Englewood can’t understand death of Ramal ‘Pooh’ Hicks, best known for his sense of humor and cooking skills

Ramal Hicks | photo provided

Ramal Hicks | photo provided

By TYLER HOLMES
Homicide Watch Chicago

Whenever Ramal Hicks arrived at a family event, it was understood that he would be the one standing behind the grill. A beloved member of the Englewood community, he was known as much for his cooking skills as comedic nature and outgoing personality.

“My brother was a jokester – he was the jokester of the family,” said Terrance Hicks Jr., Ramal Hicks’s eldest brother. “The day before [the shooting] happened, we were having a picnic and he had a water fight with my daughter. That’s just the kind of guy he was.”

The 34-year-old was shot in the lower back and chest on June 20 around 12:45 a.m. in the 1500 block of West 69th Street, according to Chicago Police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office. He was pronounced dead at 3:55 a.m at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn.

Family and friends in the surrounding area were shocked and saddened by the death of the man they called “Pooh” because Winnie the Pooh was his favorite cartoon character.
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Man gets 30 years for killing his mother, Damita Collins, during argument in their Ashburn home in 2015

By JORDAN OWEN
Chicago Sun-Times Wire

Andre Brown | Chicago Police

Andre Brown | Chicago Police

When Andre Brown and his mother, Damita Collins, got into an argument about his not having a girlfriend last year at their Ashburn home, he ended up stabbing her to death, according to Cook County prosecutors. And for that, he was sentenced to 30 years in prison.

Brown was found guilty of murder on May 27 after a bench trial before Judge Matthew Coghlan, according to Cook County court records.

On Jan. 5, 2015, he stabbed the 54-year-old Collins in the chest, then slit her throat in the home they shared in the 3500 block of West 77th Place on Jan. 5, 2015, authorities said at the time.

Collins was administrator of the Trumbull Park Head Start Program at Ada S. McKinley School.

Collins’ husband was in the basement eating dinner and watching the Bulls game about 9 p.m. when he heard several loud noises upstairs, prosecutors said. He went upstairs and found his bedroom door locked, but before he could open it with the key, Brown yanked the door open and forced his way out.
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Public defender: Man accused of stabbing Jessica Hampton on Red Line train suffers from paranoid schizophrenia

By RUMMANA HUSSAIN
Chicago Sun-Times

Arthur S. Jones | Cook County Sheriff's Dept.

Arthur S. Jones | Cook County Sheriff’s Dept.


The man accused of stabbing Jessica Renee Hampton to death on a CTA Red Line train suffers from paranoid schizophrenia and had been living at a nursing home to address his mental health issues, an assistant Cook County public defender said in court Wednesday.

Arthur S. Jones, 29, has been institutionalized at least 10 times since he was diagnosed with the illness in high school. He was kicked out of DuSable High in ninth grade, defense attorney Julie Koehler told Judge Adam Bourgeois Jr.

Jones is charged with killing the 25-year-old Hampton while they were riding a southbound train together June 23.

At some point during their commute, the two, who were in a “dating relationship,” began arguing, Assistant State’s Attorney April Gonzales said.

As they fought, they moved to different cars and at the 35th Street stop, Jones lit a cigarette and asked Hampton if she was going to have his baby, Gonzales said.
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Matusalem Dominguez-Gutierrez fatally stabbed in what police say was a domestic incident in Back of the Yards

A stabbed to death early Tuesday during a domestic fight in the Back of the Yards has been identified as Matusalem Dominguez-Gutierrez, and police say a suspect is in custody.

The 30-year-old Dominguez-Gutierrez was found unresponsive with multiple stab wounds about 12:55 a.m. in the entrance hallway of a building in the 1700 block of West 51st Street, according to Chicago Police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

Dominguez-Gutierrez, who lived in the building where he was attacked, was pronounced dead at the scene at 1:37 a.m., according to the medical examiner’s office. An autopsy found he died of a stab wound to the thigh, and his death was ruled a homicide.

Police said the stabbing incident was domestic in nature, and a 43-year-old man has been taken into custody. Charges were pending against him Wednesday afternoon.

—Chicago Sun-Times Wire

Kentrail McCray found shot to death just two blocks from his home in North Lawndale

A man shot to death Monday night in the North Lawndale neighborhood has been identified as 24-year-old Kentrail McCray, killed just blocks away from him home.

Officers found McCray lying in the street in the 1600 block of South Kedzie at 9:22 p.m., according to Chicago Police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

McCray, who lived in the 1600 block of South Spaulding, had gunshot wounds to the back and buttocks, and was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital, where he died at 10:17 p.m., according to authorities.

An autopsy found he died of multiple gunshot wounds and his death was ruled a homicide.

—Chicago Sun-Times Wire

Alfondia Kelly killed, woman injured in drive-by shooting while cooking out in lot near his home in Englewood

Alfondia Kelly was killed and a woman was injured in a drive-by shooting Monday night during a barbecue in the Englewood neighborhood.

