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Man, 26, in custody in connection with shooting of 7-year-old girl

Updated: June 30, 2012 7:50PM

A 26-year-old man is in police custody for the fatal shooting last week of 7-year-old Heaven Sutton in front of her home in the Austin neighborhood, authorities said Saturday.

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

Paramedics took Heaven in critical condition to Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, where she was pronounced dead at 11:16 p.m., according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.

Sources confirmed Saturday that a 26-year-old man from the Near West Side was in police custody in connection with the case, although formal charges had not been filed.

On Saturday afternoon Mayor Rahm Emanuel released a statement saying, “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 Stutton. 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. We cannot lose another innocent child to violence and I will continue to fight to make sure the Chicago Police has the resources it needs to stop the violence.”

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