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Man charged in 7-year-old girl’s murder

Jerrell Dorsey / phofrom Chicago Police.

Jerrell Dorsey / photo from Chicago Police.

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Updated: July 1, 2012 4:46AM

A 26-year-old gang member has been charged with the fatal shooting of 7-year-old Heaven Sutton.

Jerrell Dorsey, of the 1600 block of North Laramie Avenue, was charged with one count of first-degree murder and one count of aggravated battery with a firearm, according to police News Affairs.

Dorsey, 26, is scheduled to appear in bond court later Sunday, the release said.

The young girl was murdered after two men approached a group of people in the 1700 block of North Luna about 10:40 p.m. Wednesday and opened fire, police said. A 19-year-old man also was shot in the ankle.

His arrest on Saturday brought tears to the eyes of the girl’s mother.

“It made me feel a little bit better,” Ashake Banks said Saturday. Banks said she “was thankful that the Chicago Police Department [and] neighbors acted so quickly. ... I can’t stop thanking them.”

Heaven was gunned down after she had just finished selling candy under a canopy on the lawn near her home. Police say an ongoing feud between warring gangs — the 4 Corner Hustlers and the Maniac Insane Vice Lords — is to blame for the stray shot that hit Heaven in the back.

On Saturday afternoon, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office released a statement announcing a “person of interest” had been arrested for the murder.

“I want to thank the Austin community for working with the Chicago Police Department to provide leads in the shooting death of seven-year-old Heaven Sutton,” the mayor said in the statement. “No parent should have to endure this type of pain. Bringing Heaven’s shooter to justice will not bring her back, but I hope it will provide some level of solace to her family.”

Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy released his own statement a few hours later Saturday.

“While no family should have to endure the horrific and senseless loss of a young child, it is my hope that it will give Heaven’s family some measure of solace to know we will not rest until we bring the person responsible for this tragedy to justice,” the city’s top cop said.

A memorial service for Heaven has been scheduled for 10 a.m. Friday at St. Mark International Christian Church, 832 N. Leclaire.

Banks also said “thank you so much” to the mayor.

Earlier, Banks told the Sun-Times she was “not planning to go to sleep until [the gunman’s] in jail. He took her life, so he should do life. I want him brought to justice so we can just rest and I can just know my kids are safe.”

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