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2 questioned in shooting of teen killed hours after sister heard Obama’s speech

Janay McFarlane 18 was killed late Friday just hours after her younger sister was among group teens who were onstage

Janay McFarlane, 18, was killed late Friday just hours after her younger sister was among a group of teens who were onstage as President Barack Obama gave a speech in Chicago on violence.

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Updated: March 18, 2013 7:16AM



Two people are being questioned in the shooting death of a Janay McFarlane, who was shot to death in North Chicago hours after her little sister sat just feet away as President Barack Obama spoke in Chicago Friday about the violence plaguing the nation.

Community members gave police information that led to the two people who are being question by police and the Lake County State’s Attorney’s office, according to North Chicago police. No charges have been filed as of Sunday afternoon.

McFarlane was shot to death hours after her little sister, Destini, 14, sat just feet away as President Barack Obama as he spoke in Chicago Friday about the violence plaguing the nation.

“I really feel like somebody cut a part of my heart out,” said McFarlane’s mother, Angela Blakely.

McFarlane, 18, was in North Chicago visiting friends and family. She was with a friend late Friday night when a bullet meant for a friend struck McFarlane, Blakely said.

McFarlane was shot once in the head around 11:30 p.m. in an alley in the 1300 block of Jackson Street in the far north suburb, Lake County Coroner Thomas Rudd said.

Destini was part of a group of teens who sat on the stage behind the president as he spoke at Hyde Park Career Academy, pushing for new gun legislation and paying homage to 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton, the South Side girl whose killing made her a symbol of the cost of the violence that’s plagued Chicago.

Destini, a freshman at Hyde Park, said she can’t stop thinking about what the president said.

“Barack Obama said teenagers are killing each other,” the teen said Saturday night. “He was saying we need to cut down on street violence.”

McFarlane had been a student at Hyde Park but left after she got pregnant, according to her mother, who said she was on track to graduate from an alternative school this spring and hoped to make a career in culinary arts.

Blakely said her daughter had been affected by the shooting death of Pendleton.

“She always said after Hadiya Pendleton got killed, ‘Momma that’s so sad,’ ” Blakely said. “She was always touched by any kid that got killed. She was always touched by mothers who couldn’t be there for their babies because they were gone.”

McFarlane’s 3-month-old son, Jayden, now is without a mother, though Blakely said he has a big, supportive family to help care for him.

“I’m just really, truly just trying to process it ­— knowing that I’m not taking my baby home any more,” Blakely said.

Contributing: Allison Horton, Brian Slodysko, Sam Charles



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