Reporting Bernie Tafoya
CHICAGO (CBS) – The widow of one of the two people shot to death in the West Pullman neighborhood on Tuesday said she won’t rest until police catch the person who killed her husband.
“If I have to knock on the mayor’s door every single day for them to find out who did this to him, I will. I won’t stop. I will be an advocate for my husband until they bring this person to justice,” Valerie Simms-Carter said.
WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie Tafoya reports Simms-Carter sat on her living room couch on Wednesday with a roll of toilet paper next to her, ready for the times when she’d break into tears thinking about her late husband.
A street memorial for her husband, 38-year-old Jermaine Carter, sat outside their Wet Pullman apartment building Wednesday morning. It has the usual stuffed animals and handmade signs, but also lots of empty beer bottles.
“Yeah, he liked to drink his beer, he loved his beer,” Simms-Carter said of her late husband, who was shot and killed along with 25-year-old Quiltavia Patterson early Tuesday. Two others were wounded in the attack.
The shooting happened around 2:30 a.m. Tuesday outside Carter’s home in the 400 block of West 120th Street.
Police said a dark Chevrolet SUV rolled by, and someone inside opened fire. Patterson was sitting in a car outside the apartment building, and Carter was about to enter his home.
Patterson had just moved to Springfield with her 3-year-old twins to get away from all the violence. She was back in Chicago visiting her family. An aspiring rap artist, she graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a degree in health administration.
Although police have not said the shooting was gang-related, Simms-Carter said detectives have asked her about the possibility.
“All they said was he had a six-point star tattooed on his chest, could he have been in a gang?” she said.
Simms-Carter said her husband was a family man who was kind to all around him.
“This, with my husband being killed, was not gang-related. He was a family man, a husband, a friend, a father,” Simms-Carter said.
She said her husband might have been in a gang years ago, but not in the seven years she’s known him.
Police said Wednesday there was nothing new to report in their investigation.
Simms-Carter said she will not rest until her husband’s killer is caught.
“I’ll tell you one thing, they’re going to work for this one. They’re going to work to find out who did this to my husband,” she said.
Area South detectives are investigating, while community activist Andrew Holmes has put up $1,000 reward to find the shooter.