By JACOB WITTICH
Chicago Sun-Times Wire
Celeste “CeCe” Cockriel and her cousins, Narcisco “Kiko” Ledesma and Antonio “AJ” Lopez, were fatally shot at a home in the East Side neighborhood on the Far South Side Sunday. The homeowner who shot them claims they were breaking in and the shootings were in self-defense.
Detectives initially questioned that man to confirm the story, but released him without charges on Wednesday.
A police source said the 31-year-old, who has a valid Firearm Owner’s Identification card, claimed he shot the three after they broke into his home.
“We have noticed inconsistencies in his story … we’re pressing pretty hard,” police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said of investigators who were interrogating the man.
Area South detectives continue to investigate the shootings, which were ruled homicides.
Under mounting pressure, the man hired an attorney Monday afternoon, Guglielmi said.
He did not say what kind of gun police recovered from the man, and asked if the alleged intruders were armed, he said, “We only recovered one weapon.”
Ledesma, 22, of North Austin; Lopez, 17, of East Chicago, Ind.; and Cockriel, 24, of Humboldt Park, all suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the body at 5:30 p.m. in the 10200 block of South Ewing, according to Chicago Police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.
All three were pronounced dead at the scene.
Ald. Susan Sadlowski Garza’s 10th Ward office is about three blocks south of the home where the shooting occurred.
“Right now they’re calling it self-defense,” she said, noting that she’d received details about the shooting from the commander of the 4th District police station.
“I can understand people’s fear,” she said, relating to how the homeowner said he reacted after finding intruders inside his home.
The shooting happened on the same block as St. Francis de Sales High School and steps away from 103rd and Ewing, where a bus picks up students who attend Catholic schools in other parts of the city, according to one local resident.
Visitation for Cockriel will be 4-9 p.m. Sunday, August 20, at Alvarez Funeral Directors, 2500 N. Cicero Ave.