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Girl Killed in Chicago Shooting, Another Wounded

Police are interviewing a person of interest after a 14-year-old girl was killed on her way home from school and a second girl was wounded Monday afternoon in a shooting in the Back of the Yards neighborhood.

The shooting happened about 4:30 p.m. in the 900 block of West Garfield Boulevard, said Police News Affairs Officer Thomas Sweeney. One girl was shot in the back and later died at Comer Children's Hospital, while a second was shot in the arm and taken to St. Bernard Hospital and Healthcare Center, where her condition had stabilized, he said. The second girl was 16 years old, police said.

The slain victim, Endia Martin, a freshman at Tilden Career Community Academy High School, lived around the corner from where she was shot, her family said.

Detectives are questioning someone in connection with the shooting.

The shooting was preceded by a confrontation involving a group of teenagers, Sweeney said. One of those in the group had a weapon and fired, striking the two victims, Sweeney said.

The Cook County medical examiner's office had been notified of the death, but was not releasing information.

Endia was "14-years-old, beautiful, nice spirit, active in sports. She loved music, loved to dance," said her stepfather, Kent Kennedy.

Endia was on her way home from school not far from her house near Garfield Boulevard and Morgan Street when a girl from another school approached her, according to her stepfather, who was with many people were gathered Monday evening at the Comer emergency room.

Following the shooting, which took place in front of a three-story frame home on Garfield Boulevard, Endia lay on the ground, not moving, witnesses told WGN-TV. The other girl fled behind the home, and made her way to the hospital. Later, as police cordoned off the area around the home, several evidence markers could be seen in the grass and on the home's front porch.

Endia's family believes the dispute that led to her death may have originated on Facebook.

"They had words and she gunned our daughter down," Kennedy said. "For what? What reason would another girl gun down another child?"

"It's senseless," Kennedy said. "Kids are dying so young nowadays. It's senseless. Parents shouldn't have to bury no child."

He said the family moved Endia from one school to another closer to home recently to keep her safe.

"No place in Chicago is safe for teenagers nowadays," he said. "No place is safe."

The circumstances leading up to the shooting were not immediately available from police and police were investigating.

A family member had said Endia attended Hyde Park Academy High School, but her stepfather and godmother both later said that was mistaken, and said she was attending Tilden.

Endia and the 16-year-old were among at least five people wounded in shootings in the city this evening.

Copyright 2014 - Chicago Tribune

McClatchy-Tribune News Service