BY RUMMANA HUSSAIN
A South Side man was convicted Saturday of the murder of a woman who was killed when a Chicago Police car slammed into her during a high-speed chase the man initiated following a residential burglary.
The jurors, who were sequestered after failing to reach a verdict Friday night, returned the verdicts after roughly two hours of deliberation.
During Jones’ three-day trial, defense attorney Keith Spence argued that the officers pursuing his client were responsible for Reynolds’ death because they neglected to follow department policy and procedures by driving recklessly.
Reynolds’ death was tragic, Spence said in his closing arguments, but “it wasn’t Tim’s fault.”
Reynolds, who was in her 50s, was killed when Gresham District patrol officer James Sivicek’s police Tahoe rammed into her blue car in the 2400 block of East 76th Street, causing her to hit another vehicle and sending him into a tailspin.
Sivicek said he immediately tended to Reynolds as Jones fled.
Jones had been erratically barreling through the streets alone at a high rate of speed after his friends had gotten out of his cousin’s car and ran, prosecutors said.
Before that, Jones and one of his pals held up Lee Davis at his apartment, in the 7800 block of South Ellis Avenue, and took cash, Air Jordan gym shoes, an iPad, an iPhone and several bank cards, prosecutors said.
Jones took the stand Friday, admitting to jurors that he ran through red lights and stop signs during the chase but only because he saw an officer waving a gun at him before he zipped down 76th Street.
“There’s a guy behind me with a gun. I’m not going to stop for no one,” said Jones.
The former college football player also said he feared for his life after Davis threatened him and a friend with a weapon when they came to recoup money he said Davis owed him for the illegal credit card business they operated together.
Jones said Davis opened the door for him voluntarily that spring morning.
But Davis testified that he didn’t know Jones and only opened the door to his first-floor apartment because he thought it was his girlfriend, who had just left to go on a shopping trip.
Jones, who said he never had a firearm on him the day of the incident, claimed he never knew there was crash and that Reynolds had died until after his arrest.
He confessed he lied to detectives when he was interrogated, because two years ago, he was just a “kid.”
Assistant State’s Attorney Barbara Bailey said Jones was “hiding” the truth and said it was laughable that he insisted he was honking his horn warning other motorists as he eluded police.
“His running ends today. He’s responsible for all the actions he set in motion. He’s responsible for this fatality,” she said.