(Tribune) Maurice Granton walked out of a hospital last weekend with a graze wound near his right eye, refusing to cooperate with police who found him lying in an alley in Chatham on the South Side, authorities said.
Days later, barely 4 miles away in Bronzeville, police say Granton started running from plainclothes officers working a drug investigation Wednesday night. He ignored their orders to stop, pulled a gun and was shot by one of the officers, according to a statement from the Police Department.
Granton, 24, was pronounced dead at the University of Chicago Medical Center, the same hospital that treated his graze wound last Saturday. He had been shot in the back, according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office.
The Police Department released a video it said shows Granton holding a gun sometime before he was shot by the officer in the 4700 block of South Prairie Avenue. The department also tweeted out a photo of a 9 mm handgun it said was recovered. The department did not say whether there was an exchange of gunfire between the officer and Granton.
Officers in one of the department’s Strategic Decision Support Centers had spotted Glanton in a drug transaction while watching a police surveillance camera, according to police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi. The officers alerted others on patrol, and they responded to 47th Street and Prairie Avenue to confront Glanton, he said.
It’s unusual for the department to release video related to a police shooting investigation in its early stages. “This video is … being released in response to claims that offender was unarmed and the weapon was planted by CPD officers,” Guglielmi said.
Granton’s sister, Joanna Varnado, is among those who don’t believe he had a gun. “I just want to know what the real story is,” she said of her brother, who has two young daughters. “If it was misconduct, I want justice. My brother was 24 years old. He loved his girls. That’s all he lived for, was his kids.”
Granton has two convictions on his record for robbery and theft, and several arrests for trespassing and drug possession. But his family said Granton was not a violent man. “Since when does running validate somebody getting shot?” Varnado said. “I don’t understand that. You’re not being offensive, you’re being defensive.”
Article Org: Chicagotribune.com