from Cook County Jail, he will be processed at the Elgin Police Department before appearing for a bond hearing at the Kane County Courthouse.