Mom of girl charged in murder says uncle should ‘rot in jail’
BY MITCH DUDEK, JON SEIDEL, RUMMANA HUSSAIN AND BECKY SCHLIKERMAN Staff Reporters April 30, 2014 1:25PM
Friends of Chicago Citizens for Change release a balloon for 14-year-old Edina Martin during a vigil in the 900 block of West Garfield Boulevard in the Back of the Yards neighborhood Wednesday, April 30, 2014. | Jessica Koscielniak / Sun-Times
Updated: June 2, 2014 12:53PM
A 14-year-old girl accused in a fatal shooting got the gun from her uncle, prosecutors say — and the girl’s mother said the uncle should “rot in jail” for his alleged role in the crime.
Donnell Flora, 25, who uses a wheelchair since he was paralyzed in a shooting in 2010, took a bus to deliver the gun to his niece on Monday, prosecutors said Wednesday.
He met her in the 900 block of West Garfield Boulevard, where Endia Martin, 14, was fatally shot, prosecutors said.
He brought the .38-caliber revolver to the girl knowing there would be a fight, prosecutors said.
The accused shooter’s mother said her daughter was goaded into pulling the trigger.
The mother, whom the Sun-Times is not identifying because her daughter has been charged as a juvenile, said her daughter felt pressured to use the gun to settle what has been described by police and people who knew both girls as a feud over a boy that began on Facebook.
The mother had yet to speak with Endia’s family, but she said on Wednesday evening: “Me and my daughter send condolences.” Her daughter was being held in juvenile detention.
“She’s so sorry,” said the girl’s mother, who was remorseful and, at times, defensive.
She said the feud had escalated to the point that someone threatened to lay her daughter “where her daddy’s at” — a reference to the girl’s father, who died when she was 9 months old.
“It’s a shame that the little girl had to die,” the mother said.
She says her daughter “feels bad too.”
A judge ordered Flora held on $3 million bail. Flora, of the 8300 block of South Buffalo, is charged with murder, attempted murder and aggravated battery with a firearm.
At Flora’s bond hearing, Assistant State’s Attorney Jamie Santini said the girl, revolver in hand, got into a scuffle before the shooting. Someone tried to knock the gun away, and a 16-year-old girl swung a chain with a lock on the end of it.
Moments later, shots were fired as Endia fled, and a bullet hit her in the back. A 16-year-old girl was hit in the arm.
Santini said the gun was passed back to Flora but it ultimately ended up in the hands of a 17-year-old boy who was charged Tuesday with hiding the weapon.
Flora has two previous felony convictions for possession of a stolen motor vehicle. He also has a 2011 conviction for possession of marijuana.
Two other people have also been charged in connection with the shooting.
Initial reports indicated that the gun used in the shooting had been reported stolen, police said. However, 34-year-old Robert James is now charged with falsely reporting the gun stolen and then illegally selling it to another person, according to a statement from police Thursday.
James, of the 1300 block of East Hyde Park Boulevard, is charged with one felony count of disorderly conduct for falsely reporting an offense and one felony count of selling a firearm without a valid FOID card.
Police said Vandetta Redwood, 32, was at the scene of the shooting and failed to call police or take any action to stop or prevent the confrontation,. She also later allegedly impeded the investigation by denying that she was there.
Redwood, of the 6500 block of South Green, was charged with one felony count each of mob action and obstruction of justice, police said.
Both Redwood and James are scheduled to appear in bond court later Thursday, police said.
Endia and the girl accused of killing her graduated last year from the same grade school before attending different high schools, relatives said. Endia’s stepfather said she dreamed of attending college, joining the Navy and traveling the world.
The mother of the girl charged with murder said her daughter wants to be a nurse and work with the elderly.
Dontrell Robinson, 15, a rapper who goes by Yung Trell, said Endia was like his sister and the two hung out the day before the shooting.
“It was just a normal day . . . If she really thought there was a problem, she would have probably told me,” he said.
The Kenwood Academy High School student said he misses his best friend, whom some called Tiny.
He said Endia “loved everybody.”
“If she was close to you, she always had your back,” he said.
At a memorial gathering for Endia on Wednesday evening at the site of the shooting, a cousin said she was still in shock, especially because the death involved two girls and a gun, and not two boys. “Everyone misses her. I still can’t believe it.”
Relatives of other people slain in gun violence attended the vigil and demanded changes in gun laws to prevent such tragedies.