CHICAGO — When Chicago police asked the father of slain 9-year-old Tyshawn Lee to help catch his son’s killer he didn’t just decline to help, the reputed gang member told investigators to “f--- off,” sources told DNAinfo Chicago.
Police said they believe Tyshawn was executed because of the gang affiliation of his father, Pierre Stokes — who told reporters police have harassed him “trying to see if I’ll get mad, if I’m gonna do something. They want to lock me up."
Stokes is a reputed member of the Gangster Disciple faction “Killa Ward” that police sources say has been at war with the “Terra Dome” faction of the Black P Stone street gang.
While it’s unclear what the gang beef is about, a source said the feud has been stoked by social media threats and resulted in a string of several retaliatory shootings dating to August.
Stokes “knows what this is about. He’s not cooperating,” a source said.
Stokes, however, told DNAinfo Chicago there is no reason his son would be shot in retaliation for any gang shooting. He said those recent shootings did not involve him and if someone did want to harm him, it would be easy enough to do.
"That don't got nothing to do with me," Stokes said. "It definitely don't got nothing to do with my son. He's 9. He ain't 18."
Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi confirmed investigators have identified “people of interest” and made considerable progress building a case in the last 72 hours that they are optimistic will lead to homicide charges.
The main thing standing in the way of arresting Tyshawn’s killer remains the no-snitch code of silence on the street.
Investigators have talked to people who are too afraid for their safety to fully cooperate with the investigation.
St. Sabina pastor the Rev. Michael Pfleger has raised a $55,000 reward for witnesses who provide information that leads to charges against Tyshawn’s killer. Sun-Times columnist Michael Sneed reported that "Chi-raq" director Spike Lee is set to add “a hefty donation” to the reward.
Pfleger has even offered to personally pay for someone to relocate if they provide information that leads to an arrest.
"There comes a point when your fear is either going to paralyze you, or your fear is going to motivate you," Pfleger said. "We've got to get to a point where our conscience overrides our emotions.
"There used to be a street code. Lines were drawn. If you did [kill a kid], the streets took care of you," Pfleger said. "That line has been removed. We're here today putting the line back."
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