DOLTON, Ill. (CBS) — Police in Dolton were seeking a suspect Sunday after a young mother was killed and a second person was wounded outside a nightclub in the south suburb.
Dolton Mayor Riley Rogers said the suspect appears to be a former boyfriend of the woman who was killed early Sunday morning. She was identified as Angelneka Smith, 31, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.
Rogers said there was some “discussion” between the woman and the gunman at the nightclub, located at 144th Place and Chicago Road. Security asked the quarreling parties to leave, the bar was shut down, and an argument was heard from outside the bar by management inside, Rogers said.
“The action moved outside where there was an argument, and shots were fired,” Rogers said.
A second person suffered non-life-threatening injuries in the shooting, Rogers said. It was not clear if or how that person was connected to the woman or the gunman.
There were about 30 to 40 people outside at the time of the shooting, Rogers said.
Rogers emphasized that the nightclub shooting was not connected to any other incidents. Still, this latest shooting comes amid a spate of gun violence that has left multiple people dead in Dolton in recent weeks.
On the night of Tuesday, Aug. 27, Akeira Boston, 16, was shot twice while sitting in a parked car outside a convenience store at 142nd Street and Woodlawn Avenue in Dolton. The teen was taken to University of Chicago Medical Center, where she later was pronounced dead.
Akeira was set to start her junior year at Simeon Career Academy.
Authorities said the bullets that killed Akeira were not meant for her, but for the boy with whom she was at the store.
Less than a week before that, Marshia Bowman, a 40-year-old mother of eight, was hit by gunfire as she drove down Sibley Boulevard near Woodlawn Avenue just over a mile away from the scene of the Tuesday night shooting.
Bowman was driving home with her four youngest children on the night of Wednesday, Aug. 21, when someone in another car nearby started shooting.
She may have been caught in the crossfire when two groups started shooting at each other, but it was unclear who was the target.
Bowman was struck in the head and lost control of her minivan – crashing it into a tree near Cottage Grove Avenue. She was pronounced dead a couple of days later.
There was also a fatal drive-by shooting in the 15000 block of Meadow Lane near Sibley Boulevard this past Monday night.
Back on July 22, a car was riddled with more than 15 bullet holes and a driver was forced to get herself to hospital, while just weeks later, there was a police-involved shooting at a used car dealership in which an officer was injured.
The violence has left some Dolton residents scared to go for a walk or even drive down then street.
“You’re afraid to walk to the store,” Pastor William Fleshman of Dolton’s Abundant Living Christian Center said Friday. “You’re afraid to go in the backyard and to have a barbecue.”
Rogers said Sunday that Dolton is “getting out in front” of the violence.
“There’s violence all over the Chicagoland area, and it just happened that we’re having our turn right now,” he said.
Rogers said Illinois State Police and the Cook County Sheriff’s Office have been called in to assist with patrols. He added that Dolton is a quiet community where crime has actually been on the decline, and characterized the southern suburb as safe community that has been experiencing “bad luck.”
“We have police officers – we could stand some more police officers. But this community is safe, and these are all isolated incidents,” he said. “Rest assured that we can get in front of this.”
Mayor Rogers said he has asked the Dolton Village Board for funding to hire 15 additional police officers.
No one was in custody in the early Sunday morning shooting as of Sunday evening.