WBEZ | hadiya pendleton http://www.wbez.org/tags/hadiya-pendleton Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en First lady notes personal struggles in Chicago graduation http://www.wbez.org/news/first-lady-notes-personal-struggles-chicago-graduation-112168 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/michelleobama.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><em>Updated 5:47 a.m.</em></p><p>First lady Michelle Obama drew on her hometown connections and personal struggles from college and the White House Tuesday during a Chicago high school graduation speech to the classmates of an honor student gunned down in 2013 near the Obama family home.</p><p>A boisterous crowd of thousands attended the commencement ceremony for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. College Preparatory High School, a school that garnered headlines when teenager Hadiya Pendleton was fatally shot on the way home from class. Days earlier she had been in Washington, D.C., to perform with her drill team during President Barack Obama&#39;s second term inauguration festivities.</p><p>Pendleton would have graduated Tuesday. A chair &mdash; draped in purple fabric, her favorite color; a feather boa; and a bouquet of flowers &mdash; was reserved in her honor among her cap-and-gown-clad classmates. Her family was presented with an engraved class ring.</p><p>&quot;Hadiya&#39;s memory is truly a blessing and an inspiration to me and my husband, and to people across this country and around the world,&quot; Obama, dressed in a graduation gown, told the crowd. She went on to say, &quot;I know that many of you are thinking about Hadiya right now and feeling the hole that she&#39;s left in your hearts.&quot;</p><p>The first lady, who attended Pendleton&#39;s 2013 funeral, told students she understood the issues they faced because she experienced some firsthand growing up in Chicago.</p><p>&quot;I was born and raised here on the South Side &mdash; in South Shore &mdash; and I am who I am today because of this community,&quot; Obama said. &quot;I know the struggles many of you face: how you walk the long way home to avoid the gangs; how you fight to concentrate on your homework when there&#39;s too much noise at home; how you keep it together when your family&#39;s having a hard time making ends meet.&quot;</p><p>She said the South Side students were tasked with the responsibilities of changing &quot;skewed&quot; narratives about their communities, and would encounter people along the way who would doubt them. She said students could change things by what they say, do and how they carry themselves.</p><p>&quot;That&#39;s a burden that President Obama and I proudly carry every single day in the White House, because we know that everything we do and say can either confirm the myths about folks like us &mdash; or it can change those myths,&quot; she said.</p><p>The commencement speech before roughly 2,500 people at Chicago State University was among three the first lady has recently given. She spoke last month at Tuskegee University in Alabama and Oberlin College in Ohio.</p><p>King was chosen from about 200 schools that submitted videos after a challenge issued by the first lady last fall. Schools had to show commitment to college mentoring and financial aid help. King&#39;s video featured a spoof on the ABC program &quot;Scandal.&quot; The show&#39;s cast members sent a surprise video back acknowledging the school&#39;s win, which was played to the crowd and met with cheers.</p><p>The first lady also advised students to ask for help, something she learned while a Princeton University student in the 1980s when she felt &quot;totally overwhelmed and out of place.&quot;</p><p>&quot;If Hadiya&#39;s friends and family could survive the heartbreak and pain; if they could found organizations to honor her unfulfilled dreams; if they could inspire folks across this country to wear orange in protest to gun violence,&quot; she said, &quot;then I know you all can live your life with the same determination and joy that Hadiya lived her life. I know you all can dig deep and keep on fighting to fulfill your own dreams.&quot;</p></p> Tue, 09 Jun 2015 16:04:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/first-lady-notes-personal-struggles-chicago-graduation-112168 Morning Shift: Doc explores end of life care in prison http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-01-28/morning-shift-doc-explores-end-life-care-prison <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/resize_6.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Filmmaker Edgar Barens shares stories from his documentary about the final days of a prisoner and the care he gets from fellow inmates. And, we check in with Chicago teen Hadiya Pendleton&#39;s parents more than one year after her murder.