Thursday, December 11, 2014

Victim of Wilson Avenue Shooting Passes Away

We are extremely saddened to hear from the police that 21-year-old Leonardo Matias, the victim of the drive-by shooting that took place on Wilson Avenue Tuesday morning, passed away Wednesday. Mr. Matias was apparently performing his duties as a fire extinguisher inspector at a business across the street from Truman College when shots were fired from a four-door black sedan driving on Wilson.  Some media sources say that the gunfire was directed at another car in the area.

Ald. Cappleman sent out an email blast that included this information:
"Police believe shots were fired from a vehicle driving West on Wilson and are working with Truman College and local businesses in reviewing video footage of the incident to identify the vehicle. Thank you to our two foot patrol police officers on Wilson who were first on the scene and to witnesses who gave statements to police. The investigation of this shooting is ongoing.

As more information becomes available, I will keep you updated on this situation. As always, please call 911 for any emergency or to report a crime. If you have any questions or information for police, call the 19th District CAPS office at 312-744-0064."  
A tragedy for our community and Mr. Matias's loved ones.  We urge you to contact 911 or anonymously use TXT2TIP if you have any information about the people who committed this murder.


  1. Passes away?? Call it what it was - he was shot and died. Murdered.

    1. Very true.I was born and raised here in Uptown -can not believe what goes on now.People are scared to even go into Uptown in the day time.

  2. This is just terrible. These thugs have no regard for life at all.

  3. I wonder if the questioned the intended target? Very sad. Makes me very angry. My thoughts go out to the family of the victim.

  4. A young man working at the time, not even the intended target, who has his whole life ahead of him, getting caught in the middle of senseless violence. For two days a week, I was waiting for the Montrose bus by the stop between Broadway and the fire station. I decided to wait at another stop because I started to feel like a sitting duck. You have thugs who constantly (unless there's a monsoon or a polar vortex) stand around or walk up and down that street.

  5. Good thing we installed all those $10,000 cameras on light poles all over the north side. They have really helped catch all these drive by shooters. How are the police not able to identify the vehicles involved in this incident? Is there anyone that lives in Uptown that couldn't point out all the gang houses?

    1. Last April 1, at 10 PM, I was walking east on Lawrence, when a thug, walking west, elbowed me as we passed each other. He did not hurt me, but he definitely rattled me. He looked like he was in high school, but big enough to do some damage. He did not turn to look at me until he got to Winthrop and Lawrence. Then he turned around, directly beneath a camera stationed above him at Winthrop and Lawrence, and taunted me so viciously that I was very scared. I had pepper spray, but I did not advance toward him.

      At one point, he said, "I'm going to call the cops if you don't stop following me." I had not been following him at all. I called the cops, and when he saw me call them, he just walked off. I now believe that he was trying to get me to attack him, probably so that he could sue me in tort, as well as get me arrested.

      A couple days later, I saw the camera, and I observed that, unlike other cameras, the blue light was not blinking. I submitted a FOIA request to OEMC for the video of the encounter. The only response I got was the old "We have no record responsive to your request."

      If the camera wasn't working, the FOIA officer should have informed me. I read that at least some of the cameras actually react to the sound of gunfire to direct their focus toward the gunfire and to directly inform the police. I doubt that any of their cameras could do this. I also read that the cameras lack audio capability because audio would be "unconstitutional."

      A few nights after the encounter, I saw a lady walk a huge, beautiful German Shepherd. She definitely has the right idea.

  6. One thing you can count on about life and about Uptown crime is that it will always break your heart. This is terrible that an innocent young man was killed.

    Makes being stuck at Logan Airport, Boston sucks!, not seem like such a big deal.

    I haven't been home in a week and missed a few days of checking the local sites.

    Hopefully home in a few hours so I can enjoy our fifty degree weekend.

    You know I would expect some gang violence on a warm December day, but not as likely on a colder weekday in the middle of the day. Hopefully the cops have some good leads and hopefully the shooter rots in prison.

    Looks like another innocent victim was murdered in Rogers Park last week. Not a good week for the north side lakefront hoods.

  7. Criminal Housing. Criminal Housing. Criminal Housing. Where is the fricken State's Attorney? We and the police all know the gang bangers who live here and instigate the shooting. We know their leaders. We know where they live and whose leases they violate.

    We know their gang affiliations and we know which tax payer funded social service agencies house particular gangs in particular buildings. We've watched as buildings change management companies and virtually simultaneously change the gang that lives there. How much clearer does it have to be????? How many more bystanders have to have their brains splattered on the sidewalk just going about their daily lives? Do I have to lie down on the sidewalk again with a mother an two babies while they shoot the windows out of the storefront above my head as they try to kill the guy walking next to me? Why does living here mean that I have to learn that the best place to dodge bullets is behind the engine block of the nearest car? This is nuts.

