UPDATE: Rockford’s 15th Murder Victim Identified


UPDATE (10/11/18) – The Winnebago County Coroner has identified the victim as Prince Chatman, 35, of Rockford.  He died from a gunshot wound.

Gun violence claims another life in Rockford.  After the incident, residents say they need to come together to fight back against the violence in their neighborhood.

Police tape, squad cars, lights flashing.  Investigators work to find out who is responsible for the death of a 35-year old man.   “We received multiple calls of shots being fired in the area of Johnston and Chestnut,” said Rockford Police Chief Dan O’Shea.

“I heard some shots,” said Rockford Resident Doc Ward Jr. “I [went] to the door, looked up the street and all I see and heard [is] all this noise, I walked up the street to see what’s going on.”

Ward Jr. witnessed police on scene investigating.  Officers arrived, around 4 p.m., and found a black SUV with the 35-year old man inside with gunshot wounds.  He was taken to the hospital and pronounced dead.

“I was kind of surprised to [see] a car, hit a tree and somebody in the car that got shot,” said Ward Jr.

Just next door, a woman’s home was struck by a bullet.  She tells Eyewitness News, off-camera, she heard a commotion, went downstairs and saw a hole in the window,  the door, and into her living room wall.

“We believe it was a targeted attack,” said Chief O’Shea.  In light of the incident, Ward Jr and neighbor Clayborn Sockwell believe it’s important for his community to come together to avoid another scene like Wednesday afternoon’s.

“I’m quite sure somebody saw something that happened,” said Ward Jr. “I know people get scared and don’t want to say anything, but you should say something and have some idea of what’s going on in your own neighborhood.”

“In the neighborhood we need to start watching out for each other,” said Echoed Sockwell. “Getting each others phone numbers so if they see something they can call each other. If I don’t want to tell the police tell your neighbor, your neighbor can maybe call them.”

The victims identity has not yet been released.

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