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Jawan Wright's Family Says Anti-Gay Bullying Led To Shooting: VIDEO


Chicago police are describing the fatal Friday shooting of 18-year Terrance "Jawan" Wright as a robbery. According to them, five men approached Wright, a senior at Banner Academy South, and tried to rob him. Wright fought back and one of the men shot him in the chest. He died soon after.

Wright's family, however, say it's more complicated than a robbery: Wright had just transferred to Banner after being bullied in and out of his old school for being gay; the bullying followed him and they believe it's homophobia, not petty crime, that led to his death.

"I believe they only did that to him because he was gay," Wright's 16-year old brother, Javone, told the local CBS affiliate. A cousin, Kenyatta Rogers, drew a similar conclusion: "They had to kill my cousin because he was gay. That’s crazy."

His grandmother also pointed the finger at homophobia, telling WGN, "I was told the boys were picking on Jawan, Jawan was on his way home and the boys just started picking on him and calling him names so they tried to take Jawan’s book bag. So then Jawan and the boys got to fighting.”

“That’s when police say one of the boys pulled out a gun and killed Jawan," she said.

The family is now asking Chicago police to investigate Wright's death as a hate crime. Two people are reportedly being questioned, but the department is not remarking on whether anti-gay attitudes played a role in Wright's murder.

Watch video of both the CBS and the WGN reports AFTER THE JUMP.

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  1. Their should definitely be a hate crime investigation. Heart breaking story. And particularly tragic for the family, as decisions over what school, or how things could be different can affect the closure process. Also, completely crazy that highschool students -really anybody- can get guns so easily. Another example of our broken gun laws.

    Posted by: anony6 | Oct 21, 2012 11:45:45 AM

  2. So sad.... Really an indictment- as this whole year has been- of Mayor Emanuel's leadership. I've always liked Rahm Emanuel, but he and his team really need to get on this homicide pattern fast.

    RIP Jawan.

    Posted by: scott | Oct 21, 2012 12:01:28 PM

  3. The uncle says "I don't care if he was gay, straight or purple."
    Exactly. How ridiculous the severity of penalty for cold blooded murder seems to depend on whether his murderers knew which.

    Posted by: MarkUs | Oct 21, 2012 12:10:53 PM

  4. just like it's ridiculous that GOP believes "everyone is created equal" and that freedom liberty and justice depends on whether or not you're gay, or straight.

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | Oct 21, 2012 12:36:12 PM

  5. Condolences to Jawan's family and friends. May Jawan rest in peace.

    Posted by: jamal49 | Oct 21, 2012 1:01:52 PM

  6. Markus, you disingenuous twit, the difference between a hate crime and other crimes is that they are terroristic in nature, intended to strike terror into a group, not just harm an individual. I thought you conservatives were ALL about the War On Terror, or does that only count when a conservative (social or political) ISN'T the perpetrator? I know how many of you are secret fans of Timothy McVeigh...

    I don't know if the crime against Jawan Wright was a hate crime or not, but if he was chosen ONLY because of his sexuality the larger intent was to make sure ALL gays know they are not welcome and their lives are in danger, to TERRORIZE them. If you rule out theft, and somehow I doubt they were after school supplies, and there was no interpersonal conflict that motivated this, then a hate crime is what you're left with.

    Posted by: Caliban | Oct 21, 2012 2:47:41 PM

  7. hate crimes are not just about punishment, but also the ability to track patterns of crime and potentially defusing future incidents

    Posted by: MaddM@ | Oct 21, 2012 3:45:04 PM

  8. Black and American Indian homosexuals tend to commit more crimes. Don't know if this kid's 1/2 American Indian but if he is, then this dead queer won't commit any scalpings.