    These building managers are getting paid on both ends. Once by the taxpayers to provide housing and once again by the gangs to provide an accomodating base of operations. Why else have we watched a single gang member living (with his off lease crew) in a unit that qualifies only for an entire family? They say they have a mission to provide housing for the un-houseable. Bullshit. You don't see them taking in the poorest of the poor who don't have visting Lexus SUV's and shoot-em-up vans parked out back. And, you don't see them giving the poorest of the poor $27,000 taxpayer funded moving bonuses to relocate to other buildings.

    There are criminal housing laws and they should be enforced. And yes, those laws can be enforced in CHA townhomes and and against housing run by taxpayer funded social service agencies, such as Voice of the People. Repeat: Voice of the People. It is time to stop the bullshit of telling us that they just can't document which unit the crime and shootings come from. In the 48th Ward, Ostermann forced camera's to be placed inside the building hallways to get the film footage needed for prosecution and eviction.

    Why isn't it getting done in our neighbor next to a public college and public CTA transportation hub? One answer is that the public officials don't make the effort because they believe it just displaces the problem to another building or neighborhood. So, they just have some designated neighborhoods where they turn a blind eye to the problem. Uptown is tired of being one of those neighborhoods.

    And then there is the famous line that Mayor Daley spoke while campaigning on Wilson Avenue . "\Well, the overall crime for your police district is really quite low." In other words, it is ok that Lakeview has virutally no crime while Uptowners are being shot on the street on a regular basis.

    How ironic that Mayor Emanuel was at the same spot a day later touting the wonders of our new Red Line CTA station. I guess it will match the blood on the sidewalk out front.

    1. Follow the money...

      Its very obvious that there is a tacit wink and nod to providing safe haven to bangers in subsidized housing.

      Somebody is making serious money off the deal.

      Time for some prosecutions and jail time...

    2. Brava!! For the most part, you hit the nail right on the read! City Council spoke loudly and clearly that they want Uptown to be the dumping ground for the dregs of Chicago's society when they decided that no more SROs can be closed. And yes, Cappleman pussy-foots it around with many of the Section 8 buildings' management--Voice of the People amongst the worst--by not being more aggressive with enforcement. I hope that he's waiting for more people to move into new buildings and re-developed buildings to provide socio-economic balance...and political cover. But I hope that that balance materializes sooner rather than later. The only answer is chasing the gangs out of Uptown...the sociology experiment has failed and it was never worth innocent lives to begin with.

  8. Virtually no crime in Lakeview? Osterman is tough on crime? What are you smoking?

  9. I see my compadres over at Uprising are all over the alderman's case over the number of murders in Uptown this year. Five. Last year there was one--which is a medical miracle considering the 20 or so people shot last year.

    Since 2007 there have been 30 murders in Uptown. That's roughly 4 per year. Now some of them occurred outside the 46th Ward and some of them were domestic and not gang related.

    Since Cappleman became alderman the number of murders has stayed roughly the same as it was under Shiller. Goes up and down and up and down on a yearly basis. Like a Ferris Wheel from Hell. Depending on how you choose to parse the number it's slightly worse or slightly better under Cappleman. Parse away.

    Does fewer cops have something to do with that? Maybe, but more likely it's just the fact that two gangs and their allies are fighting for supremacy in Uptown. Eliminate the war on drugs and the number of murders would go down.. However, since the gang idiots are basically unemployable I would expect other crimes to rise. No good deed goes unpunished!

    Now Uptown Girl does make some good points above. At some level we really need to look at our local gang problem as a housing problem. We need fast track evictions which the city attorney would handle. We need to force the low income housing managers to manage or find other companies to do the work.

    Is that likely in today's political environment? Try to pass a fast track eviction ordinance through the city council and listen to the howls from the housing rights activists. Ultimately their concern plays into the hands of the bangers and their enablers. They seem less concerned about the majority of people in low income housing who aren't criminals and the neighborhood as a whole.

    So endeth the lesson!

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    1. That would certainly improve the scenery on Wilson...but 1) the gangbangers doing the shooting (and replying with shooting) don't live there; and 2) as I wrote in my reply to Uptown Girl, City Council recently passed an ordinance that prohibits the closures of any more SROs like Wilson Men's Hotel. I think it even requires the owner of an SRO to sell it to someone else who wants to run it as an SRO, if the owner doesn't want to run it anymore. Ridiculous. And if I remember correctly, Cappleman voted against the ordinance--it basically got jambed down our throats by other aldermen who don't want problem SROs in their own back yards. I think the whole concept would be quickly declared unconstitutional if it was challenged by an SRO owner who wanted to convert his building to a better use, or at the very least, a takings challenge would succeed--but of course, that will cost taxpayer dollars, win or lose.

  11. I realize this blog is maintained by volunteers but why is it now that Cappleman has been elected I have to go to the crime in wriglyville + boystown blog to get crime updates in our neighborhood? Even this article was posted several days after the incident.