Two people were shot, one fatally, Monday night in the 6600 block of South Union. | Network Video Productions

Two people were shot, one fatally, Monday night in the 6600 block of South Union. | Network Video Productions


The pair were cooking out about 11:25 p.m. in a vacant lot in the 6600 block of South Union when a black SUV drove by and someone inside opened fire, according to Chicago Police.

Kelly, 44, was shot in the armpit and was taken to Stroger Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 12:15 a.m. Tuesday, according to police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office. He lived on the block where the shooting happened.

The woman, 21, suffered a gunshot wound to the back and was also taken to Stroger, where her condition was stabilized, police said.

—Chicago Sun-Times Wire

67-year-old Lonnie King dies just over 24 hours after being shot with two other men on Englewood street corner

Sixty-seven-year-old Lonnie King died Sunday night after he was shot along with two other men the night before on an Englewood neighborhood corner.

The group of three men was standing on a corner in the 700 block of West 66th Street about 6:45 p.m. when someone came out of an alley, fired shots and ran off northbound, according to Chicago Police.

King was shot in the back and was taken to Stroger Hospital, where he died at 9:43 p.m. Sunday, according to police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office. He lived in the 8600 block of South Carpenter.

A 50-year-old man was also taken to Stroger Hospital with two gunshot wounds to the buttocks, and his condition was stabilized, police said.

A 30-year-old man suffered a gunshot wound to the left hand and took himself to St. Bernard Hospital and Health Care Center, where he was in good condition, police said.

—Chicago Sun-Times Wire

WEEK IN REVIEW: At least 15 killed in violence in Chicago, pushing the year’s homicide total to more than 300

By JEFF MAYES
Chicago Sun-Times Wire

Police tape at an armored car robbery. | Brian Jackson~Sun-Times

Police tape at an armored car robbery. | Brian Jackson~Sun-Times


At least 14 people died from violence in Chicago last week, including a woman who was stabbed to death by her ex-boyfriend on a crowded CTA train on the South Side, and the weekend was especially deadly, with seven fatal shootings reported between Friday night and Sunday.

The deadly week brought the Chicago murder total to at least 312 for the year, according to unofficial statistics compiled by the Chicago Sun-Times Wire.

The most shocking crime of the week came as a man and woman were arguing on a crowded CTA Red Line train Thursday afternoon and the man suddenly stabbed his ex-girlfriend repeatedly, killing her, police said. Jessica Renee Hampton, 25, was stabbed multiple times on a southbound train near the 47th Street station in Greater Grand Crossing at 12:33 p.m., authorities said. Hampton, who lived in the 6600 block of South Laflin, was pronounced dead at the scene. An autopsy showed she died of a stab wound to the neck.

Passengers on the train called 911 to report the stabbing, and an officer was already near the 47th Street Red Line stop as the train pulled up, police said. The suspect stepped off the train, saw the officer and surrendered. On Saturday, bond was denied for 29-year-old Arthur S. Jones, who is charged with first-degree murder for the attack.

  • The week’s final homicide victim was a 67-year-old man who died Sunday night, after he and two other men were shot Saturday evening in the Englewood neighborhood. The group was congregating on a corner in the 700 block of West 66th Street about 6:45 p.m. Saturday when someone came out of an alley, fired shots and ran off northbound, according to police.

    Lonnie King, 67, was shot in the back and was taken to Stroger Hospital, where he died at 9:43 p.m. Sunday, according to authorities. A 50-year-old man was also taken to Stroger Hospital with two gunshot wounds to the buttocks and his condition was stabilized. A 30-year-old man suffered a gunshot wound to the left hand and took himself to St. Bernard Hospital and Health Care Center, where he was in good condition, police said.

  • Early Sunday, a man was shot to death in the Austin neighborhood. Officers responding to a call of shots fired at 5:08 a.m. in the 900 block of North Massasoit found 41-year-old Frederick Johnson in the driver seat of a car with two gunshot wounds to the chest, according to Chicago Police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office. He was dead at the scene.
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16-year-old Trevell Parker fatally shot in West Garfield Park

Sixteen-year-old Trevell Parker died about 90 minutes after he was shot in the head Thursday night in the West Garfield Park neighborhood.

Officers found the teen about 10 p.m. in the 4400 block of West Wilcox with gunshot wounds to the head and abdomen, Chicago Police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office said.

Parker, who lived in the 1800 block of South Kedzie, was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 11:26 a.m. Friday, authorities said.

—Chicago Sun-Times Wire

Aspiring rapper Brandon Nolls of Joliet found with fatal gunshot wounds in Humboldt Park

Brandon Jacques Nolls of southwest suburban Joliet was shot to death Friday evening in the West Side Humboldt Park neighborhood.

Officers responding about 9 p.m. to a call of a person shot in the 1000 block of North Harding found the 24-year-old lying on the ground, according to Chicago Police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

Nolls was shot in the left shoulder and back, and was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 10:38 p.m., according to police and the medical examiner’s office.

Nolls, an aspiring rapper who performed as PG12, lived in the 1100 block of South Summit Street in Joliet.

An autopsy found he died of a gunshot wound to the back and his death was ruled a homicide.

—Chicago Sun-Times Wire