&nbsp;</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-doc-explores-end-of-life-care-in-pri/embed?header=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-doc-explores-end-of-life-care-in-pri.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-doc-explores-end-of-life-care-in-pri" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: Doc explores end of life care in prison" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Tue, 28 Jan 2014 08:30:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2014-01-28/morning-shift-doc-explores-end-life-care-prison After Hadiya and "Nirbhaya": From Chicago to Delhi What Does Justice Look Like? http://www.wbez.org/series/chicago-amplified/after-hadiya-and-nirbhaya-chicago-delhi-what-does-justice-look-106823 <p><p>Here in the United States, Chicago in particular, street crime has taken the lives of far too many of our youth. In India, the issue of sexual violence has captured headlines. The tragic deaths of Hadiya Pendleton, a 15-year-old girl who was shot and killed just a few blocks away from her school, and &quot;Nirbhaya,&quot; the 23-year-old woman who was gang-raped by six men in a moving bus in Delhi, raise the question: what does justice for victims and survivors look like?</p><ul><li><strong>Cheryl Graves</strong>, founder and Co-Director of Community Justice for Youth Institute</li><li><strong>Mariame Kaba</strong>, founder and Director of Project NIA</li><li><strong>Sangeetha Ravichandran</strong>, program coordinator at A Long Walk Home&#39;s Girl/Friends Leadership Institute</li><li><strong>Alice Kim</strong>, director of The Public Square (co-moderator)</li><li><strong>Ryan Lugalia-Hollon</strong>, Justice Fellow at the Adler School and member of the SJI team at UIC (co-moderator)</li></ul><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/IHC-webstory_15.jpg" style="float: left;" title="" /></div><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><br />Recorded live Saturday, April 6, 2013 at the UIC Pavilion part of WBEZ&#39;s 6th Annual Global Activism Expo.</p></p> Sat, 06 Apr 2013 14:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/chicago-amplified/after-hadiya-and-nirbhaya-chicago-delhi-what-does-justice-look-106823 Fear and violence in Chicago: a female perspective http://www.wbez.org/blogs/leah-pickett/2013-03/fear-and-violence-chicago-female-perspective-106078 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/safety.jpg" style="height: 349px; width: 620px; " title="As much as we don't like to admit it, women in Chicago have much to fear when traveling alone. (ActInSelfDefense)" /></p><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Out of all the&nbsp;<a href="http://homicides.redeyechicago.com" target="_blank">violent crimes</a>&nbsp;that take place in Chicago each year (including 506 homicides in 2012, the vast majority of them gun-related, and 62 in 2013 so far), tragedies involving young innocents like <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-02-12/news/chi-hadiya-pendleton-charges-20130211_1_area-central-police-headquarters-gang-members-rival-gang" target="_blank">Hadiya Pendleton</a> and <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/12/jonylah-watkins-dies-6-mo_n_2859436.html" target="_blank">Jonylah Watkins</a> are always the ones that affect us the most.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">We see their smiling faces--so alive and so full of promise--and our hearts break, as we imagine our daughters, our grandaughters and even ourselves at that age. Then, we shudder with the horrible realization: that could have been my daughter, my grandaughter. That could have been me.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">As a young woman living in Chicago for the past several years, first in the South Loop and now on the edge of Logan Square and Avondale, I have grown somewhat desensitized to the epidemic of violence that I see as <a href="http://homicides.redeyechicago.com" target="_blank">little red dots</a> in my morning paper. I often venture to &quot;sketchy&quot; neighborhoods to cover a story, and I usually don&#39;t think twice about walking home by myself at 2 a.m. However, when I hear about a shooting just a couple of blocks from my apartment, or listen to a friend tell her story of getting mugged at bus stop just steps from my front door, I wonder if this bubble of safety that I&#39;ve created for myself is really just an <a href="http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/chicago-struggles-combat-gun-violence-article-1.1271786" target="_blank">illusion</a>.