HUMBOLDT PARK —Martrell Raggs and friends and family had gathered at his sister’s home on the West Side. It was a balmy Feb. 17 and they were “just having fun because it was really nice that day,” his sister said.
Raggs was walking past the front door on his way back from the kitchen when someone knocked. He asked who it was and the person responded “me.”
Raggs unlocked the door and a gloved hand cocking a gun appeared. The shooter pulled the trigger.
“You never saw nobody’s face,” said Raggs’s sister, Florida Raggs, who was six months pregnant when the shooting happened at her home. “I didn’t know whether to hit the floor or run.”
At least four people were inside the home in the 3500 block of West Huron Street.
Once the shooter stopped and fled, the main room in the house was left smoky and covered in bullet shells. Raggs was apparently the only one hit.
“He was just laying on the floor,” his sister said. “Everything just moved so fast.”
Raggs was pronounced dead at Mt. Sinai Hospital and his death was ruled a homicide, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office.
“I strongly believe it was mistaken identity,” Florida Raggs, 25, said, explaining that another relative who was in the home may have been the actual target.
Raggs, nicknamed “Don Don,” was considered a peacemaker, who could diffuse tense situations.
However, Raggs did have a criminal record with convictions for possession and manufacturing of drugs, according to court records.
He didn’t graduate from Dyett High School but he had a dream of owning his own mechanic shop. When he was killed, he had a one-year-old daughter and a baby boy on the way.
Raggs loved dogs and owned "Chicago" — his red nosed pit-bull. He taught the dog to flush the toilet.
Florida Raggs wants the person, or people, responsible for the shooting to be brought to justice, but she doesn’t believe this case is a priority for police.
“… It’s just another black boy killed,” she said. “I just want him to be able to be at peace.”