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Funky Buddha Shooter Was Working at the Bar, Sources Say

By  Stephanie Lulay and Erica Demarest | December 5, 2014 7:44am 

 Donald Shedrick is charged with a Nov. 9 shooting at the Funky Buddha Lounge in River West.
Donald Shedrick is charged with a Nov. 9 shooting at the Funky Buddha Lounge in River West.
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Chicago Police Department

RIVER WEST — After surveillance video showing a Nov. 9 shooting at the Funky Buddha Lounge was released, multiple sources now say that the shooter caught on camera worked at the bar.

Donald Shedrick, 47, of Auburn Gresham, was charged with aggravated discharge of a firearm and ordered held on $150,000 bail by Judge Maria Kuriakos Ciesil on Tuesday in connection with the shooting at the lounge, 728 W. Grand Ave.

Prosecutors said Shedrick fired five or six shots outside the club at 3:20 a.m. on Nov. 9. One bullet hit someone's coat, but that person wasn't seriously injured, prosecutors said.

Assistant State's Attorney Lorraine Scaduto said the shooting stemmed from a fight in the club.

 Donald Shedrick, charged with Nov. 9 shooting at Funky Buddha Lounge in River West
Donald Shedrick, charged with Nov. 9 shooting at Funky Buddha Lounge in River West
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Chicago Police Department

Two other men were charged in connection with the shooting. Henry Lovelady, 27, of North Lawndale, and Cortney Johnson, 28, of South Shore, were charged with aggravated battery in a public place.

Johnson told police that he worked at the Funky Buddha. Shedrick, the alleged shooter, told police he was unemployed and a gang member, according to court documents.

But three sources, including a current Funky Buddha Lounge employee, said Shedrick did work as a security guard at the lounge. Because of Shedrick's alleged gang ties, all sources asked to remain anonymous.

Shedrick's Facebook profile lists his occupation as "former head of security," but does not say where he worked.

In a complaint about the Funky Buddha's security staff, a 2012 Yelp review also specifically calls out "the big light-skinned black guy with the mohawk" working security at the bar who "really looks like that one guy from Sons of Anarchy."

Nick Stavropoulos, co-owner of the Funky Buddha, would not say Wednesday whether the shooter was a patron or employee of the bar. Stavropoulos did not return calls Thursday.

A low-resolution video of the Nov. 9 shooting shows a man standing near the club's entrance who appears to open the door for the shooter and at no point attempts to stop him, take cover or flee.

The 77-second video appears to show a man walking on the sidewalk in front of the lounge, then entering a "wind blocker" vestibule attached to the front entrance of the lounge.

The man raises a gun and appears to fire shots across busy Grand Avenue while standing in the entrance, and then points the gun from the vestibule door again and appears to fire another shot.

A short time later, the shooter casually leaves the vestibule with another man who was inside the wind blocker. They then both walk out of view.

During the entire incident, the third man seen standing next to the club's entrance, who appeared to open the door for the shooter, never tries to stop him.

The Nov. 9 surveillance video was provided to DNAinfo Chicago after a second shooting near the Funky Buddha caused River West neighbors to call for the longtime bar's closing. 

The second shooting happened about 3 a.m., and about 540 people have signed a neighborhood petition asking Ald. Walter Burnett Jr. (27th) to shut the bar down.

The source providing the video footage has requested anonymity.

The condo owner hit by a bullet in the Nov. 9 shooting moved his family out of the building after the shooting.

"It's too dangerous to live there right now," he said earlier this week.

In 2011, Shedrick was charged with aggravated fleeing while causing bodily injury when he rammed a police car, injuring a police officer. In August 2012, Shedrick was found guilty and sentenced to two years probation and community service, according to court records.

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