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2011 a year of ups and downs in Chicago

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The year 2011 was a year of ups and downs in Chicago. Rod Blagojevich again made big headlines, the city welcomed a new mayor, and the queen of talk said so long after 25 seasons on the air.

Two people were killed and five injured at the Church's Chicken at 66th and Halsted.

Police say it all started with an argument between two men.

"I was actually in the store with my brother, and we were getting something to eat," said one victim, 17, who asked not to be identified. He was shot in the thigh and grazed in the arm. "I just heard shots, and I had started running, and we all fell over the dude that got shot before us... and I got shot in my leg."

He says he didn't know the gunman or hear the argument. He says he's praying for two things.

"Change in the neighborhood and find the killer, find the shooter," he said.

"I heard the gunshots and thought this was just typical stuff because it happens every day around here, but then a few seconds later, all I heard was phones ringing, ringing," said Latoiya Brown, victim's friend.

"My first thing, I was just blacked out and I fell to the floor. I didn't know how to react. Like I said, I have known the guy for eight years and for them to just take him out like this, he gets straight As, he doesn't do anything to nobody. He is a peacemaker," said Diamond Brown, victim's friend.

The girlfriend of Dantril Brown, 17, says the junior at Prosser Academy was one of the seven people shot. His friends rushed to the restaurant after learning that he was among the victims.

"He is lovable. He is friendly. He is really caring. He cares about everybody. He checks on me all the time," said friend Asia Dennie.

Police say it all began with an argument between two men outside the area restaurant. One man apparently chased the other inside and started firing, hitting the seven victims. Two were pronounced dead at the scene, and five others were taken to the hospital.

"My baby was a good baby, you know. I raised him since like grammar school, and every day my son would say, 'What you need, Mama?' He was my little boy, even in grammar school he was a good boy, and this has got to stop. It's got to stop," said a relative.

Two of the victims were recovering at Stroger Hospital, but no names have been released.

The suspect remains at large, but police are hoping to identify him through surveillance video.

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