Will County sheriff's office

Duo Charged With Fatal Will County Shooting After Cops Find Them In Lawndale

October 30, 2018 - 6:51 am
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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- Two men were charged with the fatal shooting of another man early Sunday in unincorporated Will County after investigators tracked them to the Lawndale neighborhood on the Southwest Side.

Elijah J. Watson, 20, and Anthony Francimore, 23, are both facing first-degree murder and robbery charges, according to the Will County sheriff’s office. Watson was also charged with a single count of unlawful use of a weapon by a felon.

Deputies responded about 1 a.m. to the 500 block of Fox Street in unincorporated Joliet Township and found 20-year-old Nathan J. Ballard lying face down in the street with multiple people surrounding him, the sheriff’s office said. Ballard, who had suffered a single gunshot wound to his chest, was taken to Silver Cross Hospital in New Lenox and pronounced dead.

A witness at the scene told deputies the shooters drove off in a black Dodge Magnum with tinted windows, and detectives later learned the suspects fled to Chicago, the sheriff’s office said.

After detectives met with officers in the city, the Magnum was found about 12:30 p.m. near the intersection of 14th Street and Karlov Avenue, the sheriff’s office said. Just over an hour later, Watson and Francimore drove off in the car.

The duo, who had previously been identified as suspects in the investigation, were then arrested during an ensuing traffic stop, the sheriff’s office said. Once in custody, they were taken to the Will County Public Safety Complex for questioning and processing.

During their investigation, detectives learned that Watson fired off several shots as they drove away from Ballard, with one of them striking him in his chest, the sheriff’s office said. The pair had initially intended to rob Ballard, but it was unclear whether they took any property.

Bail for both men was set at $5 million, the sheriff’s office said. Their next scheduled court dates weren’t immediately known.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire & Chicago Sun-Times 2018. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)