Man shot to death for not renouncing gang affiliation

Abel Ruiz

Abel Ruiz

Latin Kings street gang member Abel Ruiz shot and killed a rival gang member this week after demanding the man renounce his own gang and “throw down the fork,” prosecutors said.

The man he murdered, Brandon Cage, was shot in a Chicago Lawn street early Wednesday after he declined to do so, authorities said.

On Friday, the 21-year-old Ruiz appeared in Cook County court facing a charge of first-degree murder for Cage’s death, and was ordered him held without bond, according to prosecutors.

About 1:30 a.m. Wednesday, Ruiz was riding in a car with fellow Latin Kings when he instructed the driver to stop in the 3300 block of West 60th Street, according to court records.

Pulling a handgun out of his waistband, Ruiz approached several people in a parked car, stuck the gun against the driver’s head and demanded he “throw down the fork” to show allegiance to Ruiz’ gang, prosecutors said. The driver of the car, who was waiting for Cage, complied.

When Cage walked up moments later Ruiz made the same request, prosecutors said. Cage declined, professing to be a member of the Gangster Disciples. Ruiz then raised the gun and shot him three times in the chest, according to police and prosecutors.

Cage, whose age and address are not known, was pronounced dead at 3 a.m. at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office. An autopsy showed he died of multiple gunshot wounds.

Ruiz fled the scene after the shooting, but the driver of the car that stayed behind called police and provided a description of Ruiz and the getaway car, prosecutors said.

Ruiz was arrested during a traffic stop a short while later, prosecutors said. He was Tasered while in police custody after he tried to kick out the windows of a police car, prosecutors said.

While in police custody, Ruiz, of the 3600 block of West 57th Street, told some of the others in the lockup that he had just shot a man, prosecutors said.

- Sun-Times Media Wire

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