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">The mentality of &quot;it could never happen to me, because I don&#39;t live in x neighborhood and I don&#39;t know anyone in a gang&quot; is the easiest way to distance oneself from the crimes happening on a daily basis here in Chicago (and in <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/26/most-dangerous-cities-for-women_n_1456729.html" target="_blank">most cities</a> across the United States, for that matter). Still, does this &quot;blinders-on&quot; approach really help us in the long run, or does it just keep us more segregated from each other and ultimately less safe as a whole?&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Obviously, living in fear and paranoia doesn&#39;t help either; but to go the opposite route and refuse to educate oneself on the possible dangers of city life is just as detrimental, if not more so. Women in particular need to remain on constant alert, no matter how &quot;safe&quot; they may feel in a given neighborhood. Also, knowledge of basic self-defense is paramount, because let&#39;s face it: nobody thinks that they&#39;ll be a victim of a crime--whether it be an <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/technology/2012/09/iphone-thefts-apple-picking-on-the-rise/" target="_blank">iPhone theft</a>&nbsp;on the El&nbsp;or a <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-06-06/news/ct-met-mob-attacks-20110606_1_mob-attacks-downtown-japanese-doctor" target="_blank">random shooting</a>&nbsp;right outside their home or workplace- until it happens to them.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">And even if you think that you don&#39;t really <em>need&nbsp;</em>to take a self-defense class or keep a can of pepper spray in your purse at all times,&nbsp;<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gender_and_crime" target="_blank">statistics prove</a> that being a woman automatically puts a target on your back. Of course, women are&nbsp;<a href="http://www.trutv.com/library/crime/notorious_murders/women/women_killers2/3.html" target="_blank">just as capable</a> of violent behavior as their male counterparts (<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infanticide" target="_blank">infanticide</a> being a prime example),&nbsp;but the unfortunate truth remains that men are <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gender_and_violence#Gender_and_violence" target="_blank">10 times</a>&nbsp;more&nbsp;likely than women to commit murder, and a woman walking alone at night has <em>much</em> more to fear than an innocent man in the same position.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">So, what can we do to empower ourselves as women and avoid becoming victims?</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">- Learn basic <a href="http://www.chicagoloopster.com/2011/07/22/fight-like-a-chicagoan-self-defense-for-the-streets-of-chicago/" target="_blank">self-defense</a>. A physical and/or sexual assault can often be thwarted by the simplest of maneuvers: a hard&nbsp;<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strike_(attack)#Palm_Strike" target="_blank">palm strike</a> to the nose, a swift <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groin_attack">kick</a> to the groin or a strong blast of pepper spray to temporarily blind your attacker and give you a chance to escape.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">- Travel with a friend or in a group whenever possible, especially when navigating the city at night. If you are walking alone, make sure to stay in well-lit areas with lots of other people around.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">- If you think someone is following you, switch directions or cross to the other side of the street. If the person continues to follow you, move quickly toward an open store, restaurant or house with lights on. Don&#39;t be afraid to yell for help, although &quot;Fire!&quot; is usually the best way to get people&#39;s attention.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">- Resist taking your phone out while walking down the street or riding on the bus or train. Keep all valuables safely tucked away and out of reach.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">- Always be aware of your surroundings. Look up, walk &quot;with a purpose&quot; and avoid wearing headphones that will drown out what&#39;s happening around you.&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">- If someone does try to rob you, don&#39;t resist. Give up your belongings immediately (purse, wallet, etc.) and the mugger will be less likely to hurt you in the process. Credit cards can be cancelled and iPhones replaced, but your life is invaluable.