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Man Killed His Girlfriend's Ex After Argument, Prosecutors Say

By Emily Morris | December 28, 2013 1:34pm | Updated on December 29, 2013 5:19pm
 Shaughnessy Simms Jr. is accused of killing Jernale Richardson Friday morning, police said.
Shaughnessy Simms Jr. is accused of killing Jernale Richardson Friday morning, police said.
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Chicago Police Department

COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTHOUSE — A man killed his girlfriend's former lover during an argument after he showed up at an Austin apartment where the couple lived early Friday, prosecutors said.

Shaughnessy Simms Jr., 31, of the 5900 block of West Midway Park, was charged with first-degree murder.

Judge James Brown ordered Simms held without bail during a hearing on Sunday.

He's accused of fatally shooting 36-year-old Jernale Richardson, who had a 7-year-old child with Simms' girlfriend, prosecutors and police said. At the time, Simms had been living with his girlfriend for three years, according to court documents.

Simms and his girlfriend were at home with four other people when the couple got into an argument about Simms dating other women, Assistant State's Attorney Kingsley Sawyers said.

They argued about this for about two hours, according to Sawyers.

Simms' girlfriend then went into her room, where she had a phone conversation with Richardson, Sawyers said. She and Richardson hung up, and the girlfriend received a call from her mother, according to Sawyers.

Simms asked his girlfriend about the phone calls, Sawyers said, and about 45 minutes later there was a knock on the door, Sawyers said. It was Richardson.

Simms answered the door, and Richardson told him that he wanted to speak with Simms' girlfriend, Sawyers said.

She and one of the witnesses went outside to speak with Richardson at the bottom of the stairs while Simms stood in the doorway, according to Sawyers.

Another witness, who was still in the apartment, saw Simms go outside and stand at the top of the stairs with a large gun between his belt and pants, Sawyers said.

Simms allegedly started arguing with Richardson. He called Richardson names, and told him he wasn't taking care of his child and shouldn't come to the apartment, according to Sawyers.

Simms' girlfriend went up to the top of the stairs and tried to calm him down as Simms continued calling Richardson names and telling him to come upstairs, Sawyers said.

Richardson eventually started to walk up, and Simms allegedly pulled out the gun and fired in the air. All the while, his girlfriend tried to get Simms to relax, according to Sawyers.

But Simms wouldn't calm down. He pointed the gun at Richardson and shot him once in his arm, Sawyers said. Richardson fell to the ground.

Simms walked down the stairs, stood over Richardson, and shot him two more times, Sawyers said. One of those bullets hit Richardson on the top of his head. The shooting happened about 3:40 a.m., cops said.

A witness saw Simms go into his bedroom with the gun in his hands and then come back out with the gun before leaving his apartment, Sawyers said.

Richardson, of the 5100 block of West Ohio Street, was pronounced dead at the scene at 4 a.m., according to the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office. An autopsy showed he died of multiple bullet wounds.

Simms was arrested in Freeport, about 30 miles west of Rockford, later that day, Sawyers said. Witnesses identified Simms as the one who shot Richardson, and Simms admitted to authorities that he shot him, Sawyers said.