Emotions are often unruly. They are sometimes difficult to control, causing otherwise innocuous encounters to turn to violence. Unfortunately, a person who feels his or her life might be jeopardized by another’s actions may feel the need to react to the threat in self-defense. After a scuffle in Chicago involving a teenager, one man has now found himself charged with murder. However, it is unclear if they man may have been acting in self-defense or how the authorities were able to connect him to the murder.
The incident occurred in April 2014. According to a relative, a 16-year-old was walking to the store. He was approximately two miles from his house when he reportedly became involved in an altercation with a group of boys.
The teenager was then shot. Reports indicate that he died at the scene. Recently, a 31-year-old man was charged with his murder. Many of the details surrounding his death seem unclear. For example, it is unclear if he was shot as part of the altercation or if the man now accused of murder is suspected of being part of that group.
In order to obtain a guilty verdict, prosecutors in Chicago will have to provide some clarity to the court regarding the events leading up to the incident. If there was, in fact, an altercation, the person who fired a gun may have done so because he or she feared for his life. In the chaos of a fight, it also might be difficult to accurately determine who fired the weapon. Unless prosecutors can prove that this man, now charged with murder, is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, no conviction is possible. Guidance from those with experience with the criminal justice system may help the accused ensure that his rights are upheld as he navigates through the judicial process.
Source: NBC Chicago, "Man Charged With Murder of Simeon Football Player", , July 23, 2014