News

Girl shot in West Garfield Park: 'I'm devastated'

A 15-year-old girl walking home from school was shot in the abdomen Friday morning in the West Garfield Park neighborhood, officials and family said.

Tellissa Shields was walking with a friend when she was caught in crossfire in the 4200 block of West Wilcox Street around 11 a.m., according to family and a police source.

The friend helped her to the 4300 block of Wilcox, where she was treated by paramedics and police, the source said.

The girl's grandmother, Loretta Wesley, and police said the girl's condition has stabilized and she was in good condition at Mount Sinai Hospital. She was initially listed in critical condition.

As she talked, Wesley sat on her porch clutching photos of Shields at her eighth grade graduation earlier this year. "I'm devastated," she said, shaking her head. "I just want the tears to just come on down."

Wesley said she was at her home at Wilcox and Kostner Friday morning when she saw police cars speed down the street. Shortly after, Wesley said a woman ran to her porch and told her a girl had been shot down the street and had given her address to the bystanders.

"I never thought it was my granddaughter," said Wesley, who still ran down the street.

By the time she got there, Wesley said emergency responders had already placed her granddaughter on a stretcher and were lifting her into the ambulance.

Tellissa was walking back from Legal Prep Charter Academy High School at 4319 W. Washington Blvd., where she is a student, according to Wesley.

Witnesses said shell casings were found near a SUV with a shot-out window about a block and a half from where the girl was struck.

Police are investigating whether the shooting was in retaliation for a shooting in early July that killed two people and wounded two others, including a 14-year-old boy.

The four were shot in the 4100 block of West Adams Street as they were walking down the street, police said. At the time, investigators said they believed the shooting was gang-related.

Tribune reporter David Heinzmann contributed to this story.

Chicagobreaking@tribune.com

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
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