MOUNT GREENWOOD —The family of Joshua Beal and Black Lives Matter Chicago held a press conference Sunday night, asking for support to help pay for the funeral of the 25-year-old man who was fatally shot by an off-duty police officer in Mount Greenwood.
The shooting occurred around 3 p.m. Saturday after a traffic altercation in front of the Chicago Fire Department station in the 3100 block of West 111th Street. Joshua Beal of Indianapolis was later pronounced dead at Christ Hospital.
Kofi Ademola of Black Lives Matter Chicago began the press conference at the Calumet District Police Department. The group demanded that charges be filed against the officer involved in the shooting.
They also asked for the immediate release of Michael Beal — Joshua's brother who is being held at the station at 727 E. 111th St. in Pullman.
"We are in a situation where they [the Beal family] need support. They need love, and that's what Black Lives Matter Chicago and other organizations are here to do for them," Ademola said.
Rachel Williams of Black Youth Project 100 then spoke about the fundraiser to cover Beal's funeral costs, and how she and others felt threatened Saturday night when they went to help Beal's family as they waited in a Burger King at 11020 S. Kedzie Ave. in Mount Greenwood after the shooting.
She said the group was met with racial slurs by passersby, several of whom carried bats and knives. Williams went on to call Mount Greenwood, "a police utopia."
"This is white America in its full unedited, unfiltered hate," she said.
Ademola distanced himself and Black Lives Matter from a protest held earlier Sunday in Mount Greenwood. He said that the heated exchange was organized by another group, and Black Lives Matter Chicago spent the day instead consoling the Beal family.
Meanwhile, a woman who identified herself as Joshua Beal's sister spoke through tears as she described her late brother as "a father, a family man — who loved his kids and his family."
"The people that are there to protect and serve us killed my brother," she said. "Everybody needs to stop. Put the guns down."
The Independent Police Review Authority is investigating the incident, and the officers involved will be placed on administrative duties for 30 days, police said.
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