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Chicago closes 2012 with 506 homicides; three fatal shootings so far this year

The scene where 20-year-old Octavius Lamb was first Chicago homicide victim 2013 an alley 700 block North Noble Street. Tuesday

The scene where 20-year-old Octavius Lamb was the first Chicago homicide victim of 2013 in an alley in the 700 block of North Noble Street. Tuesday, January 1, 2013. I Brian Jackson~Sun-Times

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Updated: February 3, 2013 6:19AM

Chicago closed out 2012 with 506 homicides, a 16 percent increase from the previous year.

Meanwhile, the city opened New Year’s Day with three homicides and a dozen other people wounded in gun violence.

In 2012, Chicago recorded 506 homicides — the first time since 2008 the number of killings topped 500 and the second time since 2003.

In 87 percent of Chicago’s 2012 homicides, the deceased died from a gunshot wound, said Melissa Stratton, spokeswoman for the Chicago Police Department.

In the first homicide of 2013, a 20-year-old man was killed in West Town, police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office said.

Octavius Dontrell Lamb, 20, was shot in the throat in the 700 block of North Noble around 3:45 a.m. Tuesday. Lamb was pronounced dead at Northwestern Memorial Hospital at 4:16 a.m., according to the medical examiner’s office.

Three friends in the neighborhood said that Lamb, a strapping 6-foot-2-inch young man was a good friend and a loyal son who helped his mother by working as a dishwasher at Quay restaurant in Chicago. A spokesperson at Quay confirmed Lamb’s employment.

“He was a great person,” said Dannielle Serrano, 18, a former neighbor who described Lamb as virtually part of her family, since he visited so often.

Lamb was walking to Serrano’s home after work at 3 a.m. Tuesday but said he was going to stop first at the local Marathon gas station to buy some items he needed.

Besides Lamb, Kevin Jemison, 29, was shot in the head about 2:45 p.m. Tuesday afternoon, in the 4500 block of South Champlain Avenue in the Grand Boulevard neighborhood, authorities said. Jemison, of the 4700 block of South Michigan Avenue, was taken to University of Chicago Medical Center where he died less than an hour later.

Just before 5 p.m., Devonta Grisson, 19, was shot in the chest during an apparent drive-by in the Southwest Side Gage Park neighborhood, in the 5800 block of South Sacramento Avenue, police said. Grisson, of the 6700 block of South Artesian Avenue, was dead at the scene, according to the medical examiner’s office.

Among other shootings Tuesday, according to authorities:

About 1:15 am., a 29-year-old man was shot in the mouth and shoulder after a fight broke out at a bar in the 5000 block of West Madison in the Austin neighborhood. The 29-year-old man was allegedly involved in the fight, which saw another man get hit on the head with a beer bottle and was shot as he left the bar.

About 2 a.m., a 22-year-old man was shot in both legs and the scrotum during a fight at a house party in the 9700 block of South Beverly.

About 2:40 a.m., a man was shot in the stomach and critically injured in the 11700 block of South Sangamon in the Auburn Gresham neighborhood. Also around 2:40 a.m., a 17-year-old boy was shot in the arm near North and Kedzie avenues in the Humboldt Park neighborhood.

About 2:45 a.m., a 20-year-old man was shot while he was on the front porch of a home in the 5700 block South Laflin Street in the West Englewood neighborhood. He was hit in the right forearm and refused medical treatment.

About 3:50 a.m., a teenage girl and a man were shot outside in the 3800 block of South Wells Street in the Fuller Park neighborhood. The 17-year-old girl was shot in the leg, Greer said, and the 30-year-old man was shot in the back.

About 6:10 a.m., a man was in “grave” condition and a woman was critically injured in a shooting in the 5900 block of South Maplewood Avenue. A 28-year-old man was shot in the head and chest, and a 20-year-old woman was shot in the face and back. Both were taken to Stroger Hospital.

At 4:18 p.m., a 21-year-old man was driving in the 4700 block of South Loomis Boulevard in the Back of the Yards neighborhood when two unknown males opened fire. The driver was shot four times in the back, arm, chest and leg. He was taken in critical condition to Stroger Hospital.

Around 4:30 p.m., two teenage boys were shot in West Town — the same neighborhood where Lamb was shot — in the 2600 block of West Chicago Avenue. Both were in “stable” condition at Stroger Hospital.

Contributing: LeeAnn Shelton

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