Denzel Childs and Kayana Armond killed at memorial party in Back of the Yards; young witness dies of asthma attack

Chicago Sun-Times Wire

Two people were killed and two more were wounded in a shooting early Thursday in Back of the Yards. | Daniel Brown/Sun-Times

Two people were killed and two more were wounded in a shooting early Thursday in Back of the Yards. | Daniel Brown/Sun-Times

Denzel M. Childs and Kayana Q. Armond were killed, and two other people were wounded in a shooting early Thursday at a Back of the Yards neighborhood block party in memory of another shooting victim. A teenage girl who witnessed the shooting suffered an asthma attack and later died.

At 12:18 a.m., an altercation broke out in the 800 block of West 50th Place, and someone started shooting, according to Chicago Police.

Childs, 25, was shot in the neck, head and chest; and was taken to Stroger Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 1:20 a.m., police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office said. His home address was not known Thursday morning.

Armond, 34, was shot in the neck and was pronounced dead at the scene at 12:34 a.m., authorities said. She lived in the 10900 block of South Vernon.

Denzel Childs | Facebook

Denzel Childs | Facebook

A 21-year-old woman suffered a gunshot wound to the left hand and was taken to St. Bernard Hospital, while a 25-year-old woman was taken to Stroger Hospital with gunshot wounds to the back. Both of their conditions stabilized, police said.

Jessica Williams, 16, witnessed the shooting and suffered an asthma attack, authorities said. Williams, who lived in the 12000 block of South State Street, was taken to St. Bernard Hospital, where she was pronounced dead at 2:05 a.m.

The crime scene on West 50th Place stretched from Peoria to Halsted. Dozens of people, ambulances and about 15 squad cars were scattered along the street early Thursday. A man could be seen crying and walking away on Halsted with a female and two officers.

Kayana Armond | Facebook

Kayana Armond | Facebook

A woman, who preferred to remain anonymous, said she was the aunt of the 25-year-old woman who was shot. She said the party was a memorial for a friend who was shot to death about four years ago.

A witness said the party was in honor of the 25th birthday of “King Dell,” who was killed in 2012 when a man fired an AK-47 at people attending another party in Back of the Yards.

About 75-100 people were at the outdoor memorial party, grilling food and drinking.

The woman said she was across the street when she saw a man and someone else arguing.

“It was like someone who was from over here arguing with someone who probably wasn’t from over here,” she said.

Others said the argument appeared to have started over a parking space on the street.

Jessica Williams | Facebook

Jessica Williams | Facebook

The woman said as other people got involved, the first man pulled out a gun and fired into the air before more people started shooting. She later saw the first shooter getting rolled away into an ambulance.

“When I saw him pull the gun, I ran to a porch … and chilled there until it was safe,” she said. When the shooting stopped, she “heard everyone hollering ‘this person got shot and this person is shot and this person is shot’.”

She said her niece is a mother of four and a hard worker.

Another partygoer, James Hughes, said the shooters were part of a faction of the Almighty Black P Stone gang called the Moes, who “saw a fight [break] out and they fed off it.”

When the shooting started, Hughes said he saw more than 50 people try to run away. He took to the ground and tried to shield a friend whose “brother and father are already gone.”

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