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><em>Leah writes about popular culture for WBEZ. Follow her on Twitter at <a href="https://twitter.com/leahkpickett" target="_blank">@leahkpickett</a>.</em></div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div></p> Fri, 15 Mar 2013 08:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/leah-pickett/2013-03/fear-and-violence-chicago-female-perspective-106078 A Chicago teen's murder goes largely untold http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-teens-murder-goes-largely-untold-105510 <p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F79222881" width="100%"></iframe></p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/chicago%20flag%20half%20mast_0.jpg" style="float: right; height: 192px; width: 300px;" title="File: American and Chicago flags at half mast. (Flickr/Andy Phelan)" />There may be more similarities that unite Antonio Fenner and <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/cops-honor-student-killed-chicago-gang-members-105472">Hadiya Pendleton</a> than differences that divide them.</div><p>Both were teens, Antonio 16, Hadiya 15; both were black; both were Chicago Public Schools students.</p><p>And there&#39;s this one fact that will connect them always: both were killed in the final week of a historically bloody January in Chicago.</p><p>Perhaps the biggest difference between them is what&rsquo;s happened since their murders.</p><p>Hadiya was killed Jan. 29 in the 4500 block of South Oakenwald Avenue in Kenwood. Within days there was a $40,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of her killer.</p><p>Police set up a hotline for people to call with tips, and Supt. Garry McCarthy pledged a speedy investigation, which led to the arrest of two men on Feb. 11.</p><p>President Barack Obama, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Gov. Pat Quinn have all weighed in on Hadiya&rsquo;s death. The mayor and governor attended Hadiya&rsquo;s funeral. Her parents were guests of Mrs. Obama at the State of the Union address when the president spoke of Hadiya&rsquo;s murder.</p><p>Antonio was shot to death Jan. 26 in the 4200 block of West Congress Parkway in Garfield Park. So far, police have made no arrests.</p><p>Antonio&rsquo;s family said they have not heard from officers since their son was killed, and no one from the police department or mayor&rsquo;s office has made a public statement on his death. There is no reward being offered for help finding his killer.</p><p>Antonio lived in an apartment building about a mile south from where he died, with his mother, stepfather and four younger siblings, ages 9, 7, 5 and 4.</p><p>His stepdad Clarence Steen said Antonio often looked after his brothers and sisters, and enjoyed sports and hanging out with friends. Antonio was popular in the area, friendly with everyone.</p><p>&ldquo;He was 16, trying to do good in the neighborhood,&rdquo; Steen said. &ldquo;He was going to school, hanging out with the fellas every day, typical kid.&rdquo;</p><p>Antonio was a freshman at <a href="http://www.manleyhighschool.org/">Manley Career Academy</a>.</p><p>Christopher Boyd, 15 and one of Antonio&rsquo;s closest friends, said most days he and Antonio would join a group of friends at a park just two blocks from Antonio&rsquo;s house to play basketball or football.</p><p>&ldquo;He knew everybody, he was cool with everybody, so everybody is going to be down about this,&rdquo; he said.</p><p>Antonio was shot in the neck in front of an empty lot at the corner of South Kildare Avenue and West Congress Parkway.</p><p>He was found unresponsive on the sidewalk and pronounced dead at 6:45 in the evening.</p><p>The next day, friends, Manley students and family members decorated the perimeter of the lot with a handmade memorial that still stands, although the balloons, Bible passages and messages scrawled on poster board have been battered by winter weather.</p><p>Antonio&rsquo;s funeral at Miracle Temple Church, 4645 W. Madison Ave., was standing-room only and included a bus full of teachers who came from Manley.</p><p>&ldquo;He has four little brothers and sisters that he can&rsquo;t take care of,&rdquo; Steen said through tears. &ldquo;But we gotta move on, we gotta move on.&rdquo;</p><p>Steen said he has no idea why his stepson was killed, that &ldquo;he was just walking past the corner&rdquo; when someone opened fire. Police, too, have no idea of the motive, nor any leads on who may have done the shooting that also left 32-year-old Dimitri Buford dead, said Officer Robert Perez of the police news affairs department. Steen said Antonio did not know Buford.