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Man Charged With Murder of Father Returning From Job Interview

By  Alex Parker  and Emily Morris | November 24, 2013 1:31pm | Updated on November 24, 2013 4:24pm

 Terrence Ghani, 20, is charged in the murder of Phillip Curtis.
Terrence Ghani, 20, is charged in the murder of Phillip Curtis.
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Chicago Police Department

COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTHOUSE — An Auburn Gresham man has been charged in the murder of a 21-year-old father whose family said was coming back from a job interview when he was killed in front of his grandmother's house.

Terrence Ghani, 20, of the 1400 block of West 80th Street, was charged with first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder. He's accused of killing Phillip Curtis, also of Auburn Gresham, authorities said.

About 4:15 p.m. on Nov. 6, Ghani got off the bus at 87th Street and Loomis Avenue and bumped into the shoulder of a witness who knew Ghani because they had argued before, Assistant State's Attorney Jacqueline Kwilos said in a bond hearing Sunday.

Ghani kept walking and saw Curtis, Kwilso said. He was also about to bump him in his shoulder when they began "exchanging words," according to Kwilos.

Ghani then walked away, Kwilos said, and the witness and Curtis went into a nearby gas station. 

The two left the gas station, according to Kwilos, and headed towards Curtis' grandmother's house in the 8700 block of South Loomis Avenue. They came across Ghani and others on a porch, Kwilos said.

When Ghani saw them, he took a gun out of his waistband and fired, Kwilos said. He shot Curtis multiple times in his body and neck, Kwilos said. No one else was reported shot, according to police.

Curtis, of the 8600 block of South Marshfield Avenue, was taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center and pronounced dead at 5:25 p.m., according to the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office.

The witness told cops about Ghani, and he was arrested Friday, Kwilos said. The shooting was also partially caught on video, according to Kwilos.

Kwilos said Ghani is currently on probation for a charge of marijuana possession with intent to deliver.

Cook County Judge James Brown ordered Ghani held without bail.

Curtis' family said earlier this month that the father of two 1-year-old daughters had long wanted to leave the South Side with his family. Curtis was returning from a job interview when he was shot, his grandmother said.

His mother, Bilentra Murdock, said she warned her son about the dangers of walking and taking the bus all over the city, but he never listened.

"He always said since he wasn't a gang banger no one would bother him," Murdock said. "I told him that's not the world we live in."