ROGERS PARK — The teen who killed a 22-year-old man for posting negative comments about slain rapper Young Pappy online may have been the intended target of a shooting early May that injured no one, but left car windows shattered along Columbia Avenue on the eve of graduation at Loyola University, Rogers Park District Cmdr. Roberto Nieves said Tuesday.
Nieves helped connect the dots of several recent shootings for residents who expressed concern over not having "resolution" after violent acts.
One incident in particular involved the death of Clifton A. Frye, 22, of the 1400 block of West Farwell Avenue, who was shot by 17-year-old Germel Dossie June 1 outside of Gale Elementary School at the intersection of Jonquil and Ashland avenues, police said.
Later that day, another man was also shot.
Nieves never mentioned Dossie by name, but said the same individual arrested for the June 1 murder may have also been the target of a drive-by shooting May 5 in the 1200 block of West Columbia Avenue, a half-block from Starbucks to the east and Lazarus Playlot to the west, that lit up the block the night before some residents were due to graduate from Loyola.
During a community meeting Tuesday night at the Loyola Park Field House, Ald. Joe Moore (49th) and Nieves, along with members of his staff, discussed violence and safety in the neighborhood, saying while the area has seen some improvements, there is still "somewhat of a gang problem" in the city's Rogers Park police district.
As Nieves told residents in the Foster Police District in Edgewater during a June 2 community meeting, "social media thuggery" was fueling much of the "hatred" between gang members.
He also said he and other criminal justice officials — including a social service worker, CAPS facilitator and an executive officer — had visited Dossie's home before the June 1 shooting after identifying him as a "driver of violence."
During those meetings, Nieves said he and others let offenders know that if they continued to break the law, their sentences would be enhanced.
He said the officials also offer the people they targeted, like Dossie, the help and support they need to turn their lives around.
But it's not enough to just visit "violence drivers" — they have to "want to change themselves," or the program won't work, he said.
Young Pappy, aka Shaquon Thomas, was also visited by former Rogers Park District Cmdr. Thomas Waldera before his shooting death in Uptown on May 29, he said. Thomas had twice been the target of previous shootings that left two innocent victims dead.
No one is currently in custody for his murder.
By the time Nieves and his team visited Dossie's home, he was "already at a certain level in his gang grouping" and had already been "elevated" to ranks where it was unlikely Dossie would cease his gang involvement, Nieves said.
His parents had at one point attempted to enroll him in a private school and "send him out of town," before he shot Frye, Nieves said.
Dossie was charged as an adult with aggravated battery with a firearm and attempted first-degree murder.
Nieves said while there might still be violence in the future, activity in the area near Lazarus Park should largely quiet down heading into the summer.
"Summer, you know, it brings out the best in some and the worst in others," Nieves said.
He said 10 new bike officers will patrol the Rogers Park district this summer, primarily focused on the community's east end from the Broadway and Sheridan area all the way to the lake for an "enhanced presence." There are two bike officers patrolling year-round, he said.
Nieves also said 55 guns have been either recovered or turned in by the public in the Rogers Park district since Jan. 1.
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