    Posted by: snowisfun | Oct 22, 2012 7:12:29 AM

  9. 1 thing to add regarding MEHEW Wayne Shepard. METHEW Wayne Shepard was some1 who would cut in line ahead of a woman with small kids in a restaurant. METHEW Wayne Shepard was a moody, obnoxious, selfish junky who only cared about himself and METHEW Wayne Shepard once falsely accused some1 of a crime he didn't do. Yet homosexual and lesbian groups see nothing wrong with this. Finally former Wyoming andnow Hawaii Journalist Tiffany Edwards Hunt is a Squaw who has smoked drugs in front of her kids & journalist Tiffany Edwards Hunt farts and does smelly turds in front of her kids. Tiffany Edwards Hunt's website is www.bigislandchronicle.com

    Posted by: snowisfun | Oct 22, 2012 8:43:16 AM

  10. With all due respect [and RIP Jawan], murder is the ultimate crime with the ultimate consequences. I have no problem with it being referred to as a 'hate' crime in the sense he may have been targeted for being gay [I believe this is the case], but it'll make little to no material difference in the legal sense. If convicted in a court, those who murdered him will spend probably the rest of their life in prison [NON-AMERICANS: Illinois doesn't have a death penalty].

    @Lil' Canadian,

    How you have managed to last this long without having the snot beat out of you is a miracle.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Oct 22, 2012 9:12:30 AM

  11. If Jawan had been white and in a Chicago suburb, can you imagine the hue and cry for Hate crime application to this murder instead of "we don't know if this fits the crime yet" ?

    Posted by: DC Arnold | Oct 22, 2012 9:29:02 AM

  12. All I say is this Markus and Snowinfun you 2 are 2 hateful and SICK Motherf*cking F@gs!

    Posted by: Chris DaChocolatebearcub | Oct 22, 2012 10:09:31 AM

  13. Does anyone moderate these comments? What purpose does it serve to have the hateful comments posted here? RIP Jawan and go to hell the few whose names I dare not type.

    Posted by: Chaszle | Oct 22, 2012 10:18:36 AM

  14. @DC ARNOLD,

    DC, painfully obvious 'hate' crimes involving race, sexual orientation, etc. happen all the time. The same people who say Jawan wasn't the victim of a hate crime for being gay are the same people who will say a white person who was targeted for being white wasn't a gate crime victim.

    BTW DC: What if Jawan had been an 'Urban' [READ: poor - working class] white kid who was targeted for being gay? What if Jawan had been a black gay suburban kid from a nice middle class family?

    Posted by: ratbastard | Oct 22, 2012 10:52:38 AM

  15. For the record, I've had the audacity to ask Boxer Mike Gerard Tyson about the bite fight to HIS Face. This happened on Jan, 5, 1999 when I lived in Arizona. Mike Tyson came to my then workplace & we shook hands. I saw gold filling & by Freudin slip I asked if 'was that the tooth you bit Evander Holyfield with'. Mr. Tyson then put his hands on my shoulder & said 'listen...', I then asked him who his next fight was going to be against, he said 'Francois Botha' to which I asked if he was from France to which Mike Tyson said 'no South Africa, but that's a good guess.'

    Now with this Black gay kid, is this kid also 1/2 American Indian? American Indian homosexuals are the worst. Methew Wayne Shepard was a bad homo who was moody, obnoxious & self-centered. Methew Wayne Shepard was a drug junky who mixed Ecstasy with antidepressants. Methew Wayne Shepard chose University of Wyoming out of all the colleges he could get into but then put it down. Also Methew Wayne Shepard once falsely accused some1 of a crime he didn't do and again, Methew Wayne Shepard had rude habit of cutting in line in front of retirees and women with kids while shopping. But Squaw Journalist Tiffany Edwards Hunt who smokes drugs in front of her kids was an apologist for him.

    With this Black kid, most crimes against Blacks are committed by other Blacks. Impotence is good for homosexuals and gay/lesbian activities are comparable to drug junkyism so Chris DaChocolatebearcub, I'm straight. It's best for gays and lesbians to quit gay/lesbian activities. Most gay bashings are men reacting to crimes the homo 1st did & best to distrust gays. Finally as said many times by me, make it a crime to do sex change maimings.

    Posted by: snowisfun | Oct 22, 2012 2:05:16 PM

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