</p><p>Steen is not optimistic they will catch his stepson&rsquo;s killer and questioned if the police would even make an effort. Of his neighborhood, Steen said police think &ldquo;whatever they&rsquo;re doing, they&rsquo;re going to kill each other and our job is just to come by and clean up.&rdquo;</p><p>Police Officer Joshua Purkiss, also of news affairs, said he has no reason to believe the shooting was gang or drug related. As for Steen&rsquo;s claim that no one from the department had spoken with the family, Purkiss said because detectives do not note every action they take in an investigation, he has no way of knowing if anyone had spoken with the family.</p><p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;m not authorized to make assessments regarding if it was appropriate or necessary for them to speak with the family. Even though they are the grieving family it might not be pertinent to the investigation,&rdquo; Purkiss said. &ldquo;There are hundreds of murder investigations going on in Chicago every day &hellip; there is no way for me to ascertain if they have been out there.&rdquo;</p><p>West Garfield Park and Antonio&rsquo;s stretch of the neighborhood along its border with Lawndale is not an easy place to grow up.</p><p>Households in <a href="http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?pid=ACS_11_5YR_DP03&amp;prodType=table">Antonio&rsquo;s census tract has a median income of $22,833</a>, less than half of the average for Chicago as a whole, according to 2011 American Community Survey estimates. And about one-third of the households have an annual income under $10,000.</p><p>&ldquo;This is highway central for drugs, for prostitutes,&rdquo; Steen said. &ldquo;They come down here, do what they do, and then they throw their condoms and needles out the window. And me and the landlord are out here cleaning up because I got four more babies I need to take care of.&rdquo;</p><p>As Steen talked, a car stopped and idled in the middle of the intersection in front of his apartment building, and a young woman stepped out of the passenger door and walked slowly toward Steen and Christopher.</p><p>&ldquo;Hey, do you guys know the time?&rdquo; she called out from a few feet away. When given it she paused for a moment, then trudged back to the car.</p><p>&ldquo;She didn&rsquo;t want to know the ... time; she wanted to know if we were [selling drugs],&quot; Steen says after the young woman leaves.&nbsp; &quot;See, that&rsquo;s the problem with this neighborhood right there.&rdquo;</p><p>Patrick Smith is a graduate journalism student at Columbia College in Chicago.</p><p>He&rsquo;s part of a collaboration between WBEZ and a Columbia College project tracking homicides under the direction of Columbia faculty members Suzanne McBride and Dan Weissmann. Their project is funded with a grant from the Chicago Community Trust.</p></p> Wed, 13 Feb 2013 17:50:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-teens-murder-goes-largely-untold-105510 President Obama to speak at Chicago high school http://www.wbez.org/news/president-obama-speak-chicago-high-school-105515 <p><p>President Barack Obama&#39;s post-State of the Union speech in Chicago will be at a high school on the city&#39;s South Side.</p><p>The White House says Obama will speak Friday afternoon at Hyde Park Academy. The visit comes days after first lady Michelle Obama sat next to the parents of Hadiya Pendleton during the president&#39;s State of the Union address on Tuesday.</p><p>The 15-year-old girl was shot and killed about a mile from Obama&#39;s Chicago home. The majorette was killed just days after she performed at events for Obama&#39;s inauguration in Washington last month.</p><p>The president is expected to address gun violence and other issues.</p><p>Michelle Obama attended Hadiya&#39;s funeral in Chicago last weekend. Police say the girl was an innocent victim in a gang-related shooting.</p></p> Wed, 13 Feb 2013 16:23:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/president-obama-speak-chicago-high-school-105515 Cops: Honor student killed by Chicago gang members http://www.wbez.org/news/cops-honor-student-killed-chicago-gang-members-105472 <p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F78971702" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><em>Updated: 1:30 p.m.</em></p><p>A judge has ordered two gang members held without bail in the death of a 15-year-old Chicago honor student.</p><p>Cook County Judge Israel Desierto on Tuesday ordered 18-year-old Michael Ward and 20-year-old Kenneth Williams held.