Charges pending in fatal shooting of girl, 8, in Portage Park

Charges are pending against a man who police say shot and killed an 8-year-old girl in the Portage Park neighborhood over the weekend.

The girl, Sarabi Medina, was shot in the head about 9:40 p.m. Saturday in the 3500 block of North Long as she was riding a scooter. The shooting occurred shortly after her father purchased ice cream for her, according to anti-violence activist Andrew Holmes.

After the child was shot, her father tackled the gunman who was then shot in the face with the same weapon, according to Holmes and a statement from Chicago Police. The suspect remained hospitalized in critical condition at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center as of Monday morning.

“When it happened, he returned from getting ice cream for him and her,” Holmes said. “He had asked her to go ahead and put up a scooter, and at that time they had noticed the individual on the street but they was trying to wonder what he was doing.”

Holmes said the individual was acting “erratically,” and neighbors saw him cross the street and discharge a gun. He said the father ran at the gunman and “football tackled him.” The gun then went off and hit the suspect in the face-area, he said.

Holmes said the father told him he didn’t know the suspect. He said police are still trying to figure out a motive for the shooting.

“They knew something was wrong with this guy,” Holmes said. “Didn’t seem to have it all, whether he had some mental episode or what we don’t know.”

Holmes said Medina’s mother was shot and killed in 2019. He said the shooting has retraumatized her dad, bringing back painful memories.

“It’s a heartbreaking experience for him,” Holmes said.

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