#17: 16-year-old charged with murder, robbery in alleged pot dealer rip-off

A 16-year-old boy was charged with first-degree murder and robbery over the weekend as prosecutors accused him of helping kill and rob a pot dealer in Bronzeville last month. At the time of the alleged murder, Daquan Griffin was already facing another robbery charge and a gun charge in juvenile court, prosecutors said. He is now the 17th person accused of killing, trying to kill, or shooting someone in Chicago this year while charged in another pending felony case.

On March 10, another juvenile emailed the pot dealer and arranged to meet on the 3700 block of South Indiana to complete a transaction, prosecutors said Saturday. The dealer pulled up to the rendezvous with another person in the passenger seat around 2:15 p.m. Griffin and the other juvenile walked up to the car as the dealer held a backpack containing cannabis on his lap, according to prosecutors.

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Griffin stood outside the driver’s window as the other juvenile got into the back seat and immediately began shooting the dealer, prosecutors said. The front seat passenger tried to cover the driver’s body with her own and suffered a graze wound to her left arm, according to the allegations. The driver, shot in the chest, died.

Both Griffin and the gunman began to run away, but Griffin turned back, reached through the car’s window, and wrestled the backpack away from the front passenger, prosecutors said.

Surveillance videos allegedly show the two suspects leaving the area and entering the nearby apartment where Griffin lives. A police officer familiar with Griffin identified him from the video, and the victim’s passenger later identified Griffin as the person who took the backpack, prosecutors said.

When police executed a search warrant Friday at the apartment Griffin shares with his mother and father, he had two loaded handguns in his pants pockets, according to prosecutors. Ballistics tests found a “high correlation” between one of the recovered guns and casings investigators found in the back seat of the victim’s car, prosecutors said.

Griffin has pending juvenile cases for armed robbery with a firearm and unlawful use of a weapon, an assistant state’s attorney said during a bond court hearing Saturday. He’s now charged with first-degree murder, armed robbery by discharging a firearm, and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon in the new case. Judge John Lyke ordered him held without bail.

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