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Brawl Leads To Boy's Death

By Marcus Gilmer in News on Sep 25, 2009 5:40PM

Family photo of Albert, via Sun-Times
Derrion Albert, 16, was beaten to death in the midst of violent brawl yesterday afternoon. The brawl occurred yesterday afternoon around 3 p.m. near 111th and Wallace in Roseland. According to the Tribune:

Milton Massie, executive director of the Agape Community Center, said he has reviewed footage of the beating caught by a camera attached to the community center. "It was mob action, basically a bunch of kids, some coming from the east and others from the west on the street, fighting," he said.

He and other witnesses said it started out with about 10 teens and quickly escalated to more than 50. Massie said most of the teens were using their hands and feet, but he saw at least one using a 2-by-4. "It wasn't until the cops drew a gun and one kid was Tasered that they started to run and scatter," said Massie.

Some witnesses said Albert did not appear to be the target. They said teens from the Altgeld Gardens housing development have been feuding with kids from the Roseland community. Most of the teens from both areas attend Fenger.

One worker at the community center told the Tribune it seemed that Derrion wasn't involved but rather simply (and sadly), "He just ended up being at the wrong place." Derrion's family told the Trib that they believe he was beaten because he had resisted joining a gang. Others in the neighborhood tell the Trib that violence had been escalating all weeks, culminating in yesterday's mob violence and they fear more violence on Monday. According to the Sun-Times, as of late last night, police did not have anyone in custody.