#39 – Man’s charged with two separate shootings while AWOL on burglary charge

Simmie Morris | CPD

In our ongoing coverage of people who’ve been charged with shooting, killing, or trying to kill people in Chicago while on felony bond, Simmie Morris claims a special place.

Today, he becomes the 42nd person accused of committing such a crime in 2020 and the 39th person accused of doing it in 2021. Here’s how it played out.

On December 19, Morris was AWOL on recognizance bonds for residential burglary and possessing a stolen motor vehicle when he and another man allegedly tried to rob two people at a gas station in Washington Park. Prosecutors said Morris pointed a gun at the victims while the accomplice told them to “give up your sh*t” and tried to get into their car.

But one of the victims drove off with the vehicle, causing the accomplice to fall out. Morris, prosecutors said, opened fire on the car. One round went through the front passenger window, but neither victim was injured, according to the allegations.

Video shows Morris, 19, wearing distinctive clothing and jewelry while firing the gun, prosecutors said. Detectives would later identify Morris by matching the clothes and jewelry to items he was seen wearing in an Instagram post, according to prosecutors.

Morris was still on the loose when the new year rang in. And, six days later, Morris allegedly opened fire on another driver as they traveled on the Dan Ryan Expressway near 67th Street.

The other driver was not injured, but Morris allegedly crashed his car and fled the scene. Illinois State Police troopers arrested him when he showed up at a hospital for treatment of a relatively minor gunshot wound.

Prosecutors initially charged him with aggravated discharge of a firearm for the expressway incident. The case has now been upgraded to attempted murder. Prosecutors subsequently charged him with aggravated discharge of a firearm and unlawful use of a weapon in the gas station incident, too.

Morris was convicted of aggravated battery as a juvenile three times — twice in 2015 and once in 2016, prosecutors said.

He is being held without bail.

Editor’s note: This report continues our coverage of individuals who have been charged with murder, attempted murder, or trying to kill a person while on bond for a pending felony case. CWBChicago began our series of reports in November 2019 after Cook County Chief Judge Timothy Evans publicly stated, “we haven’t had any horrible incidents occur” under the court’s bond reform initiative.

The actual number of murders and shootings committed by people on felony bail is undoubtedly much higher than the numbers seen here. Since 2017, CPD has made arrests in just 4% of shootings and 31% of murders, according to the city’s data.  You can support CWBChicago’s work by becoming a subscriber today.

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