Man Charged After Shooting Star Athlete Over Air Jordans 

A Chicago man is facing first-degree murder charges after murdering a star athlete to take his Air Jordans. The victim was an avid collector of old sneakers and had arranged to meet someone to purchase the vintage apparel. Two men who were apparently hiding nearby rushed the athlete as he was placing the sneakers in his trunk. One of the men shot him in the chest. Weirdly, neither man grabbed the shoes, which was the apparent payoff of the shooting. His mother speculated that the victim’s size and physique may have scared the attackers off. Yet another senseless death.

Of the two men involved in the robbery attempt, only one is facing murder charges. It is unclear if the other man has been charged with a crime or not. However, since he was involved in a robbery attempt, he could very easily face charges for the murder. Police would need to establish that the man conspired to engage in the robbery attempt. However, Chicago does not like felony murder charges, especially recently under Kim Foxx’s administration. The man will likely be charged with armed robbery, but the police have yet to issue any obvious charges against the second man.

The first man, the one who pulled the trigger, will face first-degree murder charges for the attempted robbery. However, since nothing was actually stolen, it may allow his friend to walk away from the incident without consequence.

Unpacking the Legal Issues

In Illinois, you can charge someone with first-degree murder even if they did not pull the trigger in a violent felony. This was a violent felony and an apparent robbery. However, because the target merchandise was never stolen and perhaps because the culprits panicked, there was no actual robbery — only one man shooting another man to death for no apparent reason. For that reason, the police may not charge robbery at all, and may only charge the first suspect for firing the weapon. Details concerning the suspect are sparse at this time. It appears both men chanced upon the victim after he had purchased the Jordans, decided to rob him, but panicked after firing the weapon. It could also be that they realized fencing the stolen Jordans would be difficult, but that affords the suspects more conscious consideration than appears warranted in this case. 

The defendant who pulled the trigger will face a first-degree murder charge, the most severe in Illinois. He will likely face life in prison or a term of at least 45 years. The defendant’s criminal history and circumstances surrounding the murder will also factor into his conviction. If the defendant has a history of mental illness or drug abuse, his attorney can claim that his poor and evil choices are related to mental health issues that are correctable. If stabilized and kept sober, they could eventually be a good citizen. Nonetheless, the man will be in prison for the next four decades unless his defense attorney can plead down to second-degree murder.

Talk to a Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney Today

If you have been charged with a serious crime in the Chicago area, the defense team at David Freidberg can help prevent the prosecution from railroading you on speculative claims and shoddy police work. Call today at (312) 560-7100 and we can begin discussing your options immediately. 

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