WEST TOWN — A Little Village father was shot and killed while stopped at a red light at the Division and Western intersection early Monday, police said.
William Villa was northbound in an SUV in the 1100 block of North Western Avenue when he stopped at a red light at 2:27 a.m., officials said. Three women were in the car with him.
A dark colored car pulled up next to the man's car and someone inside shot him in his head, said Officer Laura Amezaga, a Chicago Police spokeswoman.
He was taken to Stroger Hospital and pronounced dead at 2:57 a.m., Amezaga said.
The Cook County Medical Examiner's Office said the 25-year-old Villa lived on Drake Avenue in Little Village.
Leana Allen, 24, was waiting for the bus Monday morning near the crime scene to get to her job at Chicago Youth Programs, a nonprofit group that works with youths in high poverty areas to help them stay in school through graduation.
"I don't have the words. It's really tragic when something like this happens in your neighborhood," Allen said.
Villa's family was in shock Monday, his mother and father were too distraught to comment, according to an uncle.
"It's devastating," said Gabriella Martinez, 25, the mother of Villa's 7-year-old daughter. The two started dating while students at Farragut High School. Though they've been separated for five years, they still raised their daughter together. She said she spoke to him just hours before his death about Monday's plans for their little girl.
"He was supposed to pick her up at 4 p.m. from camp today and take her to the clinic because she has a cough," she said. "My daughter does know [about her dad's death]. She is in shock. She is aware but is only seven years old."
Police said Villa was a gang member, but had no further details on a possible motive in the slaying.
Martinez said she does not know any of the circumstances surrounding Villa's murder or know the three women police said were in the car with him at the time of the shooting.
But she wanted to set one thing straight: "[He] was not a gang banger," she said.
Villa was previously charged with two misdemeanor offenses, both of which were dropped, county records show.
A family member who identified himself as Villa's uncle said he was the oldest of three boys.
Contributing: Erica Demarest, Alex Nitkin
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