WOODLAWN — Michael Nowels’ alleged attacker had killed before.
In 1990, Curtis Davis was convicted of the murder of Harvey Austin, court records show. He was sentenced to 40 years, but was released in 2008 after serving 18 years, according to court records and published reports.
On March 27, he allegedly killed Nowels, a father of two, and two of Nowells' friends in a home in the 6300 block of South Evans Avenue.
Nowels, 33, of Woodlawn, was struck 33 times and was pronounced dead at the Cook County medical examiner’s office Stein Institute.
All three victims had drug convictions and a large amount of cash was stashed at the home, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
The motive for the shooting was unclear, but Brown's family said the dispute was over a jacket, the report said.
The Woodlawn man was just about to leave the home late that night when Davis showed up, said his mother, Cynthia Nowels.
“The system failed him,” she said of her son. “Had they not let [Davis] out of jail before, we wouldn’t be in this situation.”
He was being held without bail in the Cook County jail, records show.
Cynthia Nowels said her son was a father of two — a 14-year-old son and a 10-year-old daughter — and he loved to spend time with his kids.
A bad case of diabetes left him unable to work, Cynthia Nowels said.
Despite that hardship, her son was happy and lovable, she said, adding that she misses her son’s laughter.
“You didn’t have to see him to know it,” Cynthia Nowels said.