</p><p>Prosecutors say they have cellphone records placing Williams in the same area where Hadiya Pendleton was shot. They say Ward told police his gang and a rival gang had been shooting at each other since 2010. Ward said the rival gang killed one of his friends and he was still upset.</p><p>Pendleton died after being shot in a park about a mile from the Chicago home of President Barack Obama on Jan. 29, just days after she performed during his inauguration festivities in Washington. Her death was among dozens of homicides in Chicago last month, though her background and ties to Obama thrust her death into the national headlines.</p><p>Ward and Williams were charged Monday with first-degree murder, two counts of attempted murder and aggravated battery with a firearm, Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said Monday night. Both were taken into custody late Saturday while on their way to a strip club &mdash; and just hours after first lady Michelle Obama and other dignitaries attended Pendleton&#39;s funeral.</p><p>&quot;Ward confessed and indicated Hadiya was not the intended target. They got it all wrong,&quot; McCarthy said.</p><p>Pendleton, a popular high school majorette, was with a group of friends who took cover during a rainstorm under a canopy in a park about a mile from the Obama home on the city&#39;s South Side. Police said a man hopped a fence, ran toward them and opened fire with a handgun before fleeing in a waiting car. Pendleton was struck in the back and died later that day. Two others were injured.</p><p>McCarthy said Ward told investigators he thought he was shooting into the crowd of a rival gang, and that the shooting was meant as retaliation for Williams being shot in the arm in July. Police said neither Pendleton nor her friends were affiliated with gangs.</p><p>Williams, who refused to cooperate with authorities after the July shooting, was driving the getaway car, McCarthy said. He added that both men were arrested while on their way to a strip club to celebrate a friend&#39;s birthday Saturday night.</p><p>Pendleton&#39;s death was one of more than 40 homicides in Chicago in January, a total that made it the deadliest January in the city in more than a decade. But her murder attracted national attention and helped put Chicago at the center of a national debate over gun control.</p><p>Not only did the first lady attend the teen&#39;s funeral, but the girl&#39;s parents were set to sit with Michelle Obama during the president&#39;s State of the Union address on Tuesday night. Obama is scheduled to return to Chicago three days later to discuss gun violence.</p><p>Homicides in Chicago topped 500 last year for the first time since 2008, stoking residents&#39; concerns about gun violence and leading the police department to put more officers on the street and to focus more on combatting gangs.</p><p>McCarthy, who is pushing for tougher gun laws that would increase minimum sentences for gun crimes, noted that Ward was arrested in January 2011 on a gun charge but he received probation after pleading guilty to unlawful use of a weapon. If Chicago had laws like those in New York City, McCarthy said, Ward wouldn&#39;t have been on the streets.</p><p>&quot;This has to stop. Gun offenders have to do significant jail time,&quot; said McCarthy, who rose through the ranks of New York City&#39;s police and is the former police director in Newark, N.J.</p><p>McCarthy said the arrests occurred after police figured out that the description of the car in which the shooter fled matched the description of a vehicle in which Williams had been pulled over a day before the shootings. The police superintendent noted it didn&#39;t come from a tip from the community.</p><p>&quot;I&#39;m sad to point out we did not get our target audience to step up,&quot; he said.</p><p>Just as the December killing of 20 children and six adults at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., brought renewed scrutiny of the nation&#39;s gun laws, the death of the popular Chicago teen has cast the city&#39;s gun violence in a new light.</p><p>Earlier Monday, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel seemed to make just that point.</p><p>&quot;The only time when the gun issue ever gets affected is when Newtown happens,&quot; he said. &quot;What happens in urban areas around the country too often ... gets put to the side.&quot;</p><p>He said that while it&#39;s not wrong that massacres stir such debate, what happens on the streets of Chicago and in other urban areas &quot;gets put in a different value system.&quot;</p><p>&quot;These are our kids,&quot; he said, his voice rising. &quot;These are our children.&quot;</p><p>Emanuel joined McCarthy and Cook County State&#39;s Attorney Anita Alvarez at an afternoon news conference to announce they would push for tougher gun laws that would increase the minimum sentences and require offenders to serve at least 85 percent of their sentences.</p><p>They say the law now allows offenders to be released after serving no more than half their sentences and sometimes obtain their release after a matter of weeks.</p></p> Mon, 11 Feb 2013 20:18:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/cops-honor-student-killed-chicago-gang-members-105472 Hadiya Pendleton's parents to sit with first lady at State of the Union http://www.wbez.org/news/hadiya-pendletons-parents-sit-first-lady-state-union-105465 <p><p><em>Updated: 1 p.m.</em></p><p>A White House official says the parents of a Chicago teenager slain just days after performing during President Barack Obama&#39;s inauguration will attend his State of the Union speech.</p><p>Hadiya Pendleton, 15, was shot to death Jan. 29 in a park close to the Obama&#39;s Chicago home. Police say a gunman hopped a fence and opened fire on a group of young people. She was a majorette with the King College Prep band. Police have said Pendleton was an innocent victim in a gang-related shooting. Her death was among dozens of homicides in Chicago last month, though her background and ties to Obama thrust her death into the national headlines.</p><p>First lady Michelle Obama attended Hadiya&#39;s funeral in Chicago on Saturday. Her parents, Cleopatra and Nathaniel Pendleton, will sit with the first lady during Tuesday&#39;s speech, which is expected to mention gun violence.</p><p>A judge has ordered two gang members charged with Pendleton&#39;s murder be <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/cops-honor-student-killed-chicago-gang-members-105472">held without bail</a>.</p><p>Cook County Judge Israel Desierto on Tuesday ordered 18-year-old Michael Ward and 20-year-old Kenneth Williams held.</p><p>Ward and Williams were charged Monday with first-degree murder, two counts of attempted murder and aggravated battery with a firearm, Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said Monday night. Both were taken into custody late Saturday while on their way to a strip club &mdash; and just hours after first lady Michelle Obama and other dignitaries attended Pendleton&#39;s funeral.</p><p>Police say the shooters mistook Pendleton and her friends for members of a rival gang and attacked the group in retaliation for a shooting that injured one of them over the summer.</p><p>&quot;Ward confessed and indicated Hadiya was not the intended target. They got it all wrong,&quot; McCarthy said.</p><p>Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel says he&#39;s talked to the Pendleton&#39;s Monday about the two young men who were taken into custody over the weekend.</p><p>At a news conference, Emanuel said the call was one of several he&#39;s made to relatives of Pendleton, adding that most of the other calls were made simply to comfort them.</p><p>Meanwhile, Emanuel, Cook County State&#39;s Attorney Anita Alvarez and McCarthy said they&#39;ll push for state legislation that <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/cops-honor-student-killed-chicago-gang-members-105472">increases the minimum sentences</a> for those who violate the state&#39;s gun laws.</p></p> Mon, 11 Feb 2013 13:01:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/hadiya-pendletons-parents-sit-first-lady-state-union-105465 Michelle Obama to attend Hadiya Pendleton's funeral in Chicago http://www.wbez.org/news/michelle-obama-attend-hadiya-pendletons-funeral-chicago-105412 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/RS4790_AP111214051984-scr.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>WASHINGTON&nbsp; &mdash; A White House official says Michelle Obama will attend Saturday&#39;s funeral for the 15-year-old Chicago girl who was killed after returning home from performing during inauguration festivities for President Barack Obama.</p><p>Hadiya Pendleton was killed in a park close to the Obamas&#39; home on Chicago&#39;s South Side. Police say a gunman hopped a fence and opened fire on a group of young people, killing the drum majorette. No arrests have been made.</p><p>White House senior adviser Valerie Jarrett and Education Secretary Arne Duncan, both from Chicago, also will attend the funeral.</p><p>Pendleton&#39;s death brought renewed attention to Chicago&#39;s homicide rate and the debate over gun violence in America.</p><p>The White House official spoke on condition of anonymity because the first lady&#39;s travel plans had not been formally announced.</p></p> Thu, 07 Feb 2013 13:10:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/michelle-obama-attend-hadiya-pendletons-funeral-chicago-105412