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Family of Slain Teen: 'They're So Trigger-Happy, It's Like An Epidemic'

By Quinn Ford | September 12, 2013 3:04pm | Updated on September 12, 2013 3:06pm
 Antonio Calhoun, 19, was shot to death Wednesday in the 10200 block of South Oglesby Avenue.
Antonio Calhoun, 19, was shot to death Wednesday in the 10200 block of South Oglesby Avenue.
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SOUTH DEERING — Allan Harris said the last time he spoke with his stepson, 19-year-old Antonio Calhoun, the two talked about food.

"He ate the last egg," Harris said. "So that's what he talked about, yeah."

Harris said Calhoun left their home in the Grand Crossing neighborhood Wednesday afternoon to hang out with friends in South Deering, where the family had lived until they moved last month.

Hours later, Harris was standing on a street corner in South Deering, looking at his stepson's body from behind police tape.

"It's like a dagger to see him laying like that," Harris said. "It hit home."

Police said Calhoun was walking down the sidewalk in the 10200 block of South Oglesby Avenue about 10:50 p.m. Wednesday when a dark, four-door sedan pulled up and someone inside began shooting.

Calhoun was hit in the upper chest and was pronounced dead at the scene just 20 minutes later, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office. Neighbors said his body was in a gangway between two houses on the block until about 4 a.m. as police worked the scene.

Another 19-year-old man was also wounded in the shooting. Police said he was shot in the lower right leg and was taken to Advocate Trinity Hospital where his condition stabilized.

Thursday morning, Calhoun's mother and younger sister cried as Harris recalled times when he would bring his stepson to preseason Bulls games. Calhoun loved basketball, Harris said.

The oldest of two, Calhoun had attended Chicago Vocational High School but did not finish his senior year. Harris said the teen worked with a temp agency and had plans to go back to school to support his 5-year-old son.

"He was lovable. He was a charmer," Harris said. "He might have just got caught up in some negative things, but he was a good kid."

Neighbors described Calhoun as respectful. One woman said she remembered he would always hold the door open for her and help her with her groceries.

Harris, 49, said police may find Calhoun's killer but he also knows they may not. He said there are so many factors, like the "no-snitch rules" or if his stepson's killer was "sloppy."

Harris said, so far, police have not told the family anything.

"They didn't tell me how many times he was shot. They didn't give me a motive, anything," Harris said.

Harris repeated again and again Thursday that Calhoun's death felt "like a dream" and has left him wondering when things will change for young people in the city.

"It needs to stop," he said. "The young people nowadays, they're so trigger happy. It's